Monday, March 11, 2013

Stanford professor warns Costa Mesa about pension debt

Oh brother!  Here we go. Just when you think it's safe to get back into the water.

While some California cities have declared bankruptcy or slashed public safety spending as retirement costs rose, nothing of the sort is imminent in Costa Mesa. But Nation told officials they should be more realistic about future risks.

"If you don't deal with this, you won't have anything that you care about," said Nation, a professor of public policy. Officials need to consider raising taxes, lowering benefits for current employees, and sharing more of the cost with employees, Nation told the council. But they are legally constrained from taking some of the more drastic steps, such as reducing current employees' pension plans.

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