Statements about Pensions
"The pension fund in the city of Providence is only 30 percent funded, about the same level as when he [Taveras] took office."
Rhode Island's state pension system "underperformed the median three out of the four years that Mr. [Frank] Caprio was in office."
Cranston's 2014-2015 "budget funds 100 percent of the local police and fire pension and other retiree benefit costs."
"We see a quarter-billion dollars in a pension fund that needs to be funded at $1.2 billion."
"Providence has more of its pension fund invested in hedge funds and is less transparent" about it than the state.
Since Gina Raimondo took office, investment fees on the state's pension portfolio "have gone up from about $12 million annually to about $50 million."
"Over the past five years the federal government has paid out $601 million in retirement and disability benefits to deceased former federal employees."
"I think with the exception of the last year or maybe the last two years, we were at 100 percent" when it came to contributing to the Providence pension fund.
"Eighty-five percent . . . of Rhode Island tax returns that were filed for the year 2010 . . . were from individuals who earned $30,000 or less."
"If they made no changes whatsoever, the [state employees pension] plan still had enough money to go forward for approximately the next 16 years."
"The job [of correctional officer] lowers your life expectancy . . . Metropolitan did a study in, I believe it was 1998, and the life expectancy was 58."
Rhode Island Treasurer Gina Raimondo "raised the mortality rate from 65 to 87" and "used a 1994 annuity chart" to create the pension crisis.
"If Rhode Island does a hybrid [retirement] plan we’ll be the first state in the nation to do this.’’
"The State of Rhode Island has the worst state-funded pension in the country."
"This is the first time in our state, and one of the first times in the country, where benefit reductions . . . has happened to people who are retired."
The law has not established whether Rhode Island public employees have property rights to their pensions.
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