Changes to Oregon public pension benefits upheld

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Supreme Court has upheld the reductions in public employee pension benefits that state lawmakers passed last year  to help address the state’s pension funding deficit. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports that nine public employees filed suit last August seeking to overturn two benefit reductions the Legislature made: requiring employees to share a small portion of the cost of their pension benefits, and putting a $195,000 limit on the final salary used in some benefit calculations. Their lawyers argued the changes constituted an impairment of contract under the state and federal constitutions, a “taking without just compensation” and a breach of contract rights. In a unanimous decision, the court rejected those arguments Thursday.