PLP: “Pension Freeze Is An Unacceptable Move”

June 30, 2014

“An across the board pension freeze is an unacceptable move and all Bermudians should take note of this government’s shameful attack on retirees,” Deputy PLP Leader Derrick Burgess said today.

Saying there is “no simple remedy to resolve the unfunded positions of the public sector pension plans, Finance Minister Bob Richards tabled the Pensions (Increase) Amendment and Suspension Act 2014 on Friday, which seeks to eliminate the mandatory requirement to provide a cost of living increase for pensions paid to retired government employees, former Ministers and Members of the Legislature.

Mr. Burgess’ full statement follows below:

The OBA have once again demonstrated that shared sacrifice only applies to some Bermudians by freezing pensions for retired workers after raising fees on seniors. At the same time the OBA have given millions of dollars in tax handouts to business and certain employers.

In many cases, these retirees worked hard in Bermuda for decades. To have pension payments frozen indefinitely by the OBA shows an insensitivity to their contributions and to their quality of life. Many are living on a fixed income, and their expenses continue to rise in the form of health care, groceries, electricity, and fees.

In fact, under the OBA:

  • Hospital Costs for Seniors have risen by 10%
  • Health Insurance has risen by 8%
  • Vehicle Licensing and Passport renewal fees were raised

The OBA claimed that the Ministry of Finance and the Pension and Benefits Working Group formed under the Public Sector Reform are in support of this recommendation. I have learned from the Trade Union Congress that this is in fact, not true. The OBA appears to have made this move without consultation and this is unacceptable.

The Minister of Finance shows the OBA’s continued detachment to the problems plaguing every day Bermudians with the tabling of this legislation. An across the board pension freeze is an unacceptable move and all Bermudians should take note of this government’s shameful attack on retirees.

Today action makes it clear that Premier Dunkley and the OBA do not believe in shared sacrifice. They believe in sharing tax breaks with the private sector while inflicting sacrifice on middle-class Bermudians and our seniors.

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Comments (65)

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  1. trulytruly says:

    Easy to criticise. Harder to come up with an alternative that is more palatable. The PLP must be feeling happier everyday that they are not the ones in the driver’s seat having to make hard unpopular decisions.

    • LiarLiar says:

      I said before the 2012 election and still believe it now, that the PLP should have been the ones that retained power that December night.

      It should be their Party that had to make the tough but necessary decisions such as this one. It was their actions that contributed greatly to our current position and now they get to sit back and pretend like they had nothing to do with it or the resulting actions that have to be taken and that the Government is this, that and the other.

      Don’t be fooled because numbers and money doesn’t discriminate and the PLP wouldn’t have been able to aviod the inevitable. If they were in power they would have had to do the same thing that is happening now. It was evidenced by their 5% curt to civil servant salaries towards the end of their reign and their acknowledgement on the need to reignin Government spending.

      I truly wish the PLP won that night.

      • SMH says:

        Liar liar I disagree that the PLP would have many ANY of these difficult decisions as they just dont have either the political will nor do they still understand the magnitude of the problem. It would have been business as usual until either the UK or the IMF stepped in then it would be all about the need for independence (again clueless) and getting out from under the yoke of colonialist powers. It will never, ever, be the PLP fault as far as they’re concerned. the fact that Derrick Burgess can say the thing he does about the poor seniors and shared sacrifice with a straight face says it all. Now that’s satanic

    • If you only know how stupid and sickening you sound,we all need to pay attention because it is a crying shame when we have to attack the ones whose labor to make us what we are is not respected to the highest order.

      Those who are pensioners now are truly the ones that have given into the system and deserve to get back from it,including increase in living expenses. instead we have a whole lot of you mothers with three and four children for all different fathers, benefiting off the public purse, from housing to child care and food, utilities.most of whom who are unemployed or unemployable.

      I have nothing against people getting help but they should be made to give back into the same system they are taking from,There are those who have worked over 30 years in this country and can’t get no where close to what I see some of these young folk getting who has not even enter the work force or barely no what work ethic is.

      So before you go attacking the P.L.P, take a look at these damn jokers that are running this country at present and see how some of their decision making is way off.

      • Ellie says:

        @ Mr. Santucci. I may not always agree with you but you are 100 per cent correct on this one , and as a matter of fact, I always say our seniors are our foundation and they deserve every last penny they could get. and it is a crying shame on how THIS,GOV,,,and the PREVIOUS GOV looked after our seniours.. so as far as JOKERS weather its PLP.UBP.OBA.or any P you like it all comes down to them selves they just want it to look pretty attacking one another wile others suffer PLP.wouldnt do any better,,how many times did they shout at the late Miss,Jackson for wanting to do more for our seniours ? PLP,OBA.they have any money they want for what ever they come up with BUT when it comes to our SENIOURS they are always forgotten ….

        • Um Um Like says:

          I thought reading Duane’s posts were funny. You’re absolutely hilarious!

      • BETTTY TRUMP says:

        NO LOVE FOR OUR SENIORS BY THIS OBAubp GOVERNMENT !

        OBAubp working in the best interest of our Seniors, I guess NOT…

        Hospital Costs for Seniors have risen by 10%
        Health Insurance has risen by 8%
        Vehicle Licensing and Passport renewal fees were raised

        Seniors I think you have been overlooked by this OBAUbp government. It is sad that you must be faced with such, during your golden years. Seniors have done so much for this country, and now the government makes living during their best years even more difficult. I sure Mrs. Jackson must listening in the clouds with great disguise and anger due to her love of Seniors… ITs all forgotten now Mrs. Jackson by this OBAUbp govt.

        Duane P Santucci thanks for your comment it is spot on !!

        • BETTTY TRUMP says:

          NO LOVE FOR THE AVERAGE EVERY DAY BERMUDIAN BY THIS OBAubp GOVERNMENT!

          Seems like the actions of this government is for the those whom have, rather than those who have Not….

          “The Minister of Finance shows the OBA’s continued detachment to the problems plaguing every day Bermudians with the tabling of this legislation. An across the board pension freeze is an unacceptable move and all Bermudians should take note of this government’s shameful attack on retirees.”….sad sad ….as our people hurt even more..while those of certain sector grow richer….

          • Joonya says:

            Here come the green and white pom poms..

        • Ringmaster says:

          Did you even understand Duane’s comments. Here is part:

          Those who are pensioners now are truly the ones that have given into the system and deserve to get back from it,including increase in living expenses. instead we have a whole lot of you mothers with three and four children for all different fathers, benefiting off the public purse, from housing to child care and food, utilities.most of whom who are unemployed or unemployable.

          So he is condemning those on benefits who have contributed nothing, but have nothing. Sounds somewhat callous even if right. Aren’t those the underprivileged that the PLP say they look after and support? So who does the PLP look after?

      • SMH says:

        Why don’t you call Paula or Ewart and ask them what they pensions look like and if they’re willing to fund all this. Cause you know They and Theirs made out like bandits

      • Edna J Dixon says:

        IIf there is no money, there is no money. Shared sacrifice is the way to go.

  2. Soooo says:

    How about ALL MP’s and appointed Cabinet and Senate Members give up their pay (and pensions) I’m sure Derrick would agree to that!!

  3. Skeptic says:

    Good grief – so many governments and municipalities around the world are being bled dry or have gone into bankruptcy due to their pension and benefit structures that significantly outpaced what was found in the private sector. It is ironic that the civil servants, including former Ministers, seem to get better health care and pension benefits than the rest of the working population; seems to be a fair amount of self dealing leading to the problem! What is even more ironic is that this comes from the former BIU director whose members have precious little benefits to show for years of paying into that organizations failed business ventures and poor judgement.It is a very tough environment for all of our citizens, but please be realistic and genuine about solutions instead of using this as an opportunity to spew more hatred at your political opponents in the hope that your supporters might think you actually have some useful way to deal with the reality of the present day shambles of what used to be a great community.

  4. Justin says:

    This is rich coming from someone who received payments from gov’t for doing nothing which is one of the many reasons why we find ourselves in this financial hole. The private sector has been taking hits for years, now it is the civil service’s turn.

    Given the task of balancing the budget, would the PLP slash the civil service or would they opt to save jobs by shared sacrifice? The OBA has opted for every to sacrifice a little bit in order to keep people employed. What would the PLP do differently?

    Typical PLP – quick to criticize but offer no solutions or alternative options.

  5. LiarLiar says:

    What is the PLP’s plan for fixing the unsustainable pension funds which are billions underfunded? Under their tenure the funding gap grew enormously and even then they allowed for the suspension of pension contributions which only made it worse. So yes the PLP directly contributed to this issue and now have the nerve to complain about how to fix it without offering ONE solution. Instead they want to play petty politricks even though they know the full extent of the problem (or at least one hopes they do).

    Most countries have actually reduced pension payments altogether, so we should consider ourselves lucky that this only a temporary suspension of the cost of living increases.

    And if the PLP was against tax breaks then why did they vote in favor of them (i.e. Hamilton Princess redevelopment)? The PLP even admonished the Government for getting the actual amount of the tax break given to the Greens wrong in the House. Now all of a sudden they are bad? Well what would have happened if they didn’t provide such incentives to get such projects off the ground? I will tell you, the PLP would have ranted and raved about how the Government hates construction workers and the like.

    Also, please remind me how much healthcare related costs were reduced in the PLP’s 14 years? Oh that’s right they didn’t and actually increased each and every year. On top of that every opportunity the OBA has looked at in reducing healthcare costs has been vehemently opposed by the Opposition. If it wasn’t the closure of the boo boo clinic in St. Davids then it was the opposing of regulating over used high-tech treatments by doctors looking to get even richer.

    As for their constant cries on vehicle licensing fees, lets remind the PLP of their flawed policy of free car licensing which saw something of a 300% spike in SUVs being passed in the names of senior citizens. It was being abused because of the lack of foresight by the PLP as is the case for most of their legislation (i.e. drunk driving, PRC, Whites Island lease etc.)

    Maybe Burgess is just upset that along with all retirees this decision also affects current and retired MPs and Senators.

    So before the usual suspects cry foul answer the following:

    - What solutions have been offered by the Opposition to close the unsustainable pension funding gap? If I recall correctly the SAGE report noted that anyone under 35 as of now will never see their pension contributions if the same path is followed.

    - Why is Burgess crying over healthcare cost increases as if they somehow leveled off or decreased under his Party’s tenure? Also, healthcare costs have increased for EVERYBODY not just seniors.

    - Why does Burgess believe that keeping an obviously abused ‘free’ licensing policy in place?

    - Why is Burgess decrying the same tax breaks that his Party voted unanimously for? Does Burgess hate the construction workers of this island which these tax breaks were offered as a means to stimulate activity in this vital sector?

    The Greens responded with this after the tax concessions actwas passed in July 2013, “We would like to thank both the Government and Opposition for unanimously passing the Hotels Concession (Fairmont Hamilton) Order 2013 and we are delighted to be moving forward with the renovations project at The Fairmont Hamilton Princess,” the owners said in a statement released this afternoon.”

    Burgess, keep your silly politricks to yourself if you have nothing constructive to say. Not one solution was offered in your silly little press release and nothing that benefits Bermudians.

  6. JH says:

    Every time the Government tries to cut something back to save money the PLP moans about it. If PLP hadn’t been so careless with our money we wouldn’t be in this mess. Honestly PLP, who do think is listening? Perhaps your few remaining faithful – the ones who clearly do not have the ability to see any type of reason.

    It is so sad to see once great party taking its last breath. Your pathetic ramblings are quite embarrassing.

    Flatts, Bermuda

  7. Kiskadee says:

    All retired MP’ s should not have pensions .they are having a wonderful time traveling the world while retired Govt workers are struggling on their small pensions

    • SMH says:

      Small pensions. Ha the rest of us should be so lucky. you have no clue how out of proportion the civil srrvant pensions and benefits are compared to the rest of us. whenwas the last time YOU got a cost of living adjustment? And now you want me to suffer so the underworkered, over paid civil servants can keep their undeserved cushy benefits. Heck no. You can stop the poor poor retiree crap right now please because quite frankly its an insult to the rest of the workers having to pay for it all.

    • Kisskadee 4:05pm. I also agree, they do not need a pension after stepping down or having been voted out. Far too much money has been / is given away especially when Bermuda needs every damn penny it can scratch-up to “save face”.

  8. serengeti says:

    It makes you wonder why the PLP decided to suspend contributions to the pension fund doesn’t it. They increased pension payouts by greater than the rate of inflation for years, and did nothing at all about the under-funding. In fact, the PLP suspended pension contributions. And now they pretend to be surprised it didn’t turn out well.

  9. John E. Thorne says:

    If the PLP would have listened to Bob Richards before and during the recession instead of spending money like drunken sailors then he wouldn’t have to make tough decisions like this one! As one who has been unemployed for 30 months and is spending his pension 10 plus years before retirement I sympathise but understand the decision. We all have to do what we have to do to make ends meet. Are the PLP MP’s willing to repay the salaries they were paid but didn’t deserve while bankrupting the country? If not I respectfully ask them to shut up and let the OBA clean up the mess they caused!!!

  10. JH says:

    If PLP was still in power (God forbid), I wonder what they’d be doing to correct our financial situation? Burying their heads at Horseshoe Bay perhaps? Printing loads more Bermuda money so we’d all be rich perhaps? Starting another ‘circle a gold’ like that lady down Shelly Bay? Snake oil perhaps?

    PLP proved that they were AWFUL with money. They have no room to talk and only those of the lowest intellect could possibly still be listeining to theire worthless comments.

    As I said in a previous comment, you are embarrassing yourselves. I’d ask you to come up with a solution – but of course you don’t have one do you?

    Flatts, Bermuda

  11. Navin Johnson says:

    The PLP gave themselves big pension increases hoping someone would figure out how to pay them….

  12. watching says:

    Comments are funny.
    Even if you feel that the PLP are to blame for everything wrong with Bermuda, it still doesn’t mean that this segment of retired government workers should pay the price at this stage of their lives. I agree with Mr. Burgess wholeheartedly. The OBA has shown little financial restraint themselves yet continue to harp on the 14 years prior. How much has been spent on travel? How much are we paying the Tourism Authority executives? We will never know because Crockwell won’t say. But I bet it is a significant amount that could offset some of the sacrifice the seniors are being asked to make.

    • SMH says:

      Wow how clueless. I can’t beleive that there are people that have such litle understanding or what happening here and fall for the PLP b$ll crap. The current retirement pln is nothing more than a pyramid scheme because it’s a definited bemefit plan and everywhere else in the world people went to defined contributions at least 20-30 years ago because there is not possible way a defined benefit plan can be sustained especially in a dwindling population

  13. Alvin Williams says:

    Hard and unpopular decisions? How about this one; real tax reform in Bermuda instead of giving government social assistance to business concerns that have shown they rather not hire Bermudians. Instead this OBA government finance minster with a straight face would rather fleece those who can least can afford it.

    • Kangoocar says:

      Being this effects you alvin, I can tell you that you are sounding like you just ate a case of sour grapes?? But I am interested in your suggestion of real tax reform?? This should be hilarious!!! Also why did you not for second condemn your plp while they were running our bank accounts dry and when they were done with that, threw us all into a debt hole that 50 yrs from now will be still being paid for!!! I understand your socialist thinking but as Margaret Thatcher said, the problem with socialism is, you have no money to spend when you run out of everybody’s money!!!!! I thought you would like that quote???

  14. Chartery says:

    These defined benefit pensions should have been ended years ago as these problems were foreseen a long time ago. Those pensions are unfunded. ie there is no money to pay their obligations. When Gov is flush, you can wiggle by. But when Gov is deeply in debt, all bets are off. In the commercial world, we’d call that bankrupt.
    Virtually every worker in the private sector has been on a defined contribution pension for a long long time.
    It’s so insane that the PLP gets away with this bleating as we all know they are the root cause of the problem by creating the terrible debt hole.

  15. U ask me….retro active legislative behaviour is a two edged sword….every time you do something know this….and then think about who your doing it to.

  16. Kangoocar says:

    Seriously burgess??? ” all Bermudians should take note on this shameful attack on retires??” Let me tell you that, all Bermudians should remember what you and your plp did to ALL Bermudians!!! You bunch of incompetents ran the bank accounts dry and when that wasn’t enough, put us all in a massive debt!!! We now are all responsible for debts that amount to BILLIONS of $$$$ that not only are we living Bermudians responsible for but future Bermudians not even born 20 yrs from now will be paying for!!!! Until you can come up with something constructive to say, Why don’t you try staying quite and let us all assume you are ignorant as opposed to opening your mouth and removing all doubt????

  17. campervan says:

    when you are down 6,000 expats who were padding out the numbers and outside investment gets flighty, well it all unravels doesn’t it.

    • Kangoocar says:

      @campervan, your are absolutely correct!!! But the chances of the brainwashed plp xenophobes understanding that is ZERO!!!!!!!

  18. Alvin Williams says:

    Kangoocar- you who has threaten so many times to leave Bermuda; you still here hiding from the American tax man? I told you the causeway is still open. You have better get moving it’s hurricane season and we close the causeway once the wind gets up.
    Kangoocar still in Bermuda hiding from the American tax man. Some one tell me if the Americans are giving out awards for turning in tax dodgers so they can put one of their drones right over his house; pick him right up as he steps out of his door-courtesy of president Obama.

    • Kangoocar says:

      Alvin, what part of I am Bermudian did you miss??? Even though the pigmentation of my skin is lighter than yours, I can tell you that being your grandmother was born here, That makes me a lot more Bermudian than you!!! My roots go back to the mid 1700′s. Get over it!!! I don’t have to hide from anyone!! But I did note, you have not given us your tax reform ideas????

    • JD says:

      Now that’s just a whole pile of crazy.

  19. Ringmaster says:

    The loss of 6,000 expats directly impacts the Pension Funding (apart from all the other lost income) as they paid into the Fund, but saw no benefits. Bermuda has been fortunate in living off other peoples’ money for so long it has forgotten how to live from its own resources. The vast increase in Government employees since 1998 has increased the funding gap. Government employees live outside the shared sacrifice as they have guaranteed employment (for now) and bloated pensions compared to the private sector.

  20. SMH says:

    Folks brace your self because this is only going to get worse when there is less and less $ to go around. I recommend that Governemrn puts together a comprehensive presentation that clearly explains the situation so people understand it and know how rediculous the PLP really sound in light of our current reality.

    • Kangoocar says:

      You are absolutely correct, the TUC was on ZBM tonight threatening a long hot summer??? I say let’s get it over with and break them NOW!!! I can assure all, those that actually live within their means and are responsible citizens of Bermuda will not starve to death before they do!!! The OBA needs to grow a pair and stand up to this this nonsense!!! Thankfully I am one of the responsible and hunger will not be my problem!!! I think now is the time to break the nonsense of these imbeciles!!!!!

  21. Poor guy says:

    THIS PLACE IS GOING TO BE LIKE HAITI IN 5 YRS TIME,WATCH AND SEE.
    PLP SUPPORTERS WILL SEE TO IT.

    • Given the opportunity, there will be no doubts. The Progressive Labour Party had got us all, (everyone) in this rut and give them “the power once again, well need I say more? :-(

  22. SMH says:

    Derrick, Furby, Beanie, Burtie and Chrisy are all out in a life raft and in order to save Bermuda’s economy, one needs to get pushed out first. Who you pick? Then who after that. One rule of the game though is that you can’t cheat and save the economy by single handedly turning over the entire boat.

  23. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    O.B.A. Shame on you !

  24. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    I often worked through my lunch hour
    I was never late for work ever.
    I did not go home until I finished my projects.
    I often got caught out in the rain.
    I did my bosses job, when he was skiving off.
    I taught my self computer skills.
    I used my own transportation.
    I drove two cars to the Airport dump.
    I did not charge mileage, it was too petty.
    I sure loved my job
    I loved every minute of what i did. for the GOVERNMENT
    and the people of our country.

    You will never know who i am……….. just a Senior

    Thank you !

    • JUNK YARD DOG says:

      You 14 don’t get it do you and I guess that you never will.

      There are millions of people who get great deal of personal satisfaction from what they do, it all about helping others, these people give there very best it is call ” Work ethic”.

      K.E.M.H. is a prime example of exemplary work ethic,
      most likely you 14 could not cut it.

      Think positive; act positive ; be positive for once, it is already to late.

      There are three things.

      1) You are competing on a global market.

      2) This island is going no where until the USA recovers.

      3) This island is going no where until you discover that

      ” The man who works from 9 to 5 has nothing, the man who works from 9 to 9 has every thing “.

  25. Kevin says:

    To be frank and blunt why should these “Special Pensioners” get a cost of living increase that is just plain wrong . I believe my pension will be set once i go 65 and last time i checked there is no clause saying i get a COL increase . I also don’t see the government saying they are not paying the pension just no more COL increases …hell no ..no more the crap has to stop PLP – Burgess,,,whoever you think you are you have proven to me and by the way i already was very aware on how inept you were of governing now all all you is prove me right …DAILY …..go back to school yes to school because clearly you failed basic Math

    • Maggie May says:

      I am 75 year old Bermudian with roots back to early 1800s. I worked for an international company here in Bermuda for 25 years after which I retired. I receive a modest pension from them with no hope of a cost of living raise. My pension is what it is now until my death.
      Why should the “poor” civil service etc. etc. be any different?

  26. old timer says:

    The P.L.P. can not get over the fact that they are no longer in charge!!!!! like a caller to the talk show said today… the PLP were all about having a Hollywood party ( play boy) and travel. and else for what we paid for Beyoncé !!!!!!!!!! what the hell was Brown thinking about ?

  27. bermudaboy says:

    I’m a senior. PLP/BIU you can’t get blood out of a stone. I will wait until things are a bit better before looking for a “raise” If you would have been fair with the Bermudian public when you were in power (sorry have to throw up every time I say that) we wouldn’t be in this position. Saying everything’s fine, doesn’t make it so.

    • SMH says:

      I think Mr Richards needs to explain what this all means. This new legislation doen’t mean that retirees won’t be getting cost of living increase but that the pension fund balance will not be topped up by the cost of living index for the forseeable future. It’s all about the funding of the Goverment pension plan ( which are already under funded by almost $2 Billion) and not the actual pension payments. If i were him I would also stop adjusting those dor the cost of living index (like the rest of us in the private sector) as part of the effort to curb expenses. After the payroll of the civil service the second largest cost in interest and the third is the annual cost of living adjustment to the pension plans. What about presenting the PLP with the amount of cuts that are required this year and then give them a time line to come back with their suggestions of where They think the cuts should come from….not a lot of options here because you can’t cut interest so headdount cuts? Benefit cuts? Early retirement? Reduced social plans? Reduced financial assistance. Come on PLP where do you think the Gov should get it’s momey from?…

  28. Pangaea says:

    SOLUTION !

    Dig up all of the Golf courses and plant Bermuda Onions for export !

    Give last night of 5 night stay at a hotel……… free.

    Turn Harrington sound into a gigantic Fish Farm

    Have a tourist Destination “Seat Lottery Draw” on one of our Air carriers ie : seat 3 B flies free

  29. It’s time for gaming people! Wake up and smell the coffee – we need to create jobs, put people back to work and get $ from visitors and those who have disposable income back into the Country’s coffers.

    We cant keep hoping that the $ will just fall from a tree – we need to be practical and take on an industry that will bring some relief to the financial pains we have. Lets get off of the wall and get into the game – this is one option that will cost us nothing and we stand to gain many things!

  30. in demand says:

    In other words the CS (over bloated) has sucked the “private sector” DRY! Why? Because WE the “private sector” can’t NO longer SUPPORT (sustain) your pension anymore! WHy because Bermuda has UNSUSTAINABLE debt!

  31. Bunch of Blanks! says:

    There are Bermudians that “have”,, because they have worked and saved and spent for what they need not what they want!
    There are Bermudians that don’t “have” because they work and Spend, spend,spend on crap they don`t need! Very much like the PLP did in their reign of Terror as Government with the unbeliveble waste of 100`s of millions of dollars. What a bunch of Blanks !

  32. X man says:

    The people of Bermuda clearly understand that measures have to be taken in order to get Bermuda’s Financial situation
    back track but to pick on the Pensions could be a low blow for so many who rely on it to live.
    This unpopular among the not so wealthy will have bad lasting effects for many years to come and could be the perfect platform for a long lasting PLP attack.- that could create an illusion that the OBA is looking out for the hearts of the wealthy.– to mess with the
    Pensions is not a good idea.

  33. Farmer Giles says:

    This is a necessary step in cleaning up the mess/waste left behind by the Previous Labour Party. They need to put on their big-boy pants and take ownership of their mis-governance.
    What I would ask Derrick Burgess and others – would they care to elaborate on their plans help Bermuda in locating/recovering that rogue and pesky $800million???
    No?
    Thought as much…

  34. clearasmud says:

    The pension fund has been underfunded for the past 20 plus years and so it is no surprise that it has only gotten worse. The problem I have is that the government has tabled a bill that has far reaching ramifications that have not been fully explored. They site the SAGE commision report as a justification for taking this path but they have never had any real discussion about the SAGE findings with the public. They have not officially stated what recommendations they support and which they do not! They have not said how they plan to proceed with the ones they accept so consequentially there has been no real public discussion on the merits of many of the SAGE recommendations! How is the public susposed to know if the choices that are being made are the best choices if there are no proper consultations?

  35. Gotham says:

    The choices are stark either way: cut back pensions and free up funds for investment, or raise taxes to fund pensions and sacrifice investment… Either way, rather than the present arrogance and beligerence, the creators of this mess (corrupt PLP ministers, corrupt inevery sense by the way) owe the entire country a humble apology.

    • Gotham, no-one could have said it better!
      “The measure of a country’s greatness is its ability to retain compassion in times of crisis.” (Thurggod Marshall,U.S. Supreme Court of Justice 1908 – 1993)

    • James Herald says:

      Unfortunately, an apology is the one thing we will never get from the PLP. Their arrogance is beyond measure. If they ever get voted back in then Bermuda is finished. They are the essence of incompetence and have never taken the slightest responsibility for their reckless financial actions. They therefore do not deserve any respect – let alone forgivness.