Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Can't pay, wont pay?

Seems local councils are out to pick the pockets of taxpayers again to plug a black hole in their pension schemes.

Every household in Britain will need to pay an extra £200 a year to plug the black hole in local Government pensions, figures have suggested.
Latest research suggests the deficit in Local Government Pension Schemes in England may have more than doubled in the past three years to £100 billion.
It compares with a shortfall of £42 billion three years ago, according to the data published by pension consultant John Ralfe.
He suggested taxpayers and scheme members will have to pay some £4 billion extra a year into local authority pensions to plug the gap over the next couple of decades.
It equates to an increase of two-thirds in pension contributions, from £300 to £500 a year for every household.
Mr Ralfe attributed the widening gap to the performance of the stock market, saying pension promises of local Government could not be met without additional contributions from taxpayers.
This is the major problem in final salary schemes and it's not going to go away unless something is done to deal with it fairly radically. Not that I expect the various public service unions to react well to radically. Ending these schemes would be one way to tackle it, increasing members contributions too, increasing the retirement age for public servants would be another one, no pension till you're 65+ might just crack it.
The way they are going though is to tap into ordinary residents and pick their pockets in the middle of a recession. Guess how well that's going to go down.

Most people only want to pay for the services they see councils providing that are useful. Emptying the bins, lighting the steets, repairing the pavements, parks, leisure etc. They don't see the need to pay for town twinning trips, idiotic green initiatives, diversity co-ordinators, council propaganda (news letters), race relations initiatives, translation services etc. If they were scrapped and councils streamlined, perhaps the increases could be met from that.
I'm not going to hold my breath on that though. I'm just sick and tired of having my pocket picked for stuff I have no interest in paying for and council pensions is one of them I pay my own pension, why can't they pay for theirs?

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