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Thread: City workers pension plans - Cradle to grave monthly checks, paid by tax payers.

  1. #1

    City workers pension plans - Cradle to grave monthly checks, paid by tax payers.

    Should city workers be paid a pension for the rest of their life for 30 years of five man crews for fill in potholes?

  2. #2
    It is not at all clear that the workers are to blame.

    Without exaggeration, our roads would embarrass a third world country, but is it their fault or that of their managers (poor allocation of manpower and supervision, substandard specs - e.g. thinner asphalt than in Ontario) or due to corruption? I was told by a city worker that he was forced to work painfully slowly and punished when he failed to comply.

    At one point, their pension fund had a surplus, but the city grabbed it and didn't pay their share into the fund for years.

  3. #3
    A pension is deferred wages; it is not a freebee or a gift, as some people (who haven't had the foresight to work for one) imagine. In normal cirmumstances, the union agrees with the employer that part of the money paid to the worker is transfered to a pension fund, and the employer usually matches that amount. It is a deal negociated in collective agreements, or labour contracts. A pension fund is never the property of the employer since the empolyee contributes to it directly, and is subject to government regulation.

    In the case of government pensions though, at one point the government (the employer), grabs the cash and promises to guarantee pension payouts regardless in the future.

    So you can't blame the worker for wanting to maintain deals between labour and employer, that were made in the past.

    Just complaining that retirees don't deserve their pensions, that the government "can't" afford generous pensions (especially coming from the people who don't have one and are jealous) and they sould be cut and even eliminated, is a bad precedent since it supports the notion that governments can't honour deals they made in the past. It means that any contract you sign with the government is not worth the paper it's printed on should the government change its mind due to popular pressure.

    A deal is a deal, collective agreements included, and these contracts should be respected.

  4. #4
    The bottom line is that society can no longer afford to fund these pension plans and the public has little sympathy for these hot dog eaters. The Quebec government has to show that they are tough and have said several times that they will not back down on this. There may be a compromise in the end, but the bottom line is that the pensioners will get less and have to pay more.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Pistone View Post
    The bottom line is that society can no longer afford to fund these pension plans and the public has little sympathy for these hot dog eaters. The Quebec government has to show that they are tough and have said several times that they will not back down on this. There may be a compromise in the end, but the bottom line is that the pensioners will get less and have to pay more.
    I totally agree enought is enought

  6. #6
    sure they should get pensions, and it could be easily afforded if governments stopped giving checks to people that NEVER worked!!!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by anon_vlad View Post
    It is not at all clear that the workers are to blame.

    Without exaggeration, our roads would embarrass a third world country, but is it their fault or that of their managers (poor allocation of manpower and supervision, substandard specs - e.g. thinner asphalt than in Ontario) or due to corruption? I was told by a city worker that he was forced to work painfully slowly and punished when he failed to comply.

    At one point, their pension fund had a surplus, but the city grabbed it and didn't pay their share into the fund for years.
    The reason third world countries have better roads is that their workers will work for a $1-2 hour and are happy to to it in oppressive heat. Here in Quebec ( Montreal ) they need a minimum of 5 people to fill a pothole. One person to drive the truck, one person to fill it with asphalt, one person to tamp it down, and one person to sweep up the excess and another person to supervise. That one pothole filled is costing the city $100 - $150 with vehicle, gas, material and manpower. I have seen a city crew drive away from filling a pothole and it was like they just dumped in the loose asphalt without tamping it. The do a shit job for job security and to make future work for themselves.

    Quote Originally Posted by wilbur View Post
    A pension is deferred wages; it is not a freebee or a gift, as some people (who haven't had the foresight to work for one) imagine. In normal cirmumstances, the union agrees with the employer that part of the money paid to the worker is transfered to a pension fund, and the employer usually matches that amount. It is a deal negociated in collective agreements, or labour contracts. A pension fund is never the property of the employer since the empolyee contributes to it directly, and is subject to government regulation.
    All these labor deals were negotiated with the city labor holding a knife to the balls of the government. The government gave in at the time because it was the easiest thing to do and they will send the bill to the tax payer. Now that we know that 25% of the money in the past was lost due to corruption and the other 25% was lost due to lazy city workers the public will not stand for it anymore. This is just the first shot fired by the government. Tax payers will not stand for it any longer. Just like the federal government is slimming Canada post and making the mail carriers pick up mail at mail boxes and making them deliver parcels. The city government is telling the city workers that the party is over. No more pretending to work, no more 30 years of loafing to get a free pension.

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