Every tax is a pay cut. Every tax cut is a pay raise.
Citizens for Limited Taxation
|Framingham's Unfunded Pension||Tuesday, July 5, 2005|
|Harold J. Wolfe, Framingham||Metrowest Daily News|
In Framingham, as in other towns across Massachusetts, our town's pension
fund is "underfunded". At the beginning of 2004, the pension fund
stood at $148 million and is only 67.3 percent funded according to our town
manager. This translates to a $71 million shortfall that must be funded
by 2027 according to a recent state law. The amount to be paid will be
dependent on stock market behavior, which has been totally flat in the last
In addition, we will also be paying the normal pension costs leading up to 2027. We the taxpayers will get no improved services for this $71 million. This is merely a transference of wealth from our pockets to the town and school employees. However we choose to pay it, (fixed or accelerated schedule), the town manager's recent three-year financial projection shows growing deficits.
A recent Business Week report shows that public sector employees now get significantly better salaries and pensions than their private sector counterparts. An operational override will simply exacerbate this imbalance in the future. Both illegal immigration and outsourcing have suppressed salaries in the private sector, but the public sector salaries are still rising. Regrettably, we have too many spineless leaders in our town who can't cut services, so an override is inevitable, but it will be defeated.
This $71 million will be a nice set of golden feathers for the teachers retirement nest egg, while the rest of us retire in a box under a bridge.
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