I concur with your April 7 editorial on Assembly Bill 415 (“Proposal could create PERS death spiral”). Delaying Nevada PERS contribution increases (or decreases) from every two years to every six years is not in the best interest of the taxpayers, local governments or their employees.
Despite PERS’ stellar investment performance that significantly exceeded the target investment returns for three decades, contribution rates have consistently increased. The increases were due partly to differences between actual vs. assumed actuarial data, but some of the most significant impacts to unfunded liabilities occurred because of legislative enhancements to benefits without funding their impacts.
Consequently, PERS regular rates have increased on the current biennial cycle seven times since fiscal year 1999 and decreased just once. Police/fire rates have increased six times without ever decreasing.
Delaying the recognition of rate increases does nothing to reduce the unfunded liability but likely aggravates its long-term funding issues. I doubt local governments and their employees would delay rate increases if they believed their eventual impact would be exponentially larger precisely because of the delay.