Monday, November 10, 2003
Romney Pension Bomb Stinks

One day after kicking off Beth Lindstrom’s probable state Treasurer’s campaign by appointing her to the state Lottery Commission (source: SHNS, 11/6/2003) Willard Mitt slammed the Treasurer’s pension investment strategy.

The Fraud Governor stated that early retirement incentives and poor investment returns had created a “pension bomb” that would affect ‘every aspect of the state budget.” (source: Boston Globe, 11/7/2003)

Except, presumably, taxes – but we digress.

Romney claimed the pension damage could have been minimized had the state invested more in fixed-income securities and less in volatile stocks. (Like AmPad and Stage Stores, upon which the Commonwealth lost millions, and which were both owned, in part, by Romney? (source: Boston Herald, 10/23/2002) But again, we digress.)

Last year, under state Treasurer Shannon O’Brien, the state pension fund held 59 percent of its monies in domestic and international equities, and 29 percent of its monies in fixed income vehicles. (source: Boston Globe, 8/14/2002)

This year, under state Treasurer Tim Cahill, the state pension fund held 58.9 percent of its monies in domestic and international equities, and 21 percent of its monies in fixed income vehicles. While the percentage of equity holdings is virtually identical, Cahill has moved some monies from fixed income to timber, real estate and other investments. (source: mapension.com)

Is this wrong? Romney claims Cahill should increase, not decrease his fixed income holdings.

So why hasn’t the Fraud Governor done anything about it?

Pension investments are controlled by the nine-member PRIM Board; three board members are gubernatorial appointments. Romney’s appointees include Alexander E. Aikens, III, a retired Fleet banker; Peter Schwarzenbach, a Staples-crony, and Paul Cesan, the Treasurer of the State Police Association (source: mapension.com; Boston Globe, 5/18/93, 9/5/2003)

All of his pension appointees have two-things in common.

(No, it’s not ‘donations.’ Cesan is the only appointee who had to pay Romney/Healey Inc. to play. In 2002/2003, Cesan and his hometown namesakes gave Team Reform $3,000. By the same token, banker Aikens contributed nothing, while Staples’ siring Schwarzenbach served over a piddling $200. (source: OCPF))

1) All of his appointees have been to at least one official pension board meeting.
2) None of his appointees have called for a reallocation of pension funds.

Why is that? We thought the Fraud Governor was interested in overseeing pension investment change.

Maybe he’s more interested in changing the pension investment overseer.


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