HEADLINES : California
Gov. Jerry Brown, Democrats fail to reach pension reform deal
SACRAMENTO, -- The governor said Tuesday he could not reach a deal with Democratic leaders on sweeping public pension reform and suggested talks continue during a monthlong recess that begins at the end of the week.
Gov. Jerry Brown issued a comprehensive proposal last fall that focused on raising the retirement age to match Social Security and moving new workers to a hybrid system in which defined benefits are combined with a 401(k)-style plan widely used in the private sector. Democratic leaders did not send him their plan until last Sunday and have not made it public.
Lawmakers said they want to allow workers to retire before age 67 at reduced pension rates and they refused the governor's call for a defined contribution plan that places some of the risk on employees. Currently, taxpayers are on the hook for billions of dollars in pension and health care benefits promised to public workers when they retire.
"The governor could not agree to some of the changes in the pension counterproposal," Brown's spokesman Gil Duran said in a statement. "These complex issues cannot be resolved in two days and he has asked the Legislature to continue to work with him over the recess to resolve the substantial differences."