Magazine article Public Finance

Woolas Suggests LGPS Concessions Still Possible

Magazine article Public Finance

Woolas Suggests LGPS Concessions Still Possible

Article excerpt

In the dispute over the Local Government Pension Scheme the government has indicated that it may give trade unions concessions on the issue of protection.

This is in spite of the withdrawal of the 85-year rule, which was at the centre of last months strike action.

This rule allowed LGPS members whose age plus years in service reached 85 to retire at 60 without a reduction in their accrued benefits.

Unison called the removal of the rule in a statutory instrument on March 30 - three days after a national strike and at the beginning of Easter recess - 'provocative, premature and unnecessary'. The removal will come into full effect on October 1 - moving the retirement age for all members to 65.

The instrument provides protection from the rule change only to those who would have qualified under the 85-year rule before 2013.

But, in a Commons statement on March 30, local government minister Phil Woolas said: 'The government stands prepared to introduce further amendments before the summer recess to update the regulations in light of any agreed proposals which emerge from the talks between the trades unions and local government employers. …

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