Letter: Don't panic over pensions

Published: Sunday, March 10 2013 12:00 a.m. MST

Ralph Olson appears to be upset ("State pension fund," March 6). He quoted, "Retirement benefits for Utah's public employees could be in jeopardy." Olson failed to interpret the term "Utah's public employees" properly. Therefore he went on to state that he was upset "to think my tax dollars go to pay for pension funds for state employees."

"Utah public employees" is an umbrella term, including many state, county and city employees working all over Utah. These people only come under this umbrella by working years for their employers, who are providing the services to their municipalities. When they have reached a designated age with the sufficient number of worked years, they can sign up and receive retirement benefits, which are handled by the Utah Public Employees Association (UPEA) by the state of Utah laws and Legislature.

The newspaper article Olson referred to was giving a heads up that there had been "an overly optimistic rate of return on investments" and therefore the situation needed to be reviewed, to see if something needed to be done. Not that it was going to move right ahead with taxpapers' monies. The UPEA covers the payments to the pensions by judiciously making investments from the pension fund for the retirees.

Jeri Jensen

Murray

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