August 8, 2010 |
When they introduced it in 1999, Philadelphia officials called it "the Winnebago plan. " That nickname for the retirement program known as DROP symbolized what it was supposed to do - give longtime city workers a retirement check big enough that they could buy a Winnebago or fulfill some other small dream, paid for with their own pension money. And, everyone agreed at the time, officials would end the Deferred Option Retirement Program, or DROP, if, after three years, it turned out that it cost the city money.
February 18, 1990 |
Last year was a very good year for Chester County's pension fund. For the first time, the fund cracked the $50 million level, buoyed by stock holdings that appreciated 36 percent in the general rebound on Wall Street during 1989. Investment performance last year capped a six-year trend that has seen a doubling in the county's pension investments that are set aside for future retirees. But, the growth in the Chester County Retirement Fund to $53.19 million by year's end will have little impact on the pension benefits for county employees.
October 26, 1987 |
As the aftershocks of last week's market crash unfold in coming months, the pain felt so deeply by individual investors could spread to others. Many people may believe that, because they didn't own any stock directly, the swift and sharp decline in stock prices can't possibly affect them. However, virtually everyone who is covered by a pension plan has a stake in how well the stock market performs. Pension plans are significant institutional players in the stock market.
February 20, 1986 |
A dramatic growth in investment returns from the city's employee pension fund during 1985 will save at least $5 million in next year's city budget, officials estimate. The fund achieved a 29.7 percent return on investments last year, nearly a three-fold increase over the 10.7 percent return of 1984, boosting assets from $932 million to a record $1.2 billion, according to Deputy Director of Finance Curtis O. Townsend. Townsend, who is also the city's pension fund assets manager, and City Controller Joseph Vignola, a member of the Board of Pensions and Retirement, attributed the good return to a boom year on Wall Street and to the city's hiring last year of 10 private pension-fund consultants to diversify and manage fund investments.
October 4, 1987 |
Yeadon property owners will have to contribute fewer of their tax dollars to the police pension fund next year. Councilman Aris Karalis announced Thursday that this year's actuarial study of the pension showed that the council could slash the borough's contribution by more than half - from $78,000 to $31,000. The study is done every other year, as required by state law. The council has been working for five years to improve the status of the pension fund, which was found to be underfunded.
October 12, 1990 |
City Councilman David Cohen reportedly is interested in using the $1.7 billion city pension fund to bail out the cash-short city operating budget - but the idea appears to have little support. Mayor Goode told reporters yesterday that Cohen had raised the possibility Wednesday afternoon at a meeting between Council members and the mayor. Goode said he didn't know enough about the idea to discuss it, and Cohen declined comment yesterday on any aspect of the city's financial problems.
October 20, 1987 |
The record-shattering plunge of Wall Street stocks yesterday had city finance officials scurrying to the phones to ask the professionals who manage the city's pension fund about its financial health. But the prognosis won't be in until at least today. Some $730 million - nearly half of the pension fund's value - was in stocks as of the end of September, and the rest was invested in municipal bonds and real estate, said Peter Crescitelli, acting director of the city's Board of Pensions and Retirement.
November 20, 1990 |
A last-ditch lobbying effort by pensioners and the city's fire and police unions may spell death for a measure deemed crucial to the city's short-term financial future. Council members have been inundated with phone calls from angry union members and city employees opposing a plan for the city to borrow money from their pension fund. It appears enough Council members have abandoned their support of the bill that would permit the municipal pension fund to make the loan to place the legislation in danger.
January 4, 1992 |
A Common Pleas Court judge approved a settlement yesterday deferring $19 million in payments by Philadelphia to its pension board. City officials say this will free about $30 million to pay overdue bills from health and human service providers. The agreement, signed by Judge Abraham J. Gafni, requires the city to pay $10 million to the pension fund on Feb. 3, and roughly $9.3 million on Feb. 16, plus 11 percent interest. A $10 million payment was made Thursday. City Solicitor Charisse R. Lillie said the delay in payment would boost the city's weekly cash balance to an average of about $62 million, about twice the cushion that the city would have been left with had it been forced to pay all of the $29.3 million on Thursday.
November 21, 1987 |
Philadelphia's municipal pension fund suffered a $151.6 million paper loss as a result of the Oct. 19 stock market crash, but pension officials this week said the drop would have no affect on either taxpayers' contributions to the fund or on municipal retirees. The drop in value represented about 10 percent of the $1.5 billion fund, which provides benefits for about 25,000 retirees and their beneficiaries. Between Sept. 30 and Oct. 30, the market value of stocks owned by the fund declined from $732.