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Providence pension plan upheld as 'fair'

Superior Court Judge Taft-Carter supported the reform, which includes a cap on pensions

Rhode Island Superior Court Judge Sarah Taft-Carter voted to uphold last year’s Providence pension reform Monday.

Taft-Carter ruled that the pension agreement was “fair, reasonable and adequate,” according to a press release.

Providence Mayor Angel Taveras negotiated last year’s reform as a measure to address the city’s large structural deficit by streamlining its unsustainable pension plan. The city workers’ unions, which include police officers and firefighters, agreed to a cap on pensions, a 10-year freeze on cost-of-living adjustments, the movement of workers over age 65 to Medicare and the elimination of 5- and 6- percent compounded COLAs for the city’s pensioned workers. The reform is projected to save the city $18.5 million this fiscal year, the Providence Journal reported.

Taft-Carter told the Providence Journal that only 14 out of more than 1,300 retirees have filed written complaints. Only five retirees have opted out of the new pension program so far, the Providence Journal reported. They have until April 1 to do so.

The final court hearing to judge the legality of the reform will occur April 12, according to the press release.


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