In a unanimous 9-0 decision, the Supreme Court of Canada has dismissed an appeal from public service unions representing hundreds of thousands of employees, who wanted the government to pay back billions into the pension funds of federal public servants, Mounties and soldiers.
The ruling does not change the pension benefit plans of members, and was never going to.
But the unions wanted to federal government to pay back into their members' funds $28 billion in surplus contributions -- money the government used to pay down its deficit between 2001 and 2004.
The article reminds us that the Harper government recently made changes to these pensions because as they were, they were unsustainable. But it stands to reason that if you skim off the surpluses then there's nothing there for a rainy day. Now how long before some think tanker comes along to explain patiently that the pensions for the people currently in those jobs represent an unfunded liability that we can't afford?
It's the Age of Austerity and we have to settle for less. 'Cos when there's more, they make it disappear.