Retirement plan board approves 9 percent budget increase

The board overseeing the Thrift Savings Plan on Friday approved an $11.3 million increase to the federal retirement program's budget for fiscal 2012 after requiring the agency to keep spending flat the previous year.

During its monthly meeting, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board voted 2-1 in favor of a $143.1 million budget for next year, a 9 percent increase over fiscal 2011. Members in May considered an initial estimate of $147.2 million, later dropping the figure to $145.6 million. TSP Executive Director Greg Long called the final budget "prudent," noting that agency officials were responsive to the board's request to minimize proposed increases.

Significant costs for 2012 include the introduction of a Roth 401(k) plan, scheduled to launch early next year; a $3.5 million boost to update data and call centers; a $2.1 million jump in personnel costs with a planned staff restructuring; and a $3.4 million one-time expense associated with the agency's move to a new office. TSP also plans to hire seven additional employees, including acquisition, information technology and strategic planning staff.

Board members in recent months have expressed concern that TSP is not keeping costs under control. Former Board Chairman Andrew Saul, who abstained from the vote Friday, in past meetings has called such increases "unfair" to participants given the current fiscal climate.

"We're getting bigger and more complex in what we're doing," Long said, adding that despite the budget hike, participant costs will remain flat.

"That's the goal -- to provide more services to more people and keep the price per person the same," said board member Dana Bilyeu. "Quite frankly, it's ridiculously inexpensive compared to private sector-defined contribution plans."

Michael Kennedy, who last month was appointed board chairman, said that more strategic thinking will help the agency rein in spending and better plan for upcoming expenses. In addition to reviewing participation and performance statistics, future meetings will incorporate five-year strategic planning around communications, human capital needs and risk management, he said.

Long also presented a fiscal 2013 budget estimate of $145.8 million, which includes a slight increase in record-keeping and staffing costs. Board members won't consider the proposal until next year.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Federal IT Applications: Assessing Government's Core Drivers

    In order to better understand the current state of external and internal-facing agency workplace applications, Government Business Council (GBC) and Riverbed undertook an in-depth research study of federal employees. Overall, survey findings indicate that federal IT applications still face a gamut of challenges with regard to quality, reliability, and performance management.

    Download
  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

    Download
  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

    Download
  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

    Download
  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.