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scooterscot
3rd July 2011, 08:12
Official figures show there are 17,000 more people drawing a civil service pension than are currently working as civil servants


Retired civil servants now outnumber those employed in the civil service for the first time, leaving the taxpayer with a £7.4 billion annual bill for their pensions.

Official figures show there are 17,000 more people drawing a civil service pension than are currently working as civil servants. The total bill represents a 30% rise in just four years.

Pensions experts said the figures were evidence of the “unsustainable” economics of public sector pensions and strengthen the case for reforms.

The runaway costs have been caused by a combination of generous final salary pension arrangements, retired people living longer and widespread early retirement among civil servants.

Analysis of government accounts also suggests that the number of retired classroom staff receiving a teacher’s pension will overtake the number of those working within the next three years.

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/uk_news/Society/article661836.ece

xoggoth
3rd July 2011, 16:04
Do I have to pay £2 a week to read this thread?

scooterscot
3rd July 2011, 18:11
Do I have to pay £2 a week to read this thread?

I do.

Here's the whole story then.


Retired civil servants now outnumber those employed in the civil service for the first time, leaving the taxpayer with a £7.4 billion annual bill for their pensions.

Official figures show there are 17,000 more people drawing a civil service pension than are currently working as civil servants. The total bill represents a 30% rise in just four years.

Pensions experts said the figures were evidence of the “unsustainable” economics of public sector pensions and strengthen the case for reforms.

The runaway costs have been caused by a combination of generous final salary pension arrangements, retired people living longer and widespread early retirement among civil servants.

Analysis of government accounts also suggests that the number of retired classroom staff receiving a teacher’s pension will overtake the number of those working within the next three years.

The figures have emerged days after hundreds of thousands of public sector workers took industrial action over planned cuts to pensions.

Ministers are trying to implement recommendations by Lord Hutton, the former Labour minister, to oblige public sector workers to pay more into their pensions, retire later and move to less generous benefits based on their average pay across their career rather than on their final salary.

A spokesman for the PCS, the biggest civil service union, claimed the fact that civil service pensioners now outnumbered those in service was “irrelevant”.

“What matters is whether these public sector pensions are affordable and Lord Hutton made it clear that they are,” he said.

“He shows that the proportion of GDP spent on paying these pensions has nearly peaked and will fall sharply in the years ahead.”

However, the Hutton report also said that pensions had to be reformed because they had become unfair to taxpayers and the current schemes had not responded “flexibly to changes in working lives and longevity.”

Government accounts show the number of officials paying into the civil service pension scheme fell from 617,000 in 2004 to 574,000 by April last year. Over the same period, the number of former officials receiving a pension rose from 549,000 to 591,000.

Meanwhile, the number of retired teachers on the teachers’ pension scheme soared from 445,000 in 2004 to 567,000 last year. Over the same period, the number of teachers paying into the scheme has remained at about 600,000.

If the trend continues, school staff claiming a pension will outnumber those in work within the next three years.

Sir Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary and head of the civil service, will receive payments equivalent to a pension pot of £2.3m. On his retirement he will be entitled to a lump sum of more than £305,000 and an annual income of at least £100,000 for the rest of his life.

O’Donnell is one of more than 20 public sector officials who have pensions worth more than £2m, according to government accounts. Others include Stephen Laws, the first parliamentary counsel, responsible for drafting legislation; Sir Liam Donaldson, former chief medical officer; and Sir David Normington, the commissioner for public appointments.

Civil servants make employee pension contributions of 3.5% of their salary. But according to analysis by Hymans Robertson, a firm of actuaries, employer contributions for the scheme average 18.9% of annual salary.

Private sector employees pay in an average of 4.5% of salary, with employers contributing a typical 7%.

New figures also show the increasing drain of the police pension scheme on the public purse. The Home Office provides “top-up” payments for officers’ pensions because of a funding shortfall. A parliamentary answer showed the top-up reached £721m in 2010-11, more than double the 2006-7 figure of £291m.

Philip Booth, programme director at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said the unsustainability of public sector pensions could be worsened in the short term by reductions in civil service numbers.

“Baby boomers are now retiring and people are living longer,” said Booth. “If the government succeeds in cutting the number of current civil servants, the number of people paying into the scheme could fall even further.”

Four trade unions took part in last Thursday’s industrial action to protest against pension reforms, but as many as 20 unions could mount further strikes this autumn.

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the PCS, described the negotiations between ministers and unions, which continue this week, as a “farce”.

The strike was not supported by any of the main political parties. This prompted Mary Bousted, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, to describe the position of Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, as “a disgrace”.

Old Greg
3rd July 2011, 18:23
Official figures show there are 17,000 more people drawing a civil service pension than are currently working as civil servants



http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/uk_news/Society/article661836.ece

So do we need to employ more civil servants to re-balance?

scooterscot
3rd July 2011, 19:31
So do we need to employ more civil servants to re-balance?

On no. We'll just make 999 a premium rate number.

thunderlizard
3rd July 2011, 19:33
How much of that is down to people who in the good old days would have been on the public payroll with a pension scheme; but are now doing the same jobs on short term contracts, or via outsourced suppliers?

scooterscot
3rd July 2011, 19:35
How much of that is down to people who in the good old days would have been on the public payroll with a pension scheme; but are now doing the same jobs on short term contracts, or via outsourced suppliers?


That sounds like experience talking there...

SueEllen
3rd July 2011, 21:07
How much of that is down to people who in the good old days would have been on the public payroll with a pension scheme; but are now doing the same jobs on short term contracts, or via outsourced suppliers?

A lot.

Interesting the NHS pension scheme isn't talked about and that's the largest employer in Europe.

Old Greg
3rd July 2011, 21:30
A lot.

Interesting the NHS pension scheme isn't talked about and that's the largest employer in Europe.

It's part of the proposed public sector pension reform.

xoggoth
3rd July 2011, 22:58
Ah it's in the DT.

Retired civil servants outnumber those working - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/8614173/Retired-civil-servants-outnumber-those-working.html)

I like free.

scooterscot
4th July 2011, 06:10
Ah it's in the DT.

Retired civil servants outnumber those working - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/8614173/Retired-civil-servants-outnumber-those-working.html)

I like free.

I like more than 5 two sentenced paragraphs...

xoggoth
4th July 2011, 08:57
Ah yes but you get the news twice in the DT to make up for it, Ratko Mladic and Hawker family news further down.

News - Latest breaking news - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/)

scooterscot
4th July 2011, 09:49
Ah yes but you get the news twice in the DT to make up for it, Ratko Mladic and Hawker family news further down.

News - Latest breaking news - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/)


I don't confuse quantity with quality!

SueEllen
4th July 2011, 10:52
It's part of the proposed public sector pension reform.

However it's a completely different scheme.

It will be interesting to see doctors etc revolt.

Mates have told me that the Labour party did try and reform their scheme, and change it to a "career average" but the the proposals were turned down.

I know that for female doctors with children who work part-time a "career average" may be better for them.

BlasterBates
4th July 2011, 11:27
Piece of good news at last. Far better to pay Civil Servants to do nothing, than to waste theirs and everyone elses time, maintaining their vast economically redundant bureacracy. The other positive thing is the more money is paid to Civil servants sitting around doing nothing, the less they'll have to spend on new ones, who will have nothing better to do than send brown envelopes, do annoying audits, and generally causing trouble, slicing off the wrong limbs, refusing planning permission etc etc.