Pew Charitable Trusts has cited the Wisconsin Retirement System as one of three public employee pension plans that has maintained high funded ratios at predictable costs over the past 20 years. The other two plans are Tennessee and South Dakota.
The WRS has “exemplary characteristics,” Pew noted in Wisconsin Pension Official Details State’s Approach to Weathering Market Volatility, “including a path to retirement security for all workers within clearly defined cost targets, a plan for managing risk, and a commitment to ensuring that policies are transparent and clearly communicated to stakeholders.”
Pew conducted a wide-ranging Q&A-style interview with Department of Employee Trust Funds Secretary John Voelker about the myriad of factors that contribute to the long-term success of the WRS.
Topics of discussion include:
- an overview of fundamental WRS design
- WRS cost and retirement security goals
- a strong funding policy with shared risk features
- ETF’s effective working relationship with the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, which manages the assets of the WRS
- how the WRS mitigates the effects of inflation on retirees
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