Missouri pension plans by the numbers

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Most Missouri public employees are members of a taxpayer-supported retirement system. They all work essentially the same way, with annual contributions placed into investments ranging from stocks to real estate to government bonds. Some plans require employees to contribute. Each plan pays out a benefit based on the number of years of service and an average of three or five years' salary. The major pensions are the Missouri State Employees Retirement System, or MOSERS, the Public School Retirement System, the Local Government Employees Retirement System and the MoDOT and Patrol Employees Retirement System.

Major system assets, Jan. 1, 2008: $43 billion

Major system assets, Jan. 1, 2009: $33 billion

Major system members (current and retired): 289,853

30-year retirement payouts

State employees: 51 percent of pay

Public schools, educators: 75 percent of pay

Education support staff: 48.3 percent of pay*

Transportation and patrol: 51 percent of pay

Local governments: Varies based on local choice. In Southeast Missouri, participating governments have chosen 45 to 60 percent after 30 years.

Contribution rates as a percent of payroll

State employee system: 12.75 percent

Public schools, educators: 27 percent, split between educators and districts.

Transportation and Highway Patrol: MoDOT, 31.43 percent, Patrol, 39.88 percent

Local governments: Participating Southeast Missouri goverments contribute 4.4 percent to 19.3 percent.

Sample local costs

Southeast Missouri State University: $6.4 million, 2009-2010 fiscal year.

Cape Girardeau School District: $2.8 million, 2008-2009 school year.

Cape Girardeau: $1.1 million, 2008-2009 fiscal year

Scott City: $65,324, 2009 fiscal year

* Education support staff are also covered by Social Security.

Sources: Retirement systems, local officials

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