* Lessons on leadership miles above the planet
* Five questions for Barbara Gaddis
* President's Task Force on Efficiency reports progress
* List of system policies shrinking
* Regents recap
* Regents Merchant, Bishop honored
* Holiday spirit comes alive on Boulder stages
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  Manage your online identity with new tool
  Forum attendees gain ideas — and T-shirts
  Business School program recognized globally
  Award of $577,000 will aid study of tuberculosis treatment
  Hutchens to talk higher-ed fundraising on public TV
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PERA's plan of action raises doubts

PERA's hat-in-hand shtick is becoming tiresome. Yes, of course we need to fix the funding shortfall. And many, if not all, of PERA's recommendations might constitute a prudent course of action.

What troubles me is that the remedies are built largely on the backs of workers whose trust in the system continues to be shaken. When the next market calamity hits, will PERA simply ratchet up its income and reduce benefits by legislation? An average annual gain of 8 percent is entirely mysterious without more light shining on its investment assumptions, objectives and plan — clearly they missed their prior target by a mile.

PERA is starting to sound less like a retirement plan and more like a crapshoot. The market can always be the whipping boy while PERA workers endure the pain.

Barry Northrop
Accounting and Business Support
University of Colorado at Boulder

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