Oregon's Legislature passed a bill that would increase the contributions of some employees to the $75 billion Oregon Public Employees Fund and extend the time the pension plan's liability will be fully funded by two years — to 2022, information on the state Legislature's website shows.
Gov. Kate Brown, who pushed for the bill, is expected to sign it.
"Today, the PERS system is underfunded: the funded status is 80%. But what may surprise you is a majority of states are worse off. So regardless of what you may have heard, we are not smack in the middle of an immediate crisis like other states," Ms. Brown said in April before a Oregon Senate subcommittee. "However, make no mistake, our crisis is just over the horizon. We can see it coming, and we must do something about it this session."
Employees whose monthly salary exceeds $2,500 will pay 2.5% of their salaries to a pension stability account that would be used to pay down the pension plan's unfunded liability instead of going into a defined contribution-type plan. Employees earning less than $2,500 a month will not have a portion of their salaries redirected to the pension stability account.