The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

January 28, 2013

Budget chief: Pension reforms essential


Associated Press

HARRISBURG — Gov. Tom Corbett will “very likely” propose cutting future pension benefits for current school employees and state workers in the state budget plan he will present to lawmakers next week, his chief budget adviser said Monday.

Budget Secretary Charles Zogby, all but confirming a cost-cutting approach that the administration first floated in the fall despite questions about its legality, said decisive steps must be taken to rein in taxpayers’ fast-growing share of pension costs.

“We’ve got to pay for our obligations and we need to look at a rebalancing of our pension obligations ... if we’re going to meet our needs without inflicting deep cuts elsewhere in the budget,” he said at a Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon.

The public’s contributions to the state’s two major public pension funds is expected to increase from $1.5 billion in the fiscal year that ends in June to nearly $3 billion in 2014-15

and more than $5 billion by

2019-20.

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