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San Diego City’s Pension Contributions Drop


Aired 4/19/09


San Diego city’s pension actuaries have released their analysis of the state of the city’s pension fund. It includes good news and bad news for next year. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.



The unexpected good news is that, according to the actuarial calculations, the city will have to pay almost $7 million  LESS into its pension fund next year than it did this year.


This year, San Diego paid $162 million into its pension fund.  Next year Cheiron, the actuaries, estimate the annual required contribution will be $154 million.


The bad news is that the city’s funded ratio this June fell very slightly, though it hovers around 78%. That’s still much healthier than when the pension crisis was at its worst, and the fund was only about 65% funded.


According to the report, the reason the contribution will be less next year is partly because of the high turnover at city hall …more employees leaving than expected cuts down on the vested benefits.


Officials say it’s important to note that next year’s pension payment is based on a snap shot of the state of the pension fund in June 2008 …that’s  BEFORE the economic crisis hit. 


Alison St John, KPBS news.


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