Accountants to blame for pension

MR AVIS, in his letter regarding local government pensions, makes the same point again essentially blaming local government employees for their pensions.

The pension is a condition of service like the wages, the hours and the work.

If blaming anyone it should be the accountants who did the actuarial work on the scheme – they knew the numbers, but of course could not know how the money market was going to perform and that’s the route of the problem.

The pension fund is invested and as returns decrease then the deficit increases, hopefully the economy will improve. And the deficit decrease.

The average pension of council worker is around £4,200 a year, which covers all council workers, many of whom are on very low pay.

But more than 2,700 scoop pensions worth at least £37,000 a year and more than 35,000 get at least £17,000 a year, according to official figures. Which figures are too large?

The real issue is much broader, we need decent pensions for all and have to work out to fund them. We need a government bold enough to tackle this and face the problems that we all need to save more, invest more, get more people into employment and share the work and rewards more fairly.

With limited funds we could prioritise pensions before Trident replacement, then we would be well on the way. If we also dropped plans for nuclear power stations with their multibillion pound decommissioning costs, which will ultimately be met by the tax payer, then the money needed would be available. It’s all about choices.

DOROTHY FORSYTH

Meads Road