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Public sector pension review ordered

Posted by on Sep 15, 2011 in Retirement | 0 comments

CBC News

Posted: Sep 15, 2011 2:33 PM AT

Last Updated: Sep 15, 2011 2:43 PM AT

Finance Minister Blaine Higgs ordered a review of public sector pensions on Thursday.Finance Minister Blaine Higgs ordered a review of public sector pensions on Thursday. CBC

Finance Minister Blaine Higgs is ordering a review of public sector pensions with the mandate to examine whether they are sustainable for employees and how they compare with private sector retirement plans.

Higgs announced on Thursday that a three-person task force that was already studying private sector pensions for the provincial government would also look at the civil service plan.

Higgs said in a statement the review will study whether the public sector plan is managed efficiently and transparently.

“The objective is to ensure the long-term financial viability of the plans and also to ensure we are following the best possible governance and management practices,” he said.

The task force will examine four issues:

  • the differences between public service pension benefits and pensions offered by private sector employers
  • the importance of maintaining the public service’s ability to recruit and retain employees
  • the importance that future pension benefits are reasonable throughout the civil service
  • how financial risk should be shared between the provincial government and its employees

There is no date set for when the task force will finish its review. The Department of Finance is committing that the study will be finished quickly and it will issue progress reports.

The task force includes Susan Rowland, a pension law expert, Paul McCrossan, a consultant and an actuary, and Pierre-Marcel Desjardins, an economist. Desjardins co-authored a study for the Progressive Conservative Party on energy issues prior to the 2010 election campaign.

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