Saturday, September 1, 2012

STATEMENT OF ASSEMBLYMEMBER TONI ATKINS ON STATE LEGISLATURE’S ADOPTION OF PENSION REFORM


Sacramento - Today I joined with my legislative colleagues to adopt AB 340, which implements a wide range of reforms designed to rein in the costs of employee pensions for state and local governments.  This balanced measure reduces pension benefits for new government employees and eliminates many of the pension-padding practices of the past, while still providing retirees with a stable, reliable standard of living in their senior years.

AB 340 represents a framework for responsible and fair pension reform.  The legislature will address additional proposed reforms in future legislative sessions. Local jurisdictions that desire to implement broader reforms have the authority to do so under AB 340.  In addition, charter cities such as San Diego are exempt from the bill, leaving Proposition B -- the pension measure recently adopted by San Diego voters -- intact.  This reform measure was supported by both the California League of Cities and the California State Association of Counties, both of which represent local governments.

A decade ago, the City of San Diego faced the consequences of having underfunded the city employee pension program since the 1980’s – unfunded liabilities that jeopardized funding for all city services.  I was a member of the City Council that ended that pattern.  As Chair of the City Budget Committee, I led the work to implement budget discipline that has resulted in fiscal stability for San Diego and a restoration of critical services for residents.

AB 340 will enable state and local governments to similarly bring pension costs under control and to demonstrate our commitment to responsibly managing the taxpayers’ money.

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1 comment:

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