France’s main weather channel has announced that there is a 70 percent chance of this summer being cold and wet across Spain, France, Portugal, Germany and Austria.
June and July are only likely to have short periods of summer heat which will in turn bring heavy storms in August.
Flag as inappropriateThere’s a Little Ice Age on the way. When it sets hold, we’ll all be praying for global warming.
Flag as [...]
$822,000 Worker Shows California Leads U.S. Pay Giveaway
Nine years ago, California Democrat Gray Davis became the first U.S. governor in 82 years to be recalled by voters. The state’s 20 million taxpayers still bear the cost of his four years and 10 months on the job.
Davis escalated salaries and benefits for 164,000 state workers, including a 34 percent raise for prison guards, the first of a series of steps in which he and successors saddled California [...]
From The Burning Platform:
Government union employees should enjoy the remaining time in their fantasyland of high salaries, tremendous health benefits, and glorious pensions. It will all end because the promises are unpayable.
It’s simple math. The taxpayers will not pay. The localities will declare bankruptcy because they have no choice. The money isn’t there. All the promises will not be fulfilled…
… When contemplating the many reasons cities in California and elsewhere [...]
Storm Clouds Hovering
Municipal bonds have long been touted for their tax-free income, but overspending and fiscal mismanagement is pushing states and cities to the brink.
Increasing credit risk is also undermining the tax-free income muni-bonds are revered for. And then, there’s the uncomfortable subject of pension benefits. Under current actuarial assumptions, state and local government pensions are underfunded by roughly $1 trillion.
Due to the financial crisis, it’s understandable that we’ve become [...]
Unless Antonis Samaras can convince the economic ‘troika’ Greece deserves third instalment the country face bankruptcy
‘The troika’ consists of The EU, IMF and ECB
Greece is reportedly straggling behind in its effort to reduce their deficit
Greek bailout talks come two days after analysts reported Spain was ‘at tipping point’
Mr Samaras promised his parliament the country’s economy would be back on track by 2014
Greece’s Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is meeting with the [...]
The new actuary report on the school employee pension fund shows that the state has a $22.4 billion gap between what it has saved for school employees’ retirement and what workers and retirees have earned.
That is a $4.8 billion increase from last year. All told, the costs to catch up on this underfunded system represent nearly $6,000 per Michigan household.
This is not a one-year issue. Last year’s reports show that [...]
You are not going to believe how much money is being spent on our former presidents. At a time when U.S. government spending is wildly out of control, a total of 3.6 million dollars is being used to support the lavish lifestyles of former presidents such as George W. Bush and Bill Clinton in 2012. For 2013, the plan is to increase that amount to 3.7 million dollars. But [...]
The director of the Illinois Teachers Retirement System warns that financial troubles are so great it could be forced to consider reducing pension benefits to teachers who have already retired, according to a newspaper report Sunday.
The (Springfield) State Journal-Register ( http://bit.ly/HyuHQj) reported Saturday that it obtained a confidential memo written by Dick Ingram warning of the politically explosive possibility of whittling away pensions not just for future retirees but for those [...]
Providence (1055MF), Rhode Island’s capital and biggest city, probably will seek bankruptcy court protection to deal with a budget deficit, Robert Flanders, the state- appointed receiver for nearby Central Falls, said yesterday.
“I don’t see how they can get out of it without going there,” said Flanders, a former stateSupreme Court justice and a partner at Hinckley, Allen & Snyder LLP in Providence. He put Central Falls into bankruptcy in August and has since [...]
(Reuters) – Former New York Times Co (NYT.N) Chief Executive Janet Robinson received a total payout of nearly $24 million after she left the newspaper publisher at the end of last year, according to a regulatory filing on Friday.
Robinson, a 28-year veteran with the company, has yet to be replaced by Chairman and Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr, who is temporarily acting in her place. Robinson’s package includes a $4.5 million [...]
From NYT: An obscure 1991 provision dealing with state pension benefits was only a few paragraphs long, and it escaped public notice at the time. Even the lawmakers who passed it said they did not know what the fine print accomplished until it became law.
But 20 years later, Gov. Rick Perry — and an elite group of other veteran politicians — can thank Government Code 813.503 for the lucrative pension benefits they are [...]
Running short on cash to fund basic services and payroll, Detroit stopped paying some of its vendors in a move that experts say could increase the likelihood of the state appointing an emergency manager or contractors pushing the city into bankruptcy court.
City Council President Pro Tem Gary Brown, the lone Detroit elected official calling for some state intervention, said the city must act more quickly to reduce a runaway deficit [...]
Two months ago we suggested that as part of the transition of austerity’s center from Greece to Rome, we would soon see the launch of “The Piazza Navona Strike Cam.” Close enough: as of this afternoon local time, Rome is literally burning, as expected yesterday when we covered the most recent events in Milan. From the Telegraph: “Demonstrators in Rome set fire to two [...]
A labor leader in Chicago is expected to receive pension payments of nearly $500,000 a year, while another could get about $438,000 a year, according to reports Wednesday.
The Chicago Tribune and WGN-TV, which obtained information about union pension benefits during a joint investigation, said at least eight union officials in Chicago were eligible for what were described as inflated city pensions on top of [...]
By DOUGLAS E. SCHOEN, WSJ
Americans believe that bold action to restrict spending is necessary to stabilize the finances of state government.
Last month, in a wide-ranging national survey of 1,000 randomly selected, registered voters, and in 10 polls in individual states each with 400 respondents, my polling company found that voters strongly favor measures to pare the compensation of current and future public employees. They strongly oppose [...]
For days, the White House has infuriated its Democratic allies in Congress by offering House Republicans more and more in exchange for a deal to raise the debt ceiling and prevent default. But it was never enough, and, on Friday evening, it became clear that it may never be enough. Speaker John Boehner again walked away from the “grand bargain” he had been negotiating with [...]
1) UK Greek bill ‘may hit £14,640 per family’
“Britain could be hit with losses of up to £366bn from the collapse of the Greek economy, it emerged last night.
The potential devastation of banks and other City institutions would be equal to 24% of our annual national output, or £14,640 for every family in the UK.
Ministers had claimed that British banks have ‘only’ £2.5bn of exposure to Greek government [...]
By John Stanton
Roll Call Staff
June 16, 2011, 10:52 p.m.
While Rep. Anthony Weiner may no longer have the benefit of Congress’ generous health care plan once he resigns, he will still be able to collect his pension and other benefits that could total more than $1 million during his lifetime.
According to an analysis of his available benefits by the National Taxpayers Union, the New York Democrat’s pension [...]
Governor Andrew Cuomo is tackling New York state’s spending by limiting public employee pensions and cutting almost 10,000 jobs.
According to the New York Times, Cuomo says the state can no longer afford to provide the “generous” benefits given to public workers in the past. The governor also targets the rampant benefit padding where workers step up their overtime the final year of employment to beef up their [...]
NEW YORK – New York state must slash the rapidly rising pension burden of schools and local governments, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Wednesday, unveiling plans for a sixth tier of benefit cuts.
The new tier, which the Democratic governor said would save $93 billion over the next 30 years, would only affect newly hired public workers. New York’s state constitution prevents lawmakers from curbing retirement benefits already granted.
“Reducing the skyrocketing [...]
THE union that represents 3,800 customer-service and sales staff employed by Air Canada has set a June 13th deadline for the ratification of a new contract, otherwise its members will go on strike. The workers have been without a contract since March 1st. The sticking point is Air Canada’s wish to reduce pension benefits for existing employees and change the pension plan for new workers from defined-benefit to defined-contribution, something [...]
Madison – Many of those who take part-time government jobs in the future would not receive retirement benefits under a measure adopted Tuesday by the Legislature’s budget committee.
The provision also would require newly hired full-time workers for state and local governments and schools to work longer before they could qualify for their full pensions.
The Republican-led Joint Finance Committee adopted the changes on a 12-4 [...]
Conventional wisdom and the laws and constitutions of many states have long held that the pensions being earned by current government workers are untouchable. But as the fiscal crisis has lingered, officials in strapped states from California to Illinois have begun to take a second look, to see whether there might be loopholes allowing them to cut the pension benefits of current employees. Now the [...]
(Reuters) – Thousands of union supporters protested Gov. Scott Walker’s budget proposals on Saturday at the state capital, a day after the state’s chief executive followed through on his threat to issue layoff warning notices to unions representing state workers.
Joining the crowd was liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, who praised the protesters gathered in the battle over union bargaining rights as joining the history of [...]
The bipartisan Little Hoover Commission recommended today that California state and local governments roll back pensions for existing employees, dump guaranteed retirement payouts and put more of the pension burden on workers.
Although any attempt to reduce pensions for current workers would prompt a legal battle, the commission says that public pension funds are in such dire financial straits that they’ll never right themselves by reducing benefits for [...]
by Aaron Task
From Florida to Oregon and almost every state in between, governors this week are proposing huge budget cuts to tackle looming crises at the state level.
“There’s sort of two crises,” at the state level, says James Pethokoukis, columnist at Reuters Breaking Views. “You’d have to have a tremendous boom over the next two years to really take the state fiscal crisis off the [...]
Please consider Vallejo Plan Would Give Unsecured Creditors 5 to 20 Cents on the Dollar. Unsecured creditors will receive 5 cents to 20 cents on the dollar for their claims under a reorganization plan Vallejo, Calif., filed Tuesday in federal court.
The plan to exit bankruptcy outlines the reorganization of debt the city owes its largest creditors, Union Bank and National Public Finance Guarantee. It also [...]
Via Pension Pulse.
A generation ago, when Ronald Reagan was president, the accounting rule makers forced American companies to come clean on the cost of the pension plans they were promising to employees. That decision, perhaps more than any other, heralded the eventual demise of defined-benefit pensions for employees of American companies.
Now something very similar may be in store for public [...]