So here is State General Treasurer Gina Raimondo’s response to criticism of her state pension investment strategy: Send campaign cash!
In an e-mail message, Raimondo denounces critics of her pension investments as partisans. ``You might haved seen the latest round of attacks against me by a `pension expert’ who was paid tens of thousands of dollars by a Rhode Island special interest group to criticize our work stabilizing our state’s failing pension system. Make no mistake: These attacks were personal, recycled an an attempt to take down pension reform.’’
The disputes over State General Treasurer Gina Raimondo’s pension investment strategy rages on. The latest salvo comes from Gretchen Morgenson, the respected financial columnist for the New York Times.
Rhode Island’s pension fund earned a return on its investment of a little more than 11 percent for the fiscal year that ended June 30th. But state Treasurer Gina Raimondo is sounding a warning about the future of the state’s pension plan.
The 11.1 percent earned by the state pension fund is a big improvement over the 1.4 percent return a year earlier. Still, Rhode Island fared a bit worse than the 12.5 percent earned by the country’s largest public employee pension system, CALPERS, over the same period.
In politics, as in pensions, assets can turn into liabilities. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay wonders if an advocacy group for pension overhaul that doesn’t need to disclose its members has become state Treasurer Gina Raimondo’s Achilles heel.