Our goal is to provide a secure, stable, retirement for all police officers and firefighters.
For the past several months, the City has been working closely with Representative Dan Flynn, Chair of the House Pensions Committee in the TX State Legislature, to amend the State law that created the Pension.
On March 7, Chairman Flynn proposed a bill that will serve as a great first step in solving this crisis. Most importantly, the bill proposes changes to the governance of the Pension, because the Chairman recognizes that the process by which benefits are determined must change to prevent this from happening again. The City of Dallas agrees that accountability must be restored, and that taxpayers, who contribute the vast majority of funds to the Pension, must have a say. Taxpayers are willing to pay their fair share to protect our police officers and firefighters, but we must have open and fair governance. Our goal is to put in place a Board of financial experts and professionals who will protect pension benefits and taxpayers alike.
Chairman Flynn’s bill gives us a path to save the pension in the coming years. In addition to governance changes, it increases City and employee contributions and changes the benefits of the plan. In total, the bill solves all but about $450-$600 million of the $3.5 billion unfunded liability. To close the gap, the bill requires that the new Board consider and adopt rules requiring the equitable return of excessive interest or COLA credited to a DROP account.
The City appreciates Chairman Flynn’s leadership. We will continue to work with him to fine-tune the bill, protect pension benefits, maintain a market-competitive plan for our public safety workforce, and ensure all parties pay their fair share to save the Pension.