L.A. County Launches Fund for Retiree Health Costs
On Tuesday, Los Angeles County officials launched a new trust fund to help cover the cost of retiree health care benefits, although many details of how the fund will operate have yet to be resolved, the Los Angeles Times reports.
County officials are negotiating with the Service Employees International Union Local 721, which represents more than 50,000 county employees, to determine how often and how much the county will contribute to the fund. The county also plans to discuss strategies for reducing benefit costs with unions.
The new trust fund will be used to supplement the county's current pay-as-you-go strategy for retiree health care benefits. An actuarial report prepared last year projects that without such a trust fund, county obligations for retiree health care benefits would jump from about $400 million this year to $1 billion within 10 years.
The Los Angeles County Employee Retiree Association will manage the fund (Rosenblatt, Los Angeles Times, 10/17).