Dallas Pension Bill Clears House

Legislation was unanimously passed by the Texas House of Representatives on Thursday that would require significantly larger pension contributions from Dallas to its severely underfunded pension system.

Additionally, the bill would require higher contributions from workers while also slashing benefits.

The legislation is aimed at improving the funding of the Dallas Police and Fire pension fund, one of the most dangerously underfunded plans in the country.

But officials have disagreed on a solution, and this bill also has its detractors.

More from the Dallas Business Journal:

The city paid $118.5 million in contributions to the pension in the last fiscal year, and the bill would require $151 million from the city by 2018. Rawlings has asked for a floor to be extended for the city for seven years before having to pitch in 34.5 percent of employee pay each year. Rawlings has also asked for more city oversight of the pension’s decisions.

There is still the chance for possible tweaks as the proposal makes its way to the next chamber. Rawlings and other city council members have said that some services may have to be cut to make the higher payments, but he indicated he would stop short of going further.

The bill would also nearly double the contributions from current pension members by $1.2 billion over the next 30 years, while also cutting benefits by $1.4 billion, according to pension officials.

The bill heads to the state Senate.

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