Commercial Appeal city hall reporter digs into municipal pensions

Digital desk discussion with Sam Hardiman
Published: Jan. 10, 2022 at 12:32 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Commercial Appeal City Hall Reporter Sam Hardiman joined Action News 5′s Andrew Douglas at the Digital Desk Monday.

They talked about Hardiman’s recent story digs into municipal pensions and what Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland’s administration would like to spend money on.

“Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland would love or is at least hinting that he would like to give police officers and firefighters a raise,” Hardiman said. “They’ve had a long pandemic, they’ve been used a lot, and the mayor is always trying to recruit more police officers. Higher wages, presumably, more police officers come. What could complicate that is what we’re paying yesterday’s police officers and firefighters largely, and public works workers, is the pension plan. And so, the state of Tennessee has dropped the assumed rate of return for pensions…The point being is Mayor Strickland is warning that this drop  in discount rate could impact how much money the city has to give a raise to police officers and firefighters. It could cost, the city might have to contribute $8-million dollars more than expected to the city pension. Whether or not that happens is still up in the air”

Watch their interview here or on our streaming apps -- Amazon Fire, AppleTV and Roku.

Read Sam’s stories here.

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