Houston Pension Reform Sails Through Senate

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner
Francisco Montes
Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

Houston is one step closer to avoiding massive cuts to its police and fire departments after the Texas Senate passed the city's pension reform plan on Monday.

In a 25-5 vote, the measure passed easily, and now only must pass through the House before landing on Governor Greg Abbott's desk.

“Today, the Senate approved a locally developed and agreed-to solution that will place the City of Houston on a sustainable financial path,” Mayor Sylvester Turner said in a statement. “I’d like to thank Senator Joan Huffman, the bill’s author, and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick for their work in moving this forward.”

Turner, who served in the Texas House before becoming mayor, warned his old colleagues last week that he may have to lay off as many as 2,200 city employees — including police and firefighters — if the pension reform bill does not pass.

The plan, which was earlier okayed by Houston City Council, aims to reduce the city's $8.2 billion unfunded pension liability over 30 years and assume a more modest estimate for annual returns on the pension fund.

The House plans to vote on its version of the Houston pension plan on Saturday, where Turner said he expects it to pass.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.