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California Supreme Court considers major pension dispute

California’s top court will consider Wednesday whether promised retirement benefits for public employees may be trimmed to reduce a shortfall of hundreds of billions of dollars in state and local pension systems.

The state high court is weighing whether to uphold a state law that ended an opportunity for state workers to pay a fee to tack on an extra five years to their work history.

No one disputes that pension benefits may be reduced for new hires. But for decades, California court rulings have said that public employers were barred from reducing benefits that were promised at the time a worker was hired.

The court hearing, which begins at 9 a.m., can be viewed here.

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RELATED: California promised public employees generous retirements. Will the courts give government a way out? »

maura.dolan@latimes.com

Twitter: @mauradolan


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