Issue: Pension Reform

Identifying the issues, influencing legislation and shaping the debate on key education issues

Understanding the Issue

Pension reform to dominate 2013-14 legislative agenda 
If not addressed, the pension crisis will have a crippling effect on the state's economy and a devastating impact on local school district budgets. The current system is unsustainable, leaving taxpayers to feel the brunt of staggering increases unless a workable, long-term solution is enacted.

PSBA Postion Paper: Supports SB 1169, P.N 1563 (Sen. Folmer) position paper pdf (December 2013)
PSBA supports Senate Bill 1169, which would effectively remove all future employees of our association from membership eligibility for the Pennsylvania School Employees Retirement System (PSERS).

PSBA Pension Study Committee Report Pension Study PDFPDF (September 2009)
The PSBA Executive Board created an ad hoc Pension Study Committee to examine the rising cost of the Public School Employees' Retirement System (PSERS) and to formulate policy recommendations for the board's consideration.

Pension Committee Summary of Recommendations (updated December 2009)


PSBA Legislative Platform

PSBA's 2013 legislative platform contains two relevant pension planks.  They are as follows:

  • Opposes any legislation that has the effect of increasing the net employer cost and/or the unfunded long-term liabilities of PSERS.  Any increase in the school district portion of the employer contribution rate for any pension plans would be capped at the Act 1 (or successor) index, with the state to fund any remaining employer obligation.
  • Supports legislation that would improve the actuarial soundness of PSERS including, but not limited to: 1) requiring an employer contribution rate floor of at least normal cost; 2) actuarially appropriate adjustments to amortization of gains and losses; 3) limitation of eligibility (4) adjustment of benefit levels; 5) adoption of either a hybrid pension plan or an alternative plan whose effect would be to reduce employer costs over time; and 6) development of additional revenue sources. 

2013 Major School Employee Pension Proposals

Governor: Gov. Corbett releases pension reform plan


Member Resources

  • Pension reform testimony presented before the House State Governement Committee by Emily Leader Esq., PSBA acting assistant exec. director for Legal Services (April 16)

  • Sample Pension Reform Resolution
  • Glossary of Pension Terms              
  • Graphs and Charts

  • Reports

    • Keystone Pension Report, A Discussion of Structural Reform and Relief to Pennsylvania's Retirement System for Long Term Sustainability, Office of the Budget, Fall 2012.
  • Web Conferences

    • PSBA Critical Issues Member Call Series: Key Issues in PSERS
      PSBA presented a three-part webinar series focused on the economy and its impact on PSERS, its investment strategy and its impact on school districts. 

      • Dec. 13 -- PSERS Funding and Reform: How Changes Will Impact Your District (audio recording) Dial (800) 920-7487 and when prompted, enter code * 7316268#. The Power Points slides used during the presentation can be downloaded here PSERS_Dec_13.
      • Nov. 16 -- GASB Financial Reporting for Pensions: What You Need to Know (audio recording) Dial (800) 920-7487 and when prompted, enter code  *9552981#. The slides used during the presentation can be downloaded here November.
      • Oct. 26 -- The Global- and State-Level Retirement Challenge (audio recording) Dial (800) 920-7487 and when prompted, enter code  *4342747#. The slides used during the presentation can be downloaded here October 2012.