Texas County Speeds Up Plan to Pay Down Pension Debt

Welcome to Texas

Officials in Dawson County, Texas have revised a plan to pay down pension debt this week.

Originally, officials planned to fully pay down the county’s pension debt over a period of 15 years. Now, the county plans to pay down its debt completely by 2018.

From the Seminole Sentinel:

The Commissioners’ Court approved a decision to pay in full a deficit in the retirement plan for county employees during the next four years instead of during a longer period of time. By paying sooner than later, the county will save $ 861,000 in the long run, said County Auditor Rick Dollahan. The new payment plan is a decrease from original 15-year plan.

“I think it’s a good return on our investment, said Court member Blair Tharp.

Employees receive benefits through the Texas County and District Retirement System, in which a percentage of their paychecks, chosen by employers, are deposited into their TCDRS accounts. The savings grow at an annual, compounded rate, and upon retirement, employees receive a benefit payment for life based on the final account balance and employer matching. Employers pay 100 percent of their required contribution rate each year. The current deficit does not negatively affect employees’ retirement plan investments.

“I don’t want our retirees to get scared or worried. We’re in great shape,” Dollahan said.

Currently, the plan is funded at about 80 percent; the county plans to pay the deficit by 2018.

The Texas County & District Retirement System manages $23 billion in assets and works with 655 counties in Texas.

Major Pensions Commit To Asia Private Equity Fund


A handful of pension funds have recently committed over $200 million collectively to the Baring Asia Private Equity Fund VI.

Pension systems making investments in the fund include the Texas County & District Retirement System, the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System, the Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System and the San Francisco City & County Employees’ Retirement System.

From the Asian Venture Capital Journal:

Texas County & District Retirement System (TCDRS) has committed $50 million to Baring Private Equity Asia’s sixth pan-regional fund, which recently reached a first close of $3.2 billion.

The pension system, which had $24.5 billion under management as of June 2014, invested $40 million in Baring Asia’s previous fund. Earlier this year, it also allocated $40 million to the private equity firm’s first dedicated regional real estate vehicle, which is looking to raise $500 million.

Baring Asia Private Equity Fund VI has already exceeded its initial target of $3.2 billion. AVCJ was previously told that the vehicle has a hard cap of $3.85 billion, not including the GP contribution. Fund V closed at $2.46 billion in January 2011, beating its original target of $1.75 billion after just six months in the market.

Other disclosed investors in Fund VI include Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System (PSERS) – also an LP in Baring’s previous three funds – which has committed $100 million, and San Francisco City & County Employees’ Retirement System, which is putting in up to $50 million. The Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System is investing $20 million.

TCDRS has planned to increase its private equity holdings. Its current allocation is 8 percent, but its target is 12 percent.

In fiscal year 2013-14, TCDRS’ private equity portfolio returned 22 percent.