The City of Austin Employees’ Retirement System is facing a significant funding crisis, putting both taxpayers and retirees at risk. In order to ensure the solvency and longevity of the fund, decisive action is needed.
- The City of Austin Employees’ Retirement System (COAERS) is facing a multi-billion dollar crisis.
- At the end of fiscal year 2016, the retirement system reported almost $1.3 billion more in promised pensions than it had in assets available to pay them. Using more conservative accounting methods, the total shortfall could be as much as $2.4 billion.
- The decline of COAERS’s solvency has been a long time in the making.
- Resolution of this issue will require pain in the short term and political courage to make the decisions that will hurt today, but preserve retiree benefits and Austin’s budget in the long run.