AFP Outraged by AFL-CIO’s Refusal to Recognize Need for Reform in Florida’s Public Pension System

For Immediate Release
Monday, January 10, 2010                                                     

Contact: Apryl Marie Fogel,     (850) 630-2166  



AFP Outraged by AFL-CIO’s Refusal to Recognize Need for Reform in Florida’s Public Pension System


PALM BEACH GARDENS- Today, the AFL-CIO claimed that “nothing is wrong” with Florida’s public pension system.

In response, AFP-Florida State Director Apryl Marie Fogel released the following statement:

“The AFL-CIO has gone to great lengths countless times to protect a benefit package for its public sector members regardless of what is good for Florida and its taxpayers.  Despite overwhelming evidence that the state’s public pension system faces a risky financial future, the AFL-CIO would prefer to protect its windfall and stand in the way of real reform.

AFP-Florida supports a straightforward, commonsense reform to diffuse the pension ticking time bomb: Florida should require all new public sector employees to utilize the defined-contribution pension benefit plan already available to them.  The existing unsustainable and outmoded defined benefit pension plan should be allowed to expire as current employees retire.  This simple reform with save taxpayers billions of dollars, level the playing field between state and private sector employees and set the state’s pension system on a sustainable fiscal path.

The facts are clear: Florida’s existing public sector pension obligation is among the highest in the nation, will a total liability well over $120 billion dollars and covering 1 million current and future retirees.  This is a huge plan that leaves little margin for error in calculating shortfalls and future obligations.  Even the most optimistic projections still leave Florida’s state sector pension unfunded by several billion dollars year in and year out.

Those who insist that “nothing is wrong” are simply relying on accounting gimmicks, improbable projections and unrealistic expected returns to make their claim.  Of course, it’s easy for the AFL-CIO to be risky with the state pension system because it’s not their member’s money on the line:  Florida is the only state where employees don’t contribute to the state pension fund.”

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is a nationwide organization of citizen-leaders committed to advancing every individual’s right to economic freedom and opportunity. AFP believes reducing the size and intrusiveness of government is the best way to promote individual productivity and prosperity for all Americans. AFP educates and engages citizens to support restraining state and federal government growth and returning government to its constitutional limits. AFP is more than 1.6 million activists strong, with activists in all 50 states.  AFP has 31 state chapters and affiliates. More than 70,000 Americans in all 50 states have made a financial contribution to AFP or AFP Foundation. 

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