Providence Proposes Change in Age Limit for Firemen’s Pensions
The council finance committee of Providence, R. I., has recommended to the city council a 10-year raise in the minimum age limit upon which a fireman can retire on pension, so that the present pension system can be continued without the city making annual appropriations of large sums of money to keep it financially sound. Under the present statute, members of the fire department can retire when 50 years old or at any time thereafter, and receive a pension provided they have served in the department 25 years. If the new plan is adopted, the minimum age of retirement will be raised to 60. At the present time there are 47 former members of the fire department retired on pension, and the presence of this number on the pension roll has served to so reduce the funds that the Fire Commission has asked the City Council for at least $6,000, in order that the system may be continued until the close of the current fiscal year, September 50. In addition to these 47 men, there are 30 more active members of the department, who are immediately eligible for pensions. In addition, this number will be increased to between 40 and 60 within a few months. If the age limit were raised from 50 to 60 years and the 25-year service period continued, the committee thinks, the pension fund could be kept in a safe condition by its regular receipts and a much smaller appropriation by the city. Legislative action will be necessary to bring about the proposed change, as the pension system is operated under a State law.