Friday, April 22, 2011

Dysfunction Junction

In a sense there is no news at all to comment on in the latest episode of the pension soap opera down on the 5th floor. Hard to see how the outcome down at the Pittsburgh Parking Authority board would have been any different than is being reported. Great quote in describing the state of all things pension related for the City of Pittsburgh as "extreme dysfunction".  Points for parsimony.

Fun with words aside, there is something to read between the lines.  City news junkies follow along with me. It seems clear that no matter what happened on New Year's Eve, my reading of the news is that there is no intention on the part of the administration to facilitate council's plan as envisioned.  Sanctioned or not by the PERC it may may be.

Now realize that it really does not matter what council adds up, the whole plan depends on the city's own actuary certifying that the pension's assets, to include the NPV of the notionally dedicated parking tax funding stream, amount to 50% of the calculated liabilities. Realize that there are lots of judgment calls, let alone a lot of city-supplied data, that goes into the actuary's calculations.

Sooo..  If the city really does not want the actuary's calculation to show 50%, then there is a decent shot that the outcome of the determinative calculation will not be 50%.

Won't that be interesting.?

Think that is a screwey way to think of it?  Not as strange as some other things that have been going on in city pension world without much comment. Recently the pension board did not specify the value of its investment portfolio at the end of 2010 because that information might look bad as the state evaluates whether to take over the system in the first place.  An amazing position, and more amazing that they could get away with it.   

The reality is that at least some in the Harrisburg are preparing to take over the city's pension system.  Anyone asking if the city responded to the state's recent request for more data sooner?


Blogger rich10e said...

this whole deal was based on hopes and prayers, smoke and mirrors!!!
I'm still surprised the state went for it!!!

Friday, April 22, 2011 9:45:00 PM  
Anonymous MH said...

At least when the riots start (and I have no idea which side will start them), the asphalt is in bad enough shape that nobody will have to waste time trying to pry a chunk to throw.

Saturday, April 23, 2011 2:52:00 PM  
Blogger rich10e said...

MH, ever the optimist, huh?!

Saturday, April 23, 2011 7:54:00 PM  
Blogger Bram Reichbaum said...

I don't follow the motive for massaging the numbers so that we DO get taken over ... at least not since that would be determined after primary election day.

Sunday, April 24, 2011 11:59:00 AM  

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