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Pension & Debt

Grassroot Testimony: SB 2840 (Reporting Deaths to State Agencies)

To: House Committee on Labor & Public Employment Rep. Mark Nakashima, Chair Rep. Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D. RE: SB 2840 — RELATING TO REPORTING DEATHS TO STATE AGENCIES Comments Only Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii would

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HNN Covers Grassroot Report on Zombie Pension Payments

Yesterday, Grassroot released its finding that more than a half a million dollars had been paid out of the public pension fund to deceased beneficiaries. Reporter Rick Daysog of Hawaii News Now picked up the story and covered it in the evening news. You can see more below or go

Read More →

Post-Employment Benefits Are King

We’ve earlier written about State pensions and other post-employment benefits. We’ve mentioned that the liabilities are potentially huge, but we haven’t yet spoken much about constitutional protection. The Hawaii Constitution says, “Membership in any employees’ retirement system of the State or any political subdivision thereof shall be a contractual relationship,

Read More →

Unfunded Liabilities – Smoke and Mirrors?

Recently, I was on a television program with two very prominent local politicians, and the subject of unfunded liabilities came up. We know that actuaries have looked at the Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund, or EUTF, and have found that the plan is “unfunded” by a staggering amount, as in

Read More →

Hawaii’s Pension Woes Mark Its Sinkhole Status

In the past, Grassroot has reported on how the state’s unfunded liabilities have affected our economic outlook–and created a burden that every state taxpayer will eventually have to bear. A recent article from Danny Mahoney of Truth in Accounting, lays out exactly why Hawaii makes it into the top 5

Read More →

Grassroot Testimony on Closed Meetings for the ERS Board

April 7, 2015   To: House Committee on Finance Rep. Sylvia Luke, Chair Rep. Scott Nishimoto, Vice Chair   From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.   RE: SB 1208 — RELATING TO THE EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT SYSTEM   Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Read More →

Grassroot Testimony on Proposed Changes To Overtime Rules

February 10, 2015   To: House Committee on Labor & Public Employment Rep. Mark Nakashima, Chair Rep. Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair   From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.   RE: HB 558 — RELATING TO OVERTIME   Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Read More →

Hawaii is Addressing Liabilities, but There’s a Long Way to Go

Regardless of party, most Hawaii policymakers will acknowledge that the state’s unfunded liabilities must be addressed. And there have been some efforts to do so. The state has been increasing its contributions, attempting to reach the point where the pension fund is considered healthy (at least 80% funded). Unfortunately, it’s a

Read More →

Grassroot Testimony: SB 2840 (Reporting Deaths to State Agencies)

To: House Committee on Labor & Public Employment Rep. Mark Nakashima, Chair Rep. Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D. RE: SB 2840 — RELATING TO REPORTING DEATHS TO STATE AGENCIES Comments Only Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii would

Read More →

HNN Covers Grassroot Report on Zombie Pension Payments

Yesterday, Grassroot released its finding that more than a half a million dollars had been paid out of the public pension fund to deceased beneficiaries. Reporter Rick Daysog of Hawaii News Now picked up the story and covered it in the evening news. You can see more below or go

Read More →

Post-Employment Benefits Are King

We’ve earlier written about State pensions and other post-employment benefits. We’ve mentioned that the liabilities are potentially huge, but we haven’t yet spoken much about constitutional protection. The Hawaii Constitution says, “Membership in any employees’ retirement system of the State or any political subdivision thereof shall be a contractual relationship,

Read More →

Unfunded Liabilities – Smoke and Mirrors?

Recently, I was on a television program with two very prominent local politicians, and the subject of unfunded liabilities came up. We know that actuaries have looked at the Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund, or EUTF, and have found that the plan is “unfunded” by a staggering amount, as in

Read More →

Hawaii’s Pension Woes Mark Its Sinkhole Status

In the past, Grassroot has reported on how the state’s unfunded liabilities have affected our economic outlook–and created a burden that every state taxpayer will eventually have to bear. A recent article from Danny Mahoney of Truth in Accounting, lays out exactly why Hawaii makes it into the top 5

Read More →

Grassroot Testimony on Closed Meetings for the ERS Board

April 7, 2015   To: House Committee on Finance Rep. Sylvia Luke, Chair Rep. Scott Nishimoto, Vice Chair   From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.   RE: SB 1208 — RELATING TO THE EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT SYSTEM   Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Read More →

Grassroot Testimony on Proposed Changes To Overtime Rules

February 10, 2015   To: House Committee on Labor & Public Employment Rep. Mark Nakashima, Chair Rep. Jarrett Keohokalole, Vice Chair   From: Grassroot Institute of Hawaii President Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.   RE: HB 558 — RELATING TO OVERTIME   Dear Chair and Committee Members: The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Read More →

Hawaii is Addressing Liabilities, but There’s a Long Way to Go

Regardless of party, most Hawaii policymakers will acknowledge that the state’s unfunded liabilities must be addressed. And there have been some efforts to do so. The state has been increasing its contributions, attempting to reach the point where the pension fund is considered healthy (at least 80% funded). Unfortunately, it’s a

Read More →