Back to pensions today. The so-called Taxpayers Alliance has yet again rehashed their dodgy dossier to claim that that local government pensions face a black hole.
I presume the business funders of this organisation have worked out that this is good value for money. They cut their own workers pensions, whack up their own personal pension pots and then set up a lobby organisation to persuade everyone that it is all the fault of the quality pension schemes.
Today’s allegations are particularly stupid. Their claims are based on the nonsensical supposition that everyone is going to retire at once, tomorrow. Neither do these pensions cost £1 of every £5 of council tax, because council tax makes up only a small percentage of funding.
In fact the local government pension scheme is affordable and sustainable and its income exceeded expenditure by almost £6 billion in the last year. In Scotland we have a fully funded new scheme that includes increased staff contributions. The scheme provides very modest pensions to low paid staff who otherwise would rely on state benefits. What we need is some perspective here and a move away from a race to the bottom on pensions.