From the National Institute on Retirement Security: New Case Study Examines How Dismantling Pensions Triggered Mass Exodus of Public Safety Workers

Thanks to Jeff Wiggins for sending us this.

Palm Beach Town Council Reinstated Pension Plan After Unsuccessful and Costly Shift to 401(k) Accounts  

Webinar on Thursday, February 15th at 1 PM ET to Review Findings 

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 8, 2018 – A new case study examines the impacts of the 2012 actions of the Town of Palm Beach to close its existing defined benefit (DB) pension systems for its employees, including police officers and firefighters.

The new “combined” retirement plans offered dramatically lower DB pension benefits and new individual 401(k)-style defined contribution (DC) retirement accounts. Shortly thereafter, the town experienced a high rate of retirements and unprecedented early departures of experienced police officers and firefighters to neighboring towns that offered better pensions. Now understaffed, the town faced increased costs to pay overtime hours and train replacements for more than 100 public safety workers who departed during a four-year period after the pension changes.

Following this large, swift exodus of public safety employees, the town reconsidered the changes. In 2016, the Town Council voted to abandon the DC plans and to improve the pension plan for police officers and firefighters.

Read more here.