Pension benefits are one of the most important benefits to the Granite State workforce and the strength of New Hampshire’s economy. Yet here and across the nation, public retirement benefits have been under attack, with the intention to eliminate or drastically cut defined-benefit pension plans for public employees such as teachers, other school employees and state and local government employees. For both public and private sector workers, defined-benefit pension plans provide the strongest guarantee for income security in retirement.
Public employees’ retirement benefits are legislated, giving New Hampshire legislators the power to reduce benefits and shift more costs onto workers. Recent legislative actions affecting employees covered by the New Hampshire Retirement System (NHRS) include:
- Cost-shifting employer contributions to employees (resulting in an effective pay cut for employees);
- Eliminating a funding source for cost-of-living-adjustments for current retirees (resulting in seniors having less to live on each year);
- Changing the definition of earnable compensation;
- Increasing the length of service before an employee is eligible to retire with full benefits;
- Increasing the length of service before an employee is considered vested.
All of these changes result in decreased retirement security for those who have spent their career providing public service.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
New Hampshire Retirement Security Coalition: Pension Facts for New Hampshire