February 2021
Here Are The Resources You Need to Become a Better Tracker of Proposed Legislation
BLOG POST - Texas public-employee pension plan trustees and administrators can access online resources to keep up to date on proposed legislation that could impact their systems and membership. 

Learn more about this topic and additional legislative happenings on our Capitol Update blog page by clicking the link below.

TEXPERS' Board of Directors Appoints
Terry Bratton to Vacancy
BLOG POST - TEXPERS' Board of Directors recently appointed Terry Bratton to fill a vacancy left by board member Billy Samuel's death.

Samuel died on Jan. 11 after being diagnosed with COVID-19. The board held a virtual meeting on Feb. 10 to fill the vacancy. 

Bratton is filling Position 6, a police trustee slot, on the TEXPERS Board. He represents the Houston Police Officer's Board of Trustees, of which he is serving as the plan's vice-chairman. 

Key Pension Committee Recommends Pension Review Board Changes to Legislature
BLOG POST - The Texas legislative committee that oversees state and local pensions passed the Pension Review Board’s recommendations for changes to the funding policy and third-party review bills to the Legislature for possible action. It also followed the PRBs concerns that the agency should be given more enforcement powers.

Popular Post From the TEXPERS Blog
When Portfolios Don't Deliver Outcomes as Expected, the Number One Question is 'Why?'
BLOG POST - Pensions and other institutional investors are struggling with portfolio underperformance and outcomes that differ from intended results. If they understand why this happens, they can adapt their investment approaches to improve risk-adjusted performance. The Risk Report from Northern Trust Asset Management offers insights into this challenge. Michael Hunstad, Ph.D., head of quantitative strategies, answers some questions about the findings from his team’s research.

Membership Magazine
The first edition of TEXPERS Pension Observer for 2021 here. We have an expanded edition printed and in the mail to our members. However, you can access a digital copy of the magazine now.

Click here or on the magazine cover at left to access your digital flipbook.
Want to Advertise in TEXPERS'
Membership Magazine? Here's How!
TEXPERS' quarterly publication Pension Observer offers its members advertising packages you will want to take advantage of before they expire. Click here to see our 2021 Rate Sheet.
Mark Your Calendar
TEXPERS' 2021 Legislative Workshop
Set for March 30 and 31 in Austin
WORKSHOP - TEXPERS is hosting a Legislative Advocacy Workshop Tuesday, March 30 and Wednesday, March 31 at the DoubleTree Suites by Hilton in Austin, Texas.

State and local public pension plan trustees and administrators are invited to register for the 1- and half-day program to learn about proposed legislation impacting public pensions as well as how to become a more effective advocate for secure retirement. The program will feature legislative, pension and government relations experts who are sure to make this an informative event.
The agenda is still being planned, but you can register for the workshop now by clicking here. More information is on the way. Follow TEXPERS on Facebook and Twitter and visit our website for the latest updates.
TEXPERS' 2021 Annual Conference and
Training to be Held May 21-26
CONFERENCE - After careful consideration, and in light of the ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) developments, the Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems' Board decided to postpone its annual trustee training and conference to May 21-26.
The location at the Austin Marriott Downtown, 304 E. Cesar Chavez St. in Austin, has not changed. To learn more and register, click the link below.

Texas & U.S. Public Pensions
COVID relief package could help Texas bolster pension funds for teachers, state workers
NEWS ARTICLE - With President Joe Biden and a Democratic-controlled Congress moving ahead on a coronavirus relief package, Texas budget writers are beginning to look at how they might use federal funds for one-time “investments,” such as bolstering pension funds for retired teachers and state workers.

Note: Site may require subscription to access article.
On the Agenda: Police and Fire
Pension Fixes in Dallas
NEWS ARTICLE - Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson appoints a board to address lingering problems in the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System.

Florida GOP Senators Advance Bill to Shut Out Future Government Workers From Pension Plan
NEWS ARTICLE - After years of discussions about the tricky issue of overhauling Florida’s retirement system for government employees, a Senate committee [on Feb 4] approved a proposal that would shut future workers out of a traditional pension plan.

The proposal, sponsored by Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability Chairman Ray Rodrigues, R-Estero, would require new employees as of July 1, 2022, to enroll in a 401(k)-style “investment” plan. Employees currently are allowed to choose whether to take part in the pension plan or the investment plan.

Massachusetts State Pension Fund Sees Record-breaking Returns, Reaches All-time High
NEWS ARTICLE - Following market volatility and uncertainty at play through much of the first half of 2020, a strong second-half performance for the Massachusetts state pension fund -- the largest six-month return in its 37-year history -- helped drive the fund up to an all-time high of $86.9 billion by the end of 2020.

Ex-chief Perez Fights to Keep
His Bridgeport Pension After Guilty Plea
NEWS ARTICLE - As he awaits sentencing for cheating to get the job of top cop and then lying about it, the city’s disgraced ex-police chief is trying to keep the state Attorney General from reducing or eliminating his annual $102,000 pension.

Public Pensions on The Agenda in Kentucky
BLOG POST - Pensions are expected to be on the agenda as Kentucky's General Assembly convenes for a legislative session that runs through March 30.

Aldermen Pass Controversial Firefighters Pension Change
NEWS ARTICLE - The Board of Aldermen on Friday gave final approval to legislation giving a firefighter-controlled board supervision of all city fire pensions over the objections of two key city financial officials.

Chicago Firemen's Fund Recruiting
for Executive Director
NEWS ARTICLE - Chicago Firemen's Annuity & Benefit Fund is searching for an executive director.

The $863 million pension fund has issued a job posting due to the recent departure of Steve Swanson, who joined the $314 million Chicago Park Employees' Annuity & Benefit Fund on Feb. 1 as its new executive director, following the resignation of Dean J. Niedospial in December. 

Note: Site may require subscription to access article.
Education, Research, and Studies
Public Pensions Increasingly
Rely on Investment Earnings
BLOG POST - Public pension funds derived 71% of their revenue from their investment earnings last year, up from 69% in both 2019 and 2018, according to an annual study from the National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS).

Employer and employee contributions made up the rest of the revenue, accounting for 20% and 9%, respectively. The share of revenue from employer contributions declined from 22% in 2019, while the share of revenue from employee contributions remained unchanged. 

New Research Shows
the Resilience of Public Pensions
BLOG POST - The National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) released a new report last month showing that public pensions stayed on solid financial footing despite the coronavirus-induced economic downturn.

Economy & Investments
Texas Rises to World's Ninth Largest Economy
NEWS ARTICLE - Texas entered 2021 as the world’s ninth-largest economy, according to the Texas Economic Development Corporation, a nonprofit organization in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and Tourism.

Since 2015, Texas has been recognized as the world’s 10th largest economy — ahead of Canada and South Korea and behind Brazil.

Longtime Houston Apartment Developer Morgan Enters Phoenix Market
NEWS ARTICLE - Morgan, a longtime apartment developer and operator based in Houston, has entered the Arizona market with the opening of Pearl Biltmore, a 472-unit mid-rise in Phoenix. The property was developed in a joint venture with Chicago-based Mesirow.

Pearl Biltmore, on five acres at Highland Avenue and 24th Street, is surrounded by more than 7.4 million square feet office space, medical offices, resorts and retail near the Biltmore Fashion Park.

The $10.5 Billion Emergency Preparation Market
NEWS ARTICLE - This was the year that coronavirus fears turned American shoppers into hoarders. There have been widespread shortages on products like toilet paper, hand sanitizer and flour as people prepared for the long stretches of isolation that have become commonplace during the pandemic.

But for one segment of the population, preparing for the worst was a way of life even before the pandemic. “Preppers” or “survivalists,” as they’re known, have been around for years, buying elaborate survival kits, yearlong supplies of nonperishable foods and even elaborate underground bunkers.

A Major Pension Bought Tesla and Schwab Stock. Here's What It Sold.
NEWS ARTICLE - One of the largest public pensions in the U.S. just disclosed substantial changes in its stock investments.

Note: Site may require subscription to access article.
Here's How Much Americans Have Saved in Their 401(k)s at Every Age
NEWS ARTICLE - Check out the average amount of money Americans have saved in their Fidelity accounts as of the fourth quarter of 2020, as well as how much their contributions are in relation to their salaries.

New Data Show Few Americans Have Borrowed From Retirement During Pandemic
NEWS ARTICLE - A survey last month from Kiplinger and digital wealth management company Personal Capital found that 60% of respondents had taken some form of withdrawal from their IRA or 401(k) during the coronavirus pandemic, but new data suggests those numbers were a bit high.

Click logos to learn more
about out newsletter supporters
About Us 
The Texas Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (TEXPERS) is a statewide voluntary nonprofit association that provides education and legislative advisory services to the trustees, administrators, professional service providers and employee groups that manage the retirement money of police, firefighters, municipal and district employees in cities across Texas.