Grand Jury Report: Retirement plans to tally $336M in unfunded pensions | TheUnion.com

Grand Jury Report: Retirement plans to tally $336M in unfunded pensions

Submitted to The Union

A new Nevada County Grand Jury report was released Monday highlighting an investigation into issues regarding local pension programs that may have caused an "unprecedented and largely unplanned increase in the cost of public employee pensions" tallying more than $336 million in unfunded financial obligations, according to a grand jury press release.

"This report deals with a very complex financial obligation levied on Nevada County, the cities of Grass Valley, Nevada City, the town of Truckee, all Special Districts and all School Districts," the release stated. "Simply, all county agencies that employ publicly funded employees and teachers and had previously chosen to utilize the pension services of the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers' Retirement System (CalSTRS) are now facing an unprecedented and largely unplanned increase in the cost of public employee pensions … "

The Grand Jury found inadequate earnings and increase expenses over the past decade are expected to continue.

"Our investigation has revealed that the size of this unfunded financial obligation of 28 of 31 local public agencies in this county (including local special and school districts) is approximately $336.3 million. Further, while every public agency in Nevada County has non-funded pension obligations, some appear to have adequate resources to meet them … but many do not."

According to the release, the Grand Jury calls for increased exposure of this issue and increased transparency on the part of public agencies to their constituents.

Source: Nevada County Grand Jury