Retiree medical and pension costs in the SGV cities

Here’s a spreadsheet I developed by requesting retiree medical costs, annual pension costs, unfunded pension liabilities and unfunded medical liabilities from 24 public agencies in the San Gabriel Valley and Whittier areas:  

Retiree costs city by city.sxc

Depending on space issues, we will print my story this weekend that details how much 24 area cities spent on retiree medical costs, and of those cities, how many have started planning for the future retiree medical costs — which will only increase due to rising health care premiums, increasing life expectancy rates and a growing retiree base.

Santa Fe Springs shows us a slide, Santa Fe Springs.ppt,
 of what will happen if it starts paying for these long term costs, estimated at nearly $55 million, today versus what will happen if it continues on a pay-as-you go approach. That is, pay for the expenses as they come year-by-year. Problem with the pay as you go approach is that eventually these costs could overwhelm some city budgets.

These costs will vary from city to city for several reasons: number of retirees, number of employees, services offered by the city, such as having its own police or fire departments, and types of benefit plans offered.

The spread sheet is still a work in process…I’m now collecting the number of current employees to get a better understanding of why some cities have the pension costs they do. The pension story will come later.

(City administrators: If you see any figures that are incorrect, please shoot me an email so we can correct them. Thanks!)


  • Anonymous

    Wow. Great job jennifer. Now THIS is reporting! Gathering info, analysis, spreadsheets. Bravo.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t know what a .sxc file is, can’t open it.

  • Another anonymous

    How about putting the info in a pdf, so that the majority of your readers can read the information.