Monday, January 23, 2012

Pension plans to cost Knox more this year

Knox County will probably have to contribute between $5 million and $5.3 million to the Uniformed Officers Pension Plan, or UOPP, this upcoming fiscal year in order to keep it healthy, according to projections released this morning to the pension board.

That’s as much as $1.3 million more than the $4.1 million the county put in last summer. And that doesn’t include the $4.1 million in bond coin the county will also have to pay.

The Sheriff’s Office pension plan, however, isn’t the county’s only problem. Two closed plans – one for county officials and the old teacher’s plan – also need a cash injection. The county plan is expected to cost taxpayers another $600,000 to $800,000 and the Board of Education plan will cost an extra $150,000 to $250,000.

Last year the county plan cost about $1.5 million and the school plan cost $1.046 million.

The pension board plans to meet later in February to discuss the UOPP. At that time, members will talk about the plan’s liabilities, assumed rate of returns on investments and possible changes.

“We want to focus on the magnitude of the problem and what can get changed and what can’t,” said county Commissioner Richard Briggs, who also serves on the pension board.

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