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NEWS
February 3, 1987
I do not think it right that the Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement should invest funds in a foreign country. These funds were earned from Philadelphia taxpayers and should be invested here where plenty of Philadelphians need jobs, homes, etc. Don't throw the ball out of bounds. Phyllis M. Carpenter Philadelphia.
NEWS
January 9, 1987 | By HOWARD SCHNEIDER, Daily News Staff Writer
City Council yesterday overrode Mayor Goode's veto of a pension plan that saves $24 million annually through reduced benefits for new employees. The override vote came only after Council members agreed to back away from a controversial provision that would have let elected officials qualify for pensions more quickly then municipal workers. However, a provision that almost doubles the rate at which elected officials' benefits accumulate will apparently remain in place; the cost to the city is to be offset through higher payroll deductions.
NEWS
March 7, 1989 | By Jodi Enda, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
In a decision expected to double the retirement benefits for some judges and cost the state more than $100 million, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that the legislature illegally reduced the pensions of most state jurists. The ruling, dated Friday but released yesterday, could increase pensions for 287 of the 388 judges now on state courts, according to the court administrator's office. The remaining judges already were guaranteed higher pensions. "I think, in all honesty, while it's a victory for the judges, it's a victory for a free and independent justice system," said Henry T. Reath, an attorney for the judges.
NEWS
May 18, 1986 | By Thomas J. Gibbons Jr., Inquirer Staff Writer
Police arrested the executive director of the Philadelphia Board of Pensions and Retirement late Friday night after he swung a large wrench at them when they sought to question him about reckless driving in his 1984 Ferrari, authorities said. The city official, Anthony Witlin, 37, was punched in the eye and subdued by one of the officers whom Witlin had tried to hit with the 15-inch wrench, police detectives said. Police said the arrest climaxed a tangled series of events that began after valet parking officials at Garden State Park in Cherry Hill alleged tha Witlin had aimed his car at them and then sped off. He was then pursued, at various times, by race track personnel, Port Authority police and eventually Philadelphia police.
NEWS
December 13, 1990 | By Marc Duvoisin and Dan Meyers, Inquirer Staff Writers
Racing to secure commitments of cash by tomorrow, the Goode administration began negotiations yesterday on a $300 million loan package that offers investors extraordinary safeguards, including first claim on city tax revenues. Representatives of the municipal pension fund, the state teachers' retirement system and a consortium of local banks met with city officials for 3 1/2 hours to discuss purchasing short-term notes. The talks were scheduled to resume today. Key issues remain unresolved, sources said, notably a demand by the banks that they be guaranteed repayment before other investors, and their insistence on long-range reforms in city government, including a control board to oversee municipal finances.
NEWS
August 7, 1986 | By JUAN GONZALEZ, Daily News Staff Writer
Five of eight former Department of Licenses and Inspection employees, who were arrested two weeks ago on charges of soliciting bribes to fix inspection reports, are seeking city pensions. Four of the men applied for the pensions yesterday and one did so last week, according to Peter G. Crescitelli, assistant director of the Board of Pensions and Retirement. But officials in the city's Law Department said the men will be ineligible for pensions until the charges against them are resolved in court.
NEWS
July 23, 1988 | By JOSEPH R. DAUGHEN, Daily News Staff Writer
The State Employees Retirement Board has refused to grant pensions to six former Philadelphia judges who took money from the Roofers Union and has stopped the pensions of two others implicated in the scandal. In explaining the first such action ever taken by the board, Acting Chairman William J. Moran said the state constitution prohibits the payment of pensions to judges who have been removed for misconduct. Savings to the retirement system were estimated at more than $250,000 annually.
NEWS
May 27, 1992
The penalties for being a judge on the take in Pennsylvania just got a little bit lighter. The state's Supreme Court ruled last week that four former Philadelphia judges were entitled to their pensions, even though they were forced off the bench for taking cash from the roofers' union in the mid-'80s. One of the judges had actually been convicted of extorting bribes in return for fixing cases. But no matter. Reversing lower court decisions, as well as the State Employees' Retirement Board, the justices said the state constitution never envisioned yanking the pensions of judges who misbehave.
NEWS
November 7, 2013 | BY MORGAN ZALOT, Daily News Staff Writer zalotm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5928
IN THE LATEST of a series of cost-cutting measures, the financially strapped Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced yesterday that it will freeze the pensions of lay employees beginning in July. Through an analysis of financial liabilities conducted last year, the Archdiocese determined that the Lay Employees' Retirement Plan was underfunded by about $150 million, according to a news release from the Archdiocese. "While the funding level is sufficient to meet the current and medium-term benefit payments, action must be taken now to ensure that the Plan can meet its long-term obligations to future retirees," the Archdiocese's statement read.
NEWS
June 30, 1989 | By Katharine Seelye, Inquirer Staff Writer
In rearguing its case against an increase in judicial pensions, the state Attorney General's Office has called for two state Supreme Court justices with a direct financial interest in the outcome to disqualify themselves when the court reconsiders the case. "Unless the people are confident that legal issues will be decided fairly and without reference to personal prejudice or the financial interests of the judges," the state wrote in its new brief, "their trust in the system will collapse.
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NEWS
August 18, 2016 | By Andrew Seidman, TRENTON BUREAU
TRENTON - Gov. Christie offered his "unequivocal" support for Israel on Tuesday, signing into law legislation that prohibits the state Treasury Department from investing public employee pension funds in companies that boycott the U.S. ally. The law is a rejection of the "boycott, divestment, and sanctions" movement against Israel that Palestinians and other supporters launched a decade ago to, as the movement puts it, "pressure Israel to comply with international law. " "Unequivocal, unashamed, unapologetic support of Israel is the policy of the State of New Jersey - and should be the policy of the United States of America, and hopefully will be in the years going forward," Christie, a Republican, said at a Statehouse news conference.
BUSINESS
August 16, 2016 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Staff Writer
New Jersey's generous but underfunded public pension system bought billions of dollars' worth of hedge funds in the years after other states began having second thoughts about the risky, high-fee funds. Now it's getting out, also late. Pennsylvania invested billions and laid out hundreds of millions of dollars for hedge-fund fees, starting in the early 2000s. It was a hedge-fund pioneer. "I was open-minded," then-state workers' pension system (SERS) chairman Nicholas Maiale recalled, when he stepped down from the job after Gov. Tom Corbett declined to reappoint him in 2013.
NEWS
August 15, 2016
Dan White is a senior economist at Moody's Analytics in West Chester and an adviser on pensions to the National League of Cities In the back-and-forth drama of Pennsylvania's budget woes, nothing has been more ever-present than pension reform. The compromises involved in true reform have put the concept out of reach for several years, but now the legislature and Gov. Wolf have put an ambitious emphasis on reform for the fall. This is laudable, long overdue, and essential for getting us back on a more sustainable budget track.
NEWS
August 10, 2016 | By Maddie Hanna, TRENTON BUREAU
New Jersey's powerful teachers' union vowed to retaliate against the state's top elected Democrat on Monday as a deadline to put a question on November's ballot that would make state payments into the pension system a constitutional requirement passed without action. At a protest outside the Statehouse, New Jersey Education Association president Wendell Steinhauer faulted Senate President Stephen Sweeney - a Gloucester County Democrat expected to run for governor in 2017 - for not posting the amendment for a vote.
NEWS
August 9, 2016
ISSUE | N.J. PENSIONS State must pay up New Jersey's transportation funding is a priority to help fix our ailing infrastructure, but the teachers' pension funding is a greater priority and has long been a problem ("Sweeney: No transport fund fix, no pension vote," Friday). All state government employees deserve the pensions they paid into and were promised. We chose to participate in a plan with a promised payout because we believed in our elected officials. Those officials must come to the decision that they owe the state pension plans the required money.
NEWS
August 6, 2016 | By Maddie Hanna, TRENTON BUREAU
TRENTON - Without a resolution to a transportation funding stalemate, Senate President Stephen Sweeney said Thursday that he remained opposed to calling a vote on a proposed constitutional amendment that would require the state to make bigger payments into its pension system. Sweeney (D., Gloucester) did not explicitly rule out posting the amendment Monday - the deadline for a vote on the measure, which public-sector unions are calling for, to get on the November ballot. But Sweeney said he would not support the amendment before reaching a deal to replenish the depleted Transportation Trust Fund.
BUSINESS
July 28, 2016 | By Erin Arvedlund, Staff Writer
Take pension money and invest it in local projects that produce a guaranteed return, such as a toll road. That was one of the ideas suggested by former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley to fix the sorry state of public pensions nationally. Those in New Jersey and Pennsylvania were the nation's worst funded last year. "There are opportunities we've yet to realize, such as having our pension funds invest in local, sustainable projects with a double bottom line," said O'Malley, one of the few politicians to reverse a state's pension deficit.
NEWS
July 27, 2016 | By Karen Langley, HARRISBURG BUREAU
HARRISBURG - State examiners will launch a fresh look at the pension systems that manage about $78 billion in assets for hundreds of thousands of public employees and retirees, the state's top auditor said Monday. Auditor General Eugene DePasquale told reporters that he is particularly interested in fees paid to outside investment managers. "We're paying them a lot of money," DePasquale said in a conference call. "What are we getting in return?" He announced the planned audits days after federal prosecutors filed false-statement charges against former state Treasurer Barbara Hafer and fraud counts against a Philadelphia-area businessman, Richard Ireland, over contracts he arranged for the management of state money.
NEWS
July 22, 2016 | By Claudia Vargas and Tricia L. Nadolny, STAFF WRITERS
When the Kenney administration announced its new contract with the city's blue-collar union on Friday, it suggested that changes to the union's retirement plan would benefit the city's underfunded pension fund. "Making the pension fund sustainable has been a key goal of my administration from the beginning," Mayor Kenney said in the announcement of the $175 million four-year contract. But when questioned this week, administration officials could not say by how much the pension deficit would be reduced given the changes.
NEWS
July 20, 2016 | By Olivia Exstrum, Staff Writer
Michael Donatucci was known as a man for others, a value, instilled in him through his Jesuit education, that shone through to everyone he met. "Anybody that ever met him always said he was such a gentleman," said his father, Ronald, Philadelphia's longtime register of wills. "I was blessed to know him for 31 years. " Mr. Donatucci, chief investment officer of the city's Pension Fund, took his own life Friday night, July 15. He would have turned 31 on Tuesday. He was found dead in his home by his fiancee, Meghan Klein, whom he met about 10 years ago in Margate, N.J., where the Donatucci family has a summer home.
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