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Old 02-02-2016, 11:49 AM
 
Location: Loudon, TN
5,768 posts, read 4,822,990 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matisse12 View Post
That is difficult to believe, ACWhite, when every public employee I've ever heard of has at least double that amount and often beyond double.

I think the figures must or might be skewed by figuring in those who worked a much less amount of time with those who worked many more years, or another type of skewing of the figures.
I don't know how many public employees you've "heard of", but as a lifelong public employee, married to a lifelong public employee who is the son of a public employee, and about 3/4 of our friends and family are public employees, or employees of utilities, or other pension providing employers, I'm here to tell you that the figure is absolutely correct. Of course my experience of 30 years and my personal acquaintance of hundreds of public employees probably doesn't compare to those people you've "heard of" .

The typical public employee makes about $36K per year, and after 30 years of employment is eligible to receive 60-70% of that as pension depending upon their age at retirement, actual years of service, and highest salary. About 90% of my friends and family fall into this category. In addition to their pensions, they have the value of their homes, some savings and investments and, in most of our cases, SS for their retirements. So we're doing fine, but we're certainly not receiving "beyond double" the average, or rolling in money.

Public employment is open to all, so it's not like we inherited the money, or are stealing it from taxpayers. You too can receive a pension if you dedicate yourself to public service, accept below market pay for your whole career, and have your pension contributions deducted from your salary for 30 years. This is, after all, money that is deducted from our salary every month and invested for us. You can think of it as a forced investment plan for retirement. If you had invested that % of your salary all these years, you could buy an annuity and do the same thing.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:14 PM
 
5,423 posts, read 3,440,673 times
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Linda_d at #192,

He does, indeed, get $1000 for having worked 10 years as a public school teacher.

And as I mentioned, compare that with the $1278 per month I get for working 38 years. (non-public employee)

Situations for public employees have different variables and parameters of all the different states of the nation.

The people chiming in with low level jobs making $36,000 per year salary as a public employee do not change the situation.

I'm not here to argue against public employees at all.....I just merely present the comparison.

Last edited by matisse12; 02-02-2016 at 12:38 PM..
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:19 PM
 
5,423 posts, read 3,440,673 times
Reputation: 13661
Clemencia at #194, I would say that $2500 per month in retirement is a large sum.

Not to put Escort Rider on the spot, but he has freely stated that he gets around $56,000 per year pension in retirement after working as a public school teacher for his career.....which in comparison to many others is a very large sum.

The average Social Security payment is $1200 per month.

Not begrudging public employees at all, although some at the higher levels receive a very large pension comparatively. Ideally, everyone would have a livable wage in their working years, and a livable income in their retirement.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:21 PM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 7,323,056 times
Reputation: 13779
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheShadow View Post
I don't know how many public employees you've "heard of", but as a lifelong public employee, married to a lifelong public employee who is the son of a public employee, and about 3/4 of our friends and family are public employees, or employees of utilities, or other pension providing employers, I'm here to tell you that the figure is absolutely correct. Of course my experience of 30 years and my personal acquaintance of hundreds of public employees probably doesn't compare to those people you've "heard of" .

The typical public employee makes about $36K per year, and after 30 years of employment is eligible to receive 60-70% of that as pension depending upon their age at retirement, actual years of service, and highest salary. About 90% of my friends and family fall into this category. In addition to their pensions, they have the value of their homes, some savings and investments and, in most of our cases, SS for their retirements. So we're doing fine, but we're certainly not receiving "beyond double" the average, or rolling in money.

Public employment is open to all, so it's not like we inherited the money, or are stealing it from taxpayers. You too can receive a pension if you dedicate yourself to public service, accept below market pay for your whole career, and have your pension contributions deducted from your salary for 30 years. This is, after all, money that is deducted from our salary every month and invested for us. You can think of it as a forced investment plan for retirement. If you had invested that % of your salary all these years, you could buy an annuity and do the same thing.
Well said!
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:30 PM
 
5,423 posts, read 3,440,673 times
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I think "dedicating oneself to public service" is vastly overstating the case and also trumping up.

Public employees include people who operate snow plows, paint lines on the streets, collect fines, file clerks, etc.....there is no 'great dedication' to a great cause involved for the vast majority of public employees....The Shadow at #201.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:32 PM
 
6,303 posts, read 5,042,575 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matisse12 View Post
Clemencia at #194, I would say that $2500 per month in retirement is a large sum.

Not to put Escort Rider on the spot, but he has freely stated that he gets around $56,000 per year pension in retirement after working as a public school teacher for his career.....which in comparison to many others is a very large sum.

The average Social Security payment is $1200 per month.

Not begrudging public employees at all, although some at the higher levels receive a very large pension comparatively. Ideally, everyone would have a livable wage in their working years, and a livable income in their retirement.
So, all you have is your SS? My other half can also get SS if he applies. He is up in the air about it for some reason. Hasn't even put in for Medicare. Relies on his federal insurance plan FEPBlue. But boy was he in shock when he was told he had a co-pay for his prostate cancer surgery.

He worked many other side jobs over the years to complete all his SS quarters. His government job didn't pay into SS.

I should also be able to collect SS. Military personnel do pay into that.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,655 posts, read 1,521,066 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matisse12 View Post
Linda_d at #192,

He does, indeed, get $1000 for having worked 10 years as a public school teacher.

And as I mentioned, compare that with the $1278 I get for working 38 years. (non-public employee)

Situations for public employees have different variables and parameters of all the different states of the nation.

The people chiming in with low level jobs making $36,000 per year salary as a public employee do not change the situation.

I'm not here to argue against public employees at all.....I just merely present the comparison.
I would not consider your friend's pension to be that unusual. Most states have multipliers of 2% or even 2.5% of high salary for each year worked (at least they used to). In the Washington DC area, I would expect that school teachers might make $60K. For 10 years of service at 2% a year, that would be 20% of $60K or $12K a year. Of course many states will not allow you to get a pension with only 10 years or service unless you are retiring at 60+. And they probably paid 5-10% of their salary to obtain that state pension. You can't compare social security to a workplace pension - these are apples and oranges. The pension should pay more than social security.

And pensions might be cut 25% or so if you choose to have survivor benefits. Clemencia's example of a federal employee working 35 years with a monthly pension of $2500 after health insurance and survivor benefits (and perhaps taxes?) makes sense.

Oregon had a generous state pension. A friend retired with 20 years and half of her salary. Of course her salary was not that high. State salaries can be low in many states. My niece is a school teacher in Texas and makes about $45K with almost 10 years of service. And the school system has chosen not to pay into social security. My niece is happy with this arrangement because she does not want to pay the social security tax out of her small salary and does not think the program will be in place when she retires. But I think her employer is doing her a dis-service considering the low salaries.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:43 PM
 
6,303 posts, read 5,042,575 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQ2015 View Post
I would not consider your friend's pension to be that unusual. Most states have multipliers of 2% or even 2.5% of high salary for each year worked (at least they used to). In the Washington DC area, I would expect that school teachers might make $60K. For 10 years of service at 2% a year, that would be 20% of $60K or $12K a year. Of course many states will not allow you to get a pension with only 10 years or service unless you are retiring at 60+. And they probably paid 5-10% of their salary to obtain that state pension. You can't compare social security to a workplace pension - these are apples and oranges. The pension should pay more than social security.

And pensions might be cut 25% or so if you choose to have survivor benefits. Clemencia's example of a federal employee working 35 years with a monthly pension of $2500 after health insurance and survivor benefits (and perhaps taxes?) makes sense.

Oregon had a generous state pension. A friend retired with 20 years and half of her salary. Of course her salary was not that high. State salaries can be low in many states. My niece is a school teacher in Texas and makes about $45K with almost 10 years of service. And the school system has chosen not to pay into social security. My niece is happy with this arrangement because she does not want to pay the social security tax out of her small salary and does not think the program will be in place when she retires. But I think her employer is doing her a dis-service considering the low salaries.
Yep, he still pays taxes on that pension. I pay taxes on my military retirement - FICA and SS, plus insurance.

I have several relatives that worked for the local school system. A few years back there was some loophole that allowed them to attend some workshop or something - not sure - and they would be able to collect SS. I'll have to ask my sister about it.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 7,323,056 times
Reputation: 13779
Quote:
Originally Posted by matisse12 View Post
Clemencia at #194, I would say that $2500 per month in retirement is a large sum.

Not to put Escort Rider on the spot, but he has freely stated that he gets around $56,000 per year pension in retirement after working as a public school teacher for his career.....which in comparison to many others is a very large sum.

The average Social Security payment is $1200 per month.

Not begrudging public employees at all, although some at the higher levels receive a very large pension comparatively. Ideally, everyone would have a livable wage in their working years, and a livable income in their retirement.
And Escort Rider has at least a bachelor's degree and likely a graduate degree since he worked in California. He also worked a lot of years for the same employer. Compared to the compensation that other people with his same level of education got, he was undoubtedly underpaid. That's a trade-off he made: current bucks for future security, and it's one that most professionals in public employment have to decide for themselves. You only hear about the ones who stay for 25-30 years, not the ones who stay for 3 years and then decide to parlay their experience into 50% bigger salaries in the private sector.

Public pensions and SS are proverbial apples to oranges. The average Social Security payment includes the payments to people with all levels of education, including people who never graduated from high school, all levels of pay grades, and to people who never worked outside their homes, as it includes survivor benefits to widows and under-age children. Moreover, SS is calculated so that not only do people who earned the least get a higher percentage of benefits than those who had higher incomes, but it also limits the ability of people to significantly improve their SS benefit later in their careers as it counts 35 years of employment history.
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Old 02-02-2016, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 7,323,056 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clemencia53 View Post
Yep, he still pays taxes on that pension. I pay taxes on my military retirement - FICA and SS, plus insurance.

I have several relatives that worked for the local school system. A few years back there was some loophole that allowed them to attend some workshop or something - not sure - and they would be able to collect SS. I'll have to ask my sister about it.
States decide whether public employees, including school teachers, pay into SS and are therefore eligible for SS retirement benefits. In NY and FL, public employees pay into SS and get SS for their years worked. In MA, they don't. Consequently, my cousin and his wife moved from MA to Florida after she got her teaching certification and she found out that teaching in MA would cost her SS.
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