The purpose of this column is to share with you why your school taxes keep going up.
The answer is: INCREASING PENSION COSTS.
The growing pension costs of the ten public school districts that are located within the 28th PA Senate District in York County are staggering.
On June 30th the PA House and Senate passed pension reform legislation and forwarded it to Governor Wolf – Governor Wolf vetoed the pension reform bill within days.
The elephant in the room continues to be the MASSIVE pension crisis facing Pennsylvania taxpayers.
I was recently forwarded the pension information contained in this email for the school districts in the 28th PA Senate District.
Listed below are charts showing the pension costs from the 2008-09 to 2019-20, a span of twelve years.
The first chart shows each school district’s actual pension costs for the 2008-09 year and the second chart shows the projected cost for the 2019-20 year of each school district.
The final chart shows the percentage increase from 2008-09 year to the 2019-20 year.
As you review the charts, please note that for the 2008-09 year the total pension costs for the ten schools districts WERE $12,535,778 , the projected costs for the 2019-20 year WILL INCREASE to $103,057,888 , an INCREASE over a twelve year period of $90,522,110 per year.
The information that I am sharing with you is for ten school districts in York, Pennsylvania – there are over 500 school districts in Pennsylvania.
Please review the charts – I am sure you will agree that the Pennsylvania pension system is a ticking time bomb.
Pennsylvania must join the rest of the real world and go to a 401K retirement system.
History is history – the past is the past – NOW is the time to correct this problem.
By the way, in this email I only talk about school district pensions – there are many other departments affected by this pension mess – State Police, Penn Dot, Judges, State Universities, and workers from all other state agencies.
Over the next 30 days I will be meeting with various people in the private sector – not Harrisburg insiders – to discuss new ideas and options for a plan to move forward to diffuse the ticking time bomb.
To review the year by year details for each school district please click here.
I also want to report that Senate and House leadership have been meeting with the Governor over the 2015 – 2016 budget.
As I have continued to report, the solution cannot be higher taxes and more spending.
In the event that a budget deal would be reached, the Senate is on a 6-hour call – we would promptly reconvene to vote on the budget.
Addendum: A reader who follows my emails closely sent the following response:
“Scott–You are close to making a key point that appears to be missing in the debate about Wolf’s budget proposal. He wants to increase the state’s contribution to education. It sounds nice, like he is trying to help kids. But the fact is all of that additional funding and more will be poured into the black hole of pension costs. If he really wanted more for education and to relieve property taxes, he would start by repealing prevailing wage and tackle pension reform. But his budget shows what he really cares about….not schools and students, but rather the unions and their constituents.”
Great points about where the money is really going.