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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: Treatment of Teacher Contributions Also Increase District Unfunded Liabilities


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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: CalSTRS Funding Plan Relies on Abstract Calculation

February 2, 2016 - This post is the second of a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we critique the complex calculation central to the funding plan.

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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: Theoretical Investment Gains Have Shifted Unfunded Liabilities to Districts

February 2, 2016 - This post is the third in a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we describe how the abstract calculation upon which the funding plan is based has increased the district share of CalSTRS’ unfunded liabilities while decreasing the state share.

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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: Conclusion

February 2, 2016 - This post is the eighth in a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we offer some concluding thoughts.

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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: Funding Plan May Not Meet Principle of “Shared Responsibility”

February 2, 2016 - This post is the sixth in a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we describe how the plan might fall short of meeting the principle of “shared responsibility,” a key goal of the Legislature in passing the plan. Specifically, we explain how the state may not incur higher costs under the funding plan.

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CalSTRS Funding: An Update

May 5, 2017 - The CalSTRS board recently acted to change assumptions used to estimate its unfunded liabilities, including the key assumption about future investment returns--sometimes referred to as the "discount rate." These and other recent developments have eroded CalSTRS' funding situation. This brief details these changes and describes how they will affect the state, school and community college districts, and teachers

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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: State’s Future Responsibility for CalSTRS Uncertain

February 2, 2016 - This post is the fifth in a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we describe how the state’s share of CalSTRS’ unfunded liabilities will be more sensitive to investment gains and losses than the district share.

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CalSTRS Funding Update

July 19, 2018 - In May 2018, the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) released an update on the financial position of the pension system, which was largely in line with expectations. This post summarizes the update, which contains the latest estimates of the unfunded liability and contribution rates required for districts, employees, and the state.

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[PDF] Addressing CalSTRS' Long-Term Funding Needs

March 20, 2013 - Last year, the Legislature asked CalSTRS to submit a report detailing at least three options for addressing the unfunded liabilities of the pension system's Defined Benefit (DB) Program, which are now estimated by system actuaries to total about $70 billion. This handout for the Legislature's Public Employment and Retirement Committees (1) describes the risks of waiting to address CalSTRS' unfunded liabilities, (2) compares CalSTRS' unfunded liabilities to California's other long-term liabilities, (3) and examines possible sources for additional funding. We recommend that the Legislature adopt a plan that aims to fully fund CalSTRS' unfunded liabilities in about 30 years. A companion video further explains our findings and recommendations.

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[PDF] CalSTRS Pension Proposals

March 28, 2019 - Senate Budget Subcommittee No. 1 on Education

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[PDF] The 2020-21 Budget: Proposition 2 Debt Payment Proposals

March 10, 2020 - Over the next decade, the state will be required to allocate an additional $12 billion to $21 billion to accelerate the pay down of state retirement liabilities under the provisions of Proposition 2 (2014). This represents a key and unique opportunity for the state. The Governor offers one strategy to prioritize these funds over the next few years. Notably, the Governor focuses on the state’s share of the unfunded liability for teachers’ pensions. While we agree this focus makes sense, the amounts the Governor proposes dedicating to this purpose are not connected to the specific actuarial needs of the teachers’ pension system. In this report, we present a method the Legislature could use to tie these payments to the system’s actual needs, which would better target the funding.

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A Review of the CalSTRS Funding Plan: Background

February 2, 2016 - This post is the first of a series looking at the implementation of the CalSTRS funding plan. In this post, we provide key background information on pensions and CalSTRS.

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[PDF] CalSTRS Pension Proposals

March 12, 2019 - Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance