Select Group of Federal Retirees Collect Six-Figure Pensions

More than 21,000 retired federal workers receive lifetime government pensions of $100,000 or more per year, a USA TODAY/Gannett analysis finds.

Of these, nearly 2,000 have federal pensions that pay $125,000 or more annually, and 151 take home $150,000 or more. Six federal retirees get more than $200,000 a year.

Some 1.2 percent of federal retirees collect six-figure pensions. By comparison, 0.1 percent of military retirees collect as much.

The New York State and Local Retirement System pays 0.2 percent of its retirees pensions of $100,000 or more. The New Jersey retirement system pays 0.4 percent of retirees that much. Comparable private figures aren’t available.

The six-figure pensions spread across a broad swath of the federal workforce: doctors, budget analysts, accountants, public relations specialists and human resource managers. Most do not get Social Security benefits.

Retired law enforcement is the most common profession receiving $100,000-plus pensions, including 326 Drug Enforcement Administration agents, 237 IRS investigators and 186 FBI agents.

The Postal Service has 714 retired workers getting six-figure retirements. The Social Security Administration has 444. A retired Smithsonian zoologist has a $162,000 annual lifetime pension.

The six $200,000-plus pensions include a doctor, a dentist and a credit union regulator, plus three retirees whose occupations weren’t listed.

Pensions are a growing federal budget burden, rising twice as fast as inflation over the last decade. Pension payments cost $70 billion last year, plus $13 billion for retiree health care. Taxpayers face a $2 trillion unfunded liability — the amount needed to cover future benefits — for these programs, according to the government’s audited financial statement.

Full article: http://www.cnbc.com/id/48678353



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