NPRI: Release of limited PERS information affirms need for reform, transparency

LAS VEGAS — In response to Nevada PERS’ release of limited information on the benefits paid out to retired public workers, and the disturbing, yet expected, confirmation that some many retired government employees are receiving massive payouts in their retirement, Nevada Policy Research Institute’s Executive Vice President Victor Joecks issued the following response:

The release of limited payout information from NVPERS shows exactly why pension reform is so desperately needed.

As the public has long suspected, hundreds of retired government employees are now receiving over $100,000 a year — in retirement payouts. And while those in the private sector typically retire in their mid-60s, many government employees retire in their 50s or even 40s.

For instance, former North Las Vegas firefighter and Assembly Speaker John Oceguera retired in 2011 at the ripe old age of 43. His pension payout for January alone was over $10,000. To get a $120,000 a year guaranteed payout for life at his age would cost a private citizen over $2.5 million.

Pensions like this are exactly why Nevada’s unfunded PERS liability is around $41 billion and why NVPERS needs to comply with the Nevada Supreme Court and release all requested information on pension payouts, including full payouts records for 2012 and 2013, accrued service time, job titles and retirement dates. 

Joecks added that the limited data would be added to in the upcoming weeks.

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