Chandler pays off Public Safety Pension debt

July 25, 2023
Fire Engine

CHANDLER, Ariz. – The City of Chandler issued a $73 million payment to the Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS) this month, marking the final payment of its unfunded pension obligation. Chandler has become the largest Arizona city to pay off this debt.

“We’ve made concerted efforts over several years to pay off our largest unfunded debt,” said Chandler Mayor Kevin Hartke. “Doing so has stabilized the pension system that is a critical benefit for first responders who have served our community and generated ongoing savings that we can apply toward needs in other areas.”

The Chandler City Council has previously allocated $125.2 million in additional one-time payments during the past 7 years to pay down this unfunded obligation.

PSPRS has made various administrative and staffing changes, adopted more conservative actuarial assumptions, altered the actuarial anticipated rate of return and has thus required higher ongoing payroll contributions to stabilize the managed pension system after years of investment underperformance and actuarial flaws that contributed to the unfunded pension liability.