Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Local Governance Director James Quintero issued the following statement on Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s tentative pension reform agreement with officials from the Houston Municipal Employees Pension System (HMEPS), the Houston Police Officers Pension System (HPOPS), and the Houston Firefighters’ Relief and Retirement Fund (HFRRF) announced today. According to the Houston Chronicle, the Mayor’s proposal would “eliminate Houston’s pension under-funding within 30 years, avoid more than $2.5 billion in future costs through benefit reductions and include the issuance of at least $1 billion in bonds.”

“Full details of the Mayor’s pension reform plans are yet to be revealed, but one thing is clear—Houstonians still wouldn’t have a voice in how their local retirement systems are run,” said James Quintero, director of the Center for Local Governance. “Houston’s three major pension plans, like many others around the state, locks into state law many of their existing plan provisions while locking-out those footing the bill.”

Quintero continued, “Houston’s pension plans are in dire need of reform, but the first and most important step in this process is to remove these plans, and all others like them, from state law and give taxpayers a seat back at the table.” 

For more information or to request an interview with Mr. Quintero, please contact Caroline Espinosa at cespinosa@texaspolicy.com or 512-472-2700.

James Quintero is Director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
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