Report: Pension system needs overhaul

Aug 11, 2013 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Lowell Sun

The Middlesex and Worcester county pension systems and the city of Fitchburg were each given a D rating and the city of Lowell received a C on a new ratings website by the Pioneer Institute, a research group that says it wants to bring new transparency and accountability to the state's pension systems.

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Droopyballs

Gardner, MA

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#21
Aug 14, 2013
 
Really wrote:
<quoted text>
You got lost somewhere in the confusion. Do yourself a favor a reacquaint yourself with the positions of others. Darn Tootin was in opposition of (his/her perception of) excessive benefits of municipal and state law enforcement. He is fully employed, a property owner, and taxpayer. This was established several years back - before he changed his name.
I'm neutral here, but if there's a discussion to be had, it ought to be on level ground. He (she?)'s not the one to go after for living the welfare life and is allowed the valid point here.
Going forward we are all going to feel this pinch for underfunded pension systems and need to be heard in the discussion, so helpful comments welcome.
It is still curious why this legislature gets so close to reform (remember the EBT photo debacle?) and withdraws.
They cannot reform the system because the welfare people say that is discrimination. When the welfare was limited to only certain items such as cereal, bread, milk they stated that is discrimination because they should be like anyone else that can buy top of the line steaks, ribs and seafood.

The ebt cards replaced the paper food stamps because they stated it was not fair that other people would know they were on welfare when using the paper food stamps and that is discrimination. They wanted to be treated equal and the same as everyone else. The ebt cards were not about making the system simpler.

Reverend Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton always jumps in when there is a possible welfare reform.

How come the NAACP or ACLU never jumps in when a white person is discriminated against or called a racial slur? Hmmmmmmmmmm.
do some reasearch first

Westminster, MA

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#22
Aug 14, 2013
 

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Debbie wrote:
You should see Antonucci's pension projection,holly cow
right, the country is hurt by POOR people. or maybe your just a racist trying not to mention the fact. because every time people mention lazy bums on welfare, its hispanic or blacks. as far as cutting all help services you obviously got no idea how all the systems work together hand and hand, as to why they allow such waste. get educated, because what will you do if they did this and all the poor (which is most the country atm) got nothing and just become violent, looking for food, shelter, ect? of course NOBODY GIVES A SHIT, GET A JOB! right? yeah so easy coming from those who already work and got that " i worked hard all my life, whats your excuse?" ethic. you must be living in the 1900s because corporate america is out of control. and any job degree or not is infected with greed and needs to meet quotas. they dont give 2 craps about you, or them. if poor people bother you, move to canada. cause people like you are IDIOTS pissed you work for shit and blame the poor you cant handle a tax by massachusetts were you LIVE! get off the piss poor judgment job, and look up the real deals:

irs scandals
monsonto act
1913 federal reserve act
the houseing bubble of 2008
alex jones "the fall of the republic" & "the obamadeception"

just to name a few topics and videos you can watch, unless your the type so convinced your right you wont even bother to look. not even for the sake of a argument being won by facts, but to inform you regardless of your opinion of why our entire country is fighting amongst itself, instead of realizing the awful truth. minimum wage should be around 18-22 an hour. thats a fact, but inflation, and greed changed that. find it funny minimum wages jobs only pay $8 an hour 12 years later, and they only raised it about a buck? while ALL other prices skyrocket? do you also believe gas is were it should be? your a fool then.

it isnt the poor your idiot, it is the government run by foreign banks who cannot fail, who run this country into the ground, and anybody desperate enough, or greedy enough will take orders WITHOUT question for a chance to keep their loved ones safe and fed. you cant change the fact as well, open amnesty, illegals now "undocumented citizens" and the almost automatic hand outs to illegals as well, regardless if they need it or not. its the fact our government is TRYING to collapse america for financial reasons. it will never fully be gone, just remade while still upholding and using laws from a obsolete and corrupt system to make it seem they did things by the books.

you blame poor why? cause its easy? cause you can? cause you work? so they never worked? they never tried or kept having to go from one job to another because they either close up shop and ship over seas, they dont want to pay $3000 a year per employee for the new obamacare to kick in this fall? or is it because they realize how f'd up our country is and realize the american dollar is almost worthless?

any of those can fit, and they all still show that it is our leaders who can stop this, and allow this. they do nothing but talk. and nothing is ever followed up, mainstream media blacking out topics, journalists being threatened, nsa spying, ect. all of which has been done FOREVER, just like poor people have needed help....forever. get mad at yourself for even talking this way, and even more so for not having a good job. theres school. theres help financially to get there. if you already work to just stay afloat, you fucked up. not the poor. and they arn;t the problem. you are. and your inability to adapt to a ever changing world. too proud for your boots. sorry if this si harsh, but its true. you look like an idiot after this statement. move if you dont like it...
do some reasearch first

Westminster, MA

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#23
Aug 14, 2013
 

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right, the country is hurt by POOR people. or maybe your just a racist trying not to mention the fact. because every time people mention lazy bums on welfare, its hispanic or blacks. as far as cutting all help services you obviously got no idea how all the systems work together hand and hand, as to why they allow such waste. get educated, because what will you do if they did this and all the poor (which is most the country atm) got nothing and just become violent, looking for food, shelter, ect? of course NOBODY GIVES A SHIT, GET A JOB! right? yeah so easy coming from those who already work and got that " i worked hard all my life, whats your excuse?" ethic. you must be living in the 1900s because corporate america is out of control. and any job degree or not is infected with greed and needs to meet quotas. they dont give 2 craps about you, or them. if poor people bother you, move to canada. cause people like you are IDIOTS pissed you work for shit and blame the poor you cant handle a tax by massachusetts were you LIVE! get off the piss poor judgment job, and look up the real deals:

irs scandals
monsonto act
1913 federal reserve act
the houseing bubble of 2008
alex jones "the fall of the republic" & "the obamadeception"

just to name a few topics and videos you can watch, unless your the type so convinced your right you wont even bother to look. not even for the sake of a argument being won by facts, but to inform you regardless of your opinion of why our entire country is fighting amongst itself, instead of realizing the awful truth. minimum wage should be around 18-22 an hour. thats a fact, but inflation, and greed changed that. find it funny minimum wages jobs only pay $8 an hour 12 years later, and they only raised it about a buck? while ALL other prices skyrocket? do you also believe gas is were it should be? your a fool then.

it isnt the poor your idiot, it is the government run by foreign banks who cannot fail, who run this country into the ground, and anybody desperate enough, or greedy enough will take orders WITHOUT question for a chance to keep their loved ones safe and fed. you cant change the fact as well, open amnesty, illegals now "undocumented citizens" and the almost automatic hand outs to illegals as well, regardless if they need it or not. its the fact our government is TRYING to collapse america for financial reasons. it will never fully be gone, just remade while still upholding and using laws from a obsolete and corrupt system to make it seem they did things by the books.

you blame poor why? cause its easy? cause you can? cause you work? so they never worked? they never tried or kept having to go from one job to another because they either close up shop and ship over seas, they dont want to pay $3000 a year per employee for the new obamacare to kick in this fall? or is it because they realize how f'd up our country is and realize the american dollar is almost worthless?

any of those can fit, and they all still show that it is our leaders who can stop this, and allow this. they do nothing but talk. and nothing is ever followed up, mainstream media blacking out topics, journalists being threatened, nsa spying, ect. all of which has been done FOREVER, just like poor people have needed help....forever. get mad at yourself for even talking this way, and even more so for not having a good job. theres school. theres help financially to get there. if you already work to just stay afloat, you fucked up. not the poor. and they arn;t the problem. you are. and your inability to adapt to a ever changing world. too proud for your boots. sorry if this si harsh, but its true. you look like an idiot after this statement. move if you dont like it...
Droopyballs

Gardner, MA

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#24
Aug 14, 2013
 

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I'm sorry but welfare people are not poor people. They are people who choose not to work.

People are now working two jobs to get what the welfare people get for free.

There will never be any justification stating that the working class is the problem vs the welfare class that does not want to work.

I have never heard anyone defend the welfare class unless they are on welfare themselves. I have never heard anyone criticize the working people unless they choose not to work themselves.

Good try but not even close.
Really

Leominster, MA

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#25
Aug 15, 2013
 

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Hit a nerve there, didn't I? I speak for many that are frustrated when we stand in line at the checkout behind someone using an EBT card while talking on the latest smartphone and find them in the parking lot loading their groceries into brand new Mercedes SUV, while we're reaching for the keys to our 10-year-old cars.

No doubt the waste and corruption on the federal level is enormous compared to our paltry state troubles. But that is the point. We should be able to take back some control at the state level. Let's at least start to look for it. I have been self-employed since my third layoff because I couldn't take the feeling of the lack of total lack of power in the employment situation. This is just as bad. This is personal. I struggle to make a living, only to support others who have learned the system and it isn't fair to me. If I don't work, I don't eat. Should I just stop working and stick my hand out, too? Not my style.

I don't deny there are people who legitimately need some support from time to time. The system was built as a safety net, when there were no other options. When you just couldn't work, or you could but it wasn't enough to feed your family, or other mitigating circumstances. But, too often, it goes on for years and generations. Kids in school tell each other how it works, as overheard by their teachers. Some fly to visit family members in warmer climates for 6 months of the year, still supported by the state even though they don't even reside here during that time. I'd love an expenses-paid island vacation all winter. But I don't know how to work that system and I don't have relatives that live in those warmer territories. I am far from racist - completely color blind. Just sad that for some this lifestyle is so established, it would cause great hardship to break should reform be attempted. But, it is time.

The boom of the 80's is over. Every company and every person in the Commonwealth is feeling it. I am not for sweeping cuts by any means, just controls in the programs that are needed and do help those in need. How and where do we start?
Droopyballs

Fitchburg, MA

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#26
Aug 15, 2013
 

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Really wrote:
Hit a nerve there, didn't I? I speak for many that are frustrated when we stand in line at the checkout behind someone using an EBT card while talking on the latest smartphone and find them in the parking lot loading their groceries into brand new Mercedes SUV, while we're reaching for the keys to our 10-year-old cars.
No doubt the waste and corruption on the federal level is enormous compared to our paltry state troubles. But that is the point. We should be able to take back some control at the state level. Let's at least start to look for it. I have been self-employed since my third layoff because I couldn't take the feeling of the lack of total lack of power in the employment situation. This is just as bad. This is personal. I struggle to make a living, only to support others who have learned the system and it isn't fair to me. If I don't work, I don't eat. Should I just stop working and stick my hand out, too? Not my style.
I don't deny there are people who legitimately need some support from time to time. The system was built as a safety net, when there were no other options. When you just couldn't work, or you could but it wasn't enough to feed your family, or other mitigating circumstances. But, too often, it goes on for years and generations. Kids in school tell each other how it works, as overheard by their teachers. Some fly to visit family members in warmer climates for 6 months of the year, still supported by the state even though they don't even reside here during that time. I'd love an expenses-paid island vacation all winter. But I don't know how to work that system and I don't have relatives that live in those warmer territories. I am far from racist - completely color blind. Just sad that for some this lifestyle is so established, it would cause great hardship to break should reform be attempted. But, it is time.
The boom of the 80's is over. Every company and every person in the Commonwealth is feeling it. I am not for sweeping cuts by any means, just controls in the programs that are needed and do help those in need. How and where do we start?
I agree and I see there must be some welfare recipients on here judging us (the working class) with negative responses.

They must be scared that their comfy non-working carefree lifestyle will be taken away someday.
Droopyballs

Fitchburg, MA

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Aug 15, 2013
 

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The welfare people brought on this attention to themselves.

When a welfare mom in Market Basket, dressed like a Kardashian, lots of bling with the "Coach" pocketbook uses her ebt card for 2 carriages of groceries adding up to $400 that is just rubbing it in the taxpayers faces.

She then goes and unloads her groceries in that nice big Cadillac Escalade with those big fancy expensive rims and uses her smartphone to verify her appointment to get her nails done.

Now they must not be too smart if they are using the system. You wouldn't want to draw attention to yourself if you are on welfare.

Now they all brag about it and the mother who drove the Boston Globe truck off the bridge even told the police when she was arrested with 3 ebt cards on her that "you are the dumbasses that pay for your food".

Welfare was meant to help a person to just "get by" with the bare and basic necessities. That means no luxury items and no high end food items.

Bring back the days of going down to Broad Street and receiving their block of cheese, juice, milk and cereal.

Welfare reform will be coming and the welfare people did it to themselves.
Just Facts

Fairport, NY

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#28
Aug 15, 2013
 

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I fear that Massachusetts will never take away the goodies that have allowed people in our society to consider living on the social services systems as a justifiable way of life.

Massachusetts did enact some welfare reform back a number of years ago. I witnessed entire sections of Fitchburg clear out, when those folks headed for greener pastures elsewhere. They ar back again and larger than ever...they will not be going away.

We are seeing fundamental changes in how some people view public assistance, and these people feel entitled to use a system that is there to be used...they will take care of themselves at others expense and not think twice about it. Many of them come from cultures that trained them to think in terms of "every man for himself", so we will continue to see that here. Unless we could reshape their thinking and make them understand how things can work here, they will continue to use what is freely given to them.

So we each have two choices...be a contributor and understand the system will continue to be abused, or be people that will use the system. The fraud and abuse is very obvious but noone in authority will do anything about it....thats just the way it is.
Really

Leominster, MA

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#29
Aug 15, 2013
 

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I don't like the tone of this discussion and i don't like the term "welfare people." There are people who need help and they are getting it and there are people who blur the lines and work the system. I am only asking for a little more control in the system for the sake of those who really need it and shouldn't have to worry that it will be gone when we can't afford it. I think we can afford to assist those who need that hand when their options run out, but only when we've assisted those who have other options realize those options and wean them out. Let's just see some proposals thrown out there; time limits, caps, work at home programs (I know - admin heavy), something!
Just Facts

Fairport, NY

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Aug 15, 2013
 

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Hi Really,

When any limitations are suggested, like caps on the total benefits provided or time limits, that runs into a roadblock right away. People will say that our economy isn't robust enough for people to find jobs to get off the programs. Many of the jobs would cause people to be in a worse situation if they take a job and get off the programs, so they say it isn't fair that they should take a job that way.

I have always advocated for having a scaled system that provides only a minimal amount needed to SUPPLEMENT what someone can do on their own, and only as long as they really need it. I have always advocated for a continual review, where the recipients must provide proof every week or month that the benefits are still required. People will say that we have no right to ask for people to do that and it isn't right that they should have to prove it.

The recipients should have to prove that they need the benefits every month at the very least, and if it is discovered that they have fraudulently reported, and investigator should find out for how long, and make them pay back the benefits.

Not gonna happen in Massachusetts!!
Devils Advocate

Herndon, VA

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#31
Aug 15, 2013
 

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...and anyone receiving benefits should be subjected to random drug testing!
Debbie

Fitchburg, MA

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#32
Aug 15, 2013
 
And in my case alcohol testing
You Know Who

Holliston, MA

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#33
Aug 16, 2013
 

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Devils Advocate wrote:
...and anyone receiving benefits should be subjected to random drug testing!
I agree. Of course, common sense would also dictate that the police themselves are required to go through random alcohol testing; as well as testing for illegal steroids, marijuana, cocaine, and illegally obtained prescription drugs.

Statistics show that substance abuse is high within law enforcement; and needless to say many cops have easy access to Evidence Rooms and Lockers. And, not surprisingly, the record keeping on who went into an Evidence Room and why; as well as what exactly is stored in these Evidence Rooms; AND whether the drug that was intially put into the Evidence Room is still actually in the Evidence Room; is frequently lackluster and lacking in accountability.
Droopyballs

Fitchburg, MA

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#34
Aug 16, 2013
 

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You Know Who wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree. Of course, common sense would also dictate that the police themselves are required to go through random alcohol testing; as well as testing for illegal steroids, marijuana, cocaine, and illegally obtained prescription drugs.
Statistics show that substance abuse is high within law enforcement; and needless to say many cops have easy access to Evidence Rooms and Lockers. And, not surprisingly, the record keeping on who went into an Evidence Room and why; as well as what exactly is stored in these Evidence Rooms; AND whether the drug that was intially put into the Evidence Room is still actually in the Evidence Room; is frequently lackluster and lacking in accountability.
Even if they tested positive that means they will request therapy and rehab and the taxpayers will have to pay for that.

I agree with drug testing and if they are caught selling or buying drugs then they should lose all their benefits but they also know how to use the system and get around that.
Fitchburg

Fitchburg, MA

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#35
Aug 16, 2013
 

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Wondering wrote:
<quoted text>
Unfunded pension liabilities are crushing the states. When you say "a little more respectable" I'm not sure I agree. Politicians get support from the unions, the unions get rewarded by the politicians. Politicians just want to be re-elected, they don't care about taxpayers.
30 years of salary and then 30 years of pension. If welfare recipients did the math they would apply for a city or state job as that is the ultimate free loading benefit.

In essence these paper pushers for the state are making at the minimum $80 an hr spread out over a pension check and benefits.

Many of these jobs are welfare recipients dream.

Then look into private industry such as Unitil. These CEOs are pulling in four million a year. Talk about free loading. Four yrs of part time college for mountains of cash and benefits.
Fitchburg

Fitchburg, MA

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#36
Aug 16, 2013
 

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Droopyballs wrote:
<quoted text>
Even if they tested positive that means they will request therapy and rehab and the taxpayers will have to pay for that.
I agree with drug testing and if they are caught selling or buying drugs then they should lose all their benefits but they also know how to use the system and get around that.
Transition people off benefits. They can go from receiving $10,000 annually in welfare benefits and into a $25,000 annual salary.

The majority of recipients receive an average of $12,000 annually that includes a $700 a month check,$200 a month food allowance and $100 medical cost a month.

We all need to be honest. Some work is harder than other work but the average work week is equivalent to sitting at a desk and making copies.

Anyone earning $75,000 and up should NEVER complain about what others are doing.

What is worse than welfare recipients $12,000 annual stipend is listening to people earning money for absolutely nothing or very little labor complaining about others.
Wondering

Tyngsboro, MA

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#37
Aug 16, 2013
 

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Fitchburg wrote:
<quoted text>
30 years of salary and then 30 years of pension. If welfare recipients did the math they would apply for a city or state job as that is the ultimate free loading benefit.
In essence these paper pushers for the state are making at the minimum $80 an hr spread out over a pension check and benefits.
Many of these jobs are welfare recipients dream.
Then look into private industry such as Unitil. These CEOs are pulling in four million a year. Talk about free loading. Four yrs of part time college for mountains of cash and benefits.
The CEO of Unitil made $1.09 million last year, not $4 million.
He earned a BA from La Salle University, an MA from the University of Delaware and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School. Some part time college.
Droopyballs

Gardner, MA

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#38
Aug 16, 2013
 

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Mr Clark Straight made 4.1 million on his pension all with a stupid looking hat on.
Debbie

Concord, MA

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#39
Oct 11, 2013
 
Debbie wrote:
And in my case alcohol testing
same goes with Pauline and Cathy,and Donna and. Jill and Jen and Jane hahahahahahaha
Lynch

Fitchburg, MA

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#40
Oct 11, 2013
 

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The USA is in turmoil with itself. NASA, Police, Fire, Postal workers, commuter rail, city, state and many many other public funded jobs. Against private industry??

Everyone is pointing the finger at everyone else. Why don't we all just look out for one an other?

America always supported itself with its service industry.

We have Mitt Romney who hired illegal landscapers and painters who hosted a $60,000 a plate dinner where all the partiers sat around snubbing their nose talking about how to take food stamps away from the poor!

I say, let it all go. Stop food stamps, stop social security, stop disability, stop welfare, stop section eight and let it all lay where it may!

What do you think will happen? Cut all pensions off and all city and state workers. That is it, let the strongest survive!

Americans have become so spoiled!!!!!

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