Gabriel Roeder sued by Detroit Pensioners

This is a good article bringing into focus the struggles of Cities and governmental units who have unique decision making processes that influence the decisions of pension plans. This phrase is a quote from the article, “We just got blindsided,” it sounds like the actuaries didn’t do their job and omits the board that made decisions.

Whether the actuary did or didn’t do their job; the phrase implies the actuaries made decisions to bankrupt the retirement plan. In addition, it makes it sound like the retirement plan board had nothing to do with the decisions.

Gabriel Roeder’s job was to help Detroit’s pension trustees run a sound plan, she says, but instead the firm covered up a growing shortfall and encouraged the trustees to spend money they did not really have. Her complaint contends that the actuaries did this knowingly, “in concert with the plan trustees to further their self-interest.” The lawsuit seeks to have the pension plan made whole, in an amount to be determined at trial, and to have Gabriel Roeder enjoined “from perpetrating similar wrongs on others.” New York Times, , October 28, 2014; Link:

There is a difference between being “blind sided” and blaming someone else, as quoted, and accepting the decision made as city and other governmental units have done. There needs to be a recognition that the board made decisions they should not have.