MD treasurer opposes governor’s $100M cut in pension contributions

By Len Lazarick | Maryland Reporter

Maryland Treasurer Nancy Kopp told lawmakers Thursday that she opposed Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposed $100 million cut in the pension contribution, and said it would undermine trust by the state’s bond rating agencies.

“I think this is a very difficult thing to defend with the rating agencies,” Kopp told the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Public Safety and Administration.

Kopp was testifying as chairman of the State Retirement and Pension System Board of Trustees. As treasurer, she is also the top state official that handles Maryland’s bond issues and deals with the three New York firms that rate them.

In 2011, the Legislature and governor made major reforms in pensions for state employees and teachers that included higher contributions and lower benefits. At that time, the state promised in law to set aside $300 million from those savings to beef up Maryland’s chronically underfunded pension fund.

at Maryland Reporter.

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Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and host of the Plain Talk Podcast which you can subscribe to by clicking here.

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