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Thousands of Alberta city employees eligible for second or third pensions

Author: Franco Terrazzano 2020/11/12

CALGARY, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation released a report showing that thousands of city employees across Alberta are eligible for second or third city pensions when they retire. The second and third city pensions cost taxpayers $24.8 million in 2019.

“It’s crazy to think that while families are struggling to pay their grocery bills and businesses are struggling to keep their doors open, taxpayers are paying into second or third pensions for thousands of city employees,” said Franco Terrazzano, the CTF’s Alberta Director. “It’s time for councillors and mayors to do the right thing and end these golden perks.”

Through freedom of information requests, the CTF found that thousands of city employees, in municipalities with population above 30,000 people, are eligible to receive two or three pensions when they retire. The second and third pensions costs taxpayers $24.8 million in 2019.

Multiple pensions for Alberta’s city employees in 2019:

City

Employees set to receive two pensions

Employees set to receive three pensions

Taxpayer cost of second and third pensions

Calgary

2,201

134

$15,133,000

Edmonton

1,272

0

$4,312,000

Airdrie

277

0

$1,209,502

Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo

192

20

$986,377

Lethbridge

156

11

$921,000

Grande Prairie

186

5

$758,971

Red Deer

151

15 (ended for future employees)

$540,285

Strathcona County

89

0

$403,831

Spruce Grove

118

0

$392,615

St. Albert

17

4

$101,000

Leduc

14

0

$66,513

Rocky View County

5

0

$24,545

Lloydminster

0

0

0

Medicine Hat

0

0

0


First pension: City employees are eligible for the Local Authorities Pension Plan, which is a defined benefit plan that refers to itself as “quite generous.”

Second pension: The APEX Supplementary Pension Plan is the most common second pension plan and tops-up the LAPP. While Calgary and Edmonton are not included within the APEX plan, both cities offer top-up plans.

Third pension: The Overcap Supplementary Executive Retirement Program (MuniSerp) is the most common third pension offered and is a 100 per cent taxpayer-funded payment that supplements LAPP and the APEX pension plans. Calgary offers a similar third pension.

You can find the CTF’s report here.