For those who have been paying attention, much has written and said about the New York State Teachers Retirement System (NYSTRS). Is it underfunded? Will it face bankruptcy if things do not change? School district (i.e. taxpayer) contribution to the NYSTRS is predicted to continue to increase. Some predict the contribution rate could double by 2016. In the following article from Newsday
the author writes, "While the tacher pension fund is comfortable predicting asset returns 40-50 years into the future, it refuses to provide employers with useful guidance on where their pensions costs might be headed within the next decade. As a result, school districts throughout the states are negotiating three to five-year teachers' contracts without knowing how much more pensions might cost three to five years down the line."
Anyone concerned about the solvency of the TRS should be paying attention and writing to Comptroller DiNapoli insisting that he "recognize the real long-term cost of teacher pensions" and that he issue long-term projections of annual required contributions (by school districts).
Retirees, some of whom could live as long as 40 years in retirement, are counting on their pensions to get them through their post employment years; therefore, realistic projections must be made so the pension fund is properly supported and so schools can negotiate contracts that reflect likely future costs.