Tag Archives: pension history

Census Education Finance Data for FY 2014 (Compared with FY 2002)

The Census Bureau’s annual education finance data was released for FY 2014 on Friday June 11. The data shows that NYC spent $24,004 per student that year, slightly below the average of the Downstate Suburbs ($25,041) but far higher than the average for New Jersey ($19,636), Connecticut ($19,388), Massachusetts ($16,884) and Maryland ($15,812).   The Northeast Corridor is a generally high wage, high cost of living area. Even adjusting for this, however, New York City’s average adjusted expenditure per student, at $18,764, was nearly 50 percent higher than the U.S. average of $12,625. On an unadjusted basis New York City spent $14,665 per student on instructional (mostly teacher) wages, salaries and benefits alone, or $293,300 per 20 students and $175,980 per 12 students. And this was at a time when the contract for NYC teachers had been expired for years; spending has soared since, as a result of retroactive pay for past years including FY 2014.

One finds the same pattern for Upstate New York. There, spending averaged $19,428 per student in urban counties and $20,490 per student in rural counties. This compares with the U.S. average of $12,625, the Ohio average of $12,907, and the Pennsylvania average of $16,585, and the Vermont average of $20,488. Links to detailed spreadsheets with data for every school district in New York and New Jersey, and per-student revenues and expenditures by category of revenue and expenditure, follow a discussion of where the data comes from and how it was compiled. As is my custom, I’m going to provide the spreadsheets now, think about them for a while, and then provide my analysis and express my opinion. If you want the facts without the opinion, this is the post for you.

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Updated Long Term Pension Data for New York And New Jersey: The Large Plans for Most Public Employees

Note, I recently posted an updated analysis of Census Bureau data through 2016 here.

https://larrylittlefield.wordpress.com/2017/07/02/long-term-pension-data-for-new-york-and-new-jersey-to-2016-the-large-plans-for-most-public-employees-with-commentary-on-hedge-funds/

Read that one, rather than the one below with data through 2013.

New York City and New Jersey, like most places, have separate pension plans for teachers, police officers, and firefighter, and large plans for everyone else. This post is about updated Census Bureau data, for the years 1957 to 2012, for the New York City Employees Retirement System (NYCERS), which also covers New York City transit workers, the New York (state) Public Employees Pension and Retirement System, which also covers local government workers (including police officers and firefighters) in the rest of New York State, and the New Jersey Public Employees Retirement System.

In general the findings are the same as they were in this post last year, since one year of data isn’t going to make a big difference for something as slow moving and inexorable as pension funding.

https://larrylittlefield.wordpress.com/2013/12/12/pensions-for-non-teachers-a-slightly-different-road-to-ruin-in-new-york-city/

Unless there is a big retroactive pension increase, and its cost is actually admitted to. One big thing that did happen in 2012: there was a huge increase in taxpayer contributions to the New York City Employees Retirement System, balanced by a reduction in contributions to the New York City Teachers Retirement system. And one thing I learned this year: there have been more early retirement incentives in the crippled New Jersey public retirement system than I was previously aware of. Further discussion, and a spreadsheet with a series of charts follow after the break .

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Teacher Pensions: The Road To Ruin in New Jersey and New York City But Not (Yet) The Rest of New York State

Note:  this post has been updated.  Rather than read this one, read the newer post with updated information through FY 2016 located here.

https://larrylittlefield.wordpress.com/2017/07/29/long-term-pension-data-for-new-york-and-new-jersey-to-2016-teacher-pensions/

As noted in my previous post, I have downloaded and arranged all the data the U.S. Census Bureau has collected since 1957 on currently active public employee pension plans in New York and New Jersey.  I wanted a historical record of how future generations were left with this mess, a record older generations and the political class have little incentive to compile.  This is the first of a handful of posts using this data; hopefully someone else will do even more with it sooner or later. This post is about the New York City, New York State, and New Jersey teacher pension plans, which also cover some related employees.

The data shows that in New York City the road to ruin was paved primarily with a series of extremely expensive pension benefit increases, employee contribution cuts, and one time “incentives” that vastly inflated the amount the NYC teacher pension plans paid out.  Not shown by this data is a similarly large increase in the cost of retiree health insurance, as the city was forced to pay retirees for many additional years before Medicare picked up most of the burden.  The pension benefit increases for the New Jersey teacher pension plan and the New York State teacher pension plan, which covers teachers in the rest of New York State, were not as frequent or as costly.  New York City taxpayers may have also underfunded the city teacher pension plan, relative to the state, after a New York State Court of Appeals decision prevented the state pension plans from doing the same.  The NYC teacher pension plan has also had lower investment returns over the long term.  In New Jersey, taxpayer pension funding virtually disappeared starting in the mid-1990s, and is the primary cause of the crisis there.  Further discussion and a spreadsheet with a series of charts are below.

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