06 December 2009

Will we ever get to retire?

This is a little behind the curve, but of interest to most, if not all UC faculty. According to Randy Scott, who is Executive Director of Human Resources and Benefits for the UC system, UCRP will be funded at about 61% by 2013, down from 95% this past July (and down from 149% in 2001), even taking into account the April 15 restart of contributions to the plan (up to a total 17% of contributions from employees and employer combined), as well a projected 7.5% rate of return on UCRP investments.

This is, obviously very bad news. For one thing, it's not clear where the employer contributions will come from, given that the state has so far refused to own up to its share of contributions and has no intention to do so in the future. Moreover, it's not clear that the projected 7.5% rate of return is realistic: what kind of RoR can one expect if one had some $60B to play with? (How would I know?)

UCOP rules out any changes to the plan for retirees and current employees, but it's likely that new hires will see reduced benefits, including perhaps a switch from a defined benefit  to a defined contribution model.

For those who want to temper any budding holiday cheer with the gruesome details of the sorry state of UCRP, Randy Scott's powerpoint presentation can be found here.

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