4:30 PM, Tuesday, November 20 in the Board Auditorium
Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax
After years of delay, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is finally ready to make changes to the County’s unsustainable pension plan. In response to the untiring efforts of Republican Supervisors Pat Herrity and John Cook, the Democrat-dominated Board has finally agreed to consider reducing benefits instead of raising taxes.
The Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on pension reform at its meeting scheduled for 4:30 PM, Tuesday, November 20, in the Board Auditorium, Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA. Please attend the hearing to applaud speakers who favor sustainable budgets and/or to present your views on this subject.
The Pension Problem. Fairfax County pension plans, which have a $2.2 billion unfunded liability, are unsustainable. Since 2000, county spending on pensions has increased 244% while the number of county employees increased by only 11%. While most private-sector employees no longer get pensions, a county employee with 30 years can retire at age 55 with 90% of salary. Private employers contribute 3% or 4% of an employee’s salary to a 401K, but Fairfax County contributes 27% of salary to the employee’s pension plan.
In addition to increasing taxes, pension costs compete with the County’s ability to fund the high quality services residents expect and the ability to pay the salaries to hire the best and brightest employees and teachers. Too much of our tax dollar currently goes to pay for employee pensions.
The Proposed Pension Fix. To make the pension plans sustainable, the Supervisors are considering pension benefit reductions for new employees only. The proposed reductions include:
- Increasing the Minimum Retirement Age from 55 to 60.
- Increasing the Rule of 85 to the Rule of 90—age plus years of service will need to be 90 for full retirement for general county employees.
- Eliminating the Pre Social Security Supplement—basically county paid social security at retirement until social security age.
- Increasing the Salary Averaging Period from 3 years to 5 years.
- Eliminating the provision that automatically increases the retirement annuity by 3% annually.
For a more detailed assessment of Fairfax County’s unsustainable pension plan and proposals to reform it, please visit The Herrity Report here and here.Again, the November 20 hearing is for public comment on these and other reductions. Advocates for higher taxes usually outnumber taxpayers 10-to-1 at Board of Supervisors hearings, and the Supervisors usually vote accordingly.Please sign up here to voice your views on the County’s unsustainable pension plan. At a minimum, please attend the hearing to applaud speakers who favor sustainable budgets.
Paid for and Authorized by Fairfax County Republican Committee and Not Authorized by Any Candidate or Candidate’s Committee