JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Mayor Alvin Brown spoke with employees Tuesday afternoon about his retirement reform plans at a collective bargaining session with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).
This is the first in a series of meetings and negotiations, following Brown's unveiling Monday of the plan to the public and the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5-30.
READ MORE: Jacksonville mayor's police pension reform plan could save $1.5 billion over 30 years
The mayor's plan for City of Jacksonville employees in the General Employees Retirement Plan (GERP) is projected to save $10 million in its first year and $1.05 billion over 30 years, according to a release from the city. The plan for police employees is projected to save an estimated $1.5 billion over the next 30 years.
MORE DETAILS: Police employees retirement reform fact sheet
The plan includes changing the pension fund's rate of return to a what the mayor's office calls a "realistic one," and only making the changes for new and current employees, not past employees.
The GERP rate of return on investments will be lowered from an 8.25 percent return rate to 7 percent (net 6.5 percent), according to the release.
These changes will not apply to employees who have already retired or those who are eligible for retirement at the time the plan is implemented. However "it will modify the future benefits they earn after the plan is implemented," the release said.
The GERP has "a significant level of unfunded liability," according to the release. By October 2011, the deficit of the GERP had grown to $635 million.
New labor contracts agreed upon by the mayor and the four unions -- the Jacksonville Supervisors Association, the Jacksonville Association of Firefighters, the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees and the Fraternal Order of Police -- are projected to save $33 million over the next three years, according to a Monday release.
In these labor agreements, retirement benefits were not addressed, but
required that meetings be held to address them. In addition to today's meeting, the mayor will again meet with the AFSCME and JSA on Thursday.
Retirement reform meetings are also scheduled for next month with the Communication Workers of America and the Laborers International Union of North America.
First Coast News