Public Sector Challenges & You

January 25, 2011 - Al
Turn on the tv, radio or Internet on any given day and you’ll see no shortage of news about the fiscal challenges facing many state and local governments.
thedreambigsite.org was designed to help public sector workers realize their financial dreams and serve as a platform for you to share your views on benefits, job security, salaries and other financial topics.
Here’s an outline of the current lay of the land.
 
Key concerns facing many state and local governments:
  • The recession’s impact: after a major fall in tax receipts in 2009, revenues overall have stabilized but remain well below pre-recession levels. And budget shortfalls for several governments are projected for the next few years.
  • Some states have promised workers pension and health care benefits that may be challenging to deliver on due to those financial challenges.
  • Meanwhile, scrutiny of public pensions by legislators, governors, and media and advocacy groups has increased. 
Many state and local governments are reacting by:
  • implementing various tightening measures, including raising taxes, cutting services, and implementing layoffs and furloughs;
  • reevaluating employee benefits, including curbing pension COLAs, requiring employees to contribute more to retirement and health-care plans, eliminating retiree health benefits for new hires, and extending the retirement age to receive full pension benefits; and
  • adopting hybrid pension plans to replace traditional defined benefit plans that shift more responsibility for funding to employees.

Have these developments affected you or your family, directly or indirectly? If so, what steps have you taken in response, whether related to reducing expenses, saving more, shoring up your job skills, or adjusting your expectations? Share your thoughts by clicking on “Comments” above.

1 Comment:

  1. June 14, 2011 - L W

    I work for a city that has reduced medical benefits and increased the cost to the employees.
    This same city keeps adding new parks and libraries. They built a new state of the art football stadium recently that has had a lot of media attention. We are hoping it is a money maker, but so far it has increased crimes such as DWI's and public intoxication.
    Some of us are working with less resources. We haven't had a pay raise in 4 years and we don't really expect raises soon. We have more work for the same pay, and as anyone knows, groceries and gas are more expensive.

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