Detroit’s Pension Problems: Not as Bad as They’re Portrayed

Source: Monique Morrissey, Economic Policy Institute, Working Economics blog, August 1, 2013

Detroit’s emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, claims Detroit owes $3.5 billion to its public pension funds. This is more than five times the $640 million the funds’ actuaries estimated in 2011, vaulting pensioners into the ranks of the city’s major creditors, which isn’t a good place to be. It also contributes to Orr’s claim that Detroit owes a total of $18 billion—half to retirees and workers—and that bankruptcy is the city’s only recourse….
Related:
Inflating Detroit’s Pension Liabilities, Part 2
Source: Monique Morrissey, Economic Policy Institute, Working Economics blog, August 5, 2013

Detroit: Pensions, Racism and Bankruptcy
Source: Ross Eisenbrey, Economic Policy Institute, Working Economics blog, August 5, 2013

Detroit’s current citizens and the public employees who serve them are not the cause of Detroit’s fiscal problems. They are the victims of forces beyond their control, including globalization, capital flight and racism. No one can, with any seriousness, blame Detroit’s librarians, social workers, garbage collection workers or street cleaners for the city’s catastrophic loss of population and tax base, the long decline and near-collapse of the Big 3 auto companies, or the 1967 riots, which launched a frantic exodus of businesses, white residents, and money from the City of Detroit to the suburbs….