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Supreme Court: Omaha Pension Can Hire Actuary on City Dime, But Not Attorney

Omaha

In 2011 and 2012, the board of Omaha’s Police and Fire pension fund considered hiring an outside attorney, as well as a consultant.

But the City told them it wouldn’t pay for those hires.

Now, the Nebraska Supreme Court has weighed in, and ruled that the pension board can indeed hire an actuary on the city’s dime – but not a lawyer.

From the World-Herald:

Friday, the Supreme Court [ruled that] the board can hire an actuary but doesn’t have the authority to hire an attorney whenever it deems necessary.

The court ruled that the hiring of an actuary to study disability payments from the pension funds was allowable and could be charged to the city’s general funds.

The actuarial study was projected to cost about $10,000.

Outside legal firms represented both the pension board and the city in the lawsuit. Now comes the part of paying those firms.

The city’s legal bill for the case will come to about $95,000.

Since the Supreme Court said the pension board doesn’t have authority to hire its own attorney, the question is not how much the board will pay, but rather if it will be able to pay.

A District court previously ruled that the pension board could hire both lawyers and consultants on the city dime. But Omaha appealed that decision up to the Supreme Court.

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