Bid to overhaul pension sparks mixed reactions
Published at 16:34, Wednesday, 16 January 2013
PLANS to change the state pension to a flat-rate system have been met by mixed reactions in Barrow.
The government proposes to overhaul the state pension by introducing a single-tier system.
It plans to provide a universal payment of £144 a week – a figure calculated at today’s prices – for people who reach pensionable age after 2017 and have 35 years of National Insurance contributions.
People due to receive a state pension before April 2017 will not be affected.
Margie Arts, Barrow and Furness Pensioners’ Association secretary, described the reforms as “farcical”.
She said: “People are earning wages and paying National Insurance in anticipation of getting a pension and every time they’re moving the goalposts.
“When I was young, you could’ve expected that if you were industrious and paid into a company pension and got an amount of money together, you could retire at 55 – and now you’re 65.
“Ten more years, it’s just wrong.
“This is a personal opinion, but I think most of the pensioners I know would agree, to have a universal pension amount is a good idea, but the universal payment should be based on the decency threshold that the government have assessed at being £300 a week.”
The most somebody can presently get in a standard state pension is £107.45 a week.
But some also get the State Second Pension, or Serps – the earnings-related additional pension.
There is also the Pension Credit, with those who qualify guaranteed at least £142.70 a week for a single person and £217.90 for couples.
Rob Cairns, Barrow and District Credit Union chairman, said the reforms would make the system simpler, but added: “From the point of view of the credit union, this isn’t going to change the world and savings in places like credit unions are going to be more and more important to people during retirement. But another downside is if people haven’t paid National Insurance contributions for at least 10 years, they get nothing.
“Some people certainly aren’t going to benefit because the pensions are going to be paid from a smaller share of National Insurance, so hence you still you need to save and hopefully people will do it in Barrow Credit Union.”
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
- Cumbria businessman lauded nationally as visionary
- Keep ownership until cash is in the bank
- Never underestimate the importance of lists
- Eight global markets already lined up for Lakes Gin
- Lakeland kitchenware predicting rapid growth
- Nuclear skills time bomb can be halted
- Sellafield ploughs £200k into local projects
- Should firms support Labour's minimum wage plans?
- Cumbrian businesses refute office space claims
- New Balance Cumbria is 'factory of the future'
- The £7 million semi-detached home in Carlisle?
- Carlisle Living Awards: winners revealed
- Movers and shakers in the Cumbrian business world
- Chef to hold masterclasses for food business start-ups
- Foreign visitors to Lake District on the rise
- Cumbrian village digs its own broadband network
- Story Homes submits plan for 190 houses in north Carlisle (46 comments)
- Record occupancy for Cumbria hotel
BBC News business headlines
- The sick playground of sadistic care home staff
- Cumbrian hospital matron who abused her position apologises
- Furness family of Jay James rally behind X Factor star ahead of live show
- Prime Minister urged to help secure future of Cumbrian steel plant
- Lurcher stolen from Cumbrian allotments
- Man became depressed after being falsely accused of rape, inquest told
- Cumbria police probe van and cycle crash
- Watchdog warns South West Cumbria residents of doorstep fish sellers
- Man suffers facial injuries in Barrow Park assault
- One of two missing monkeys from Cumbria zoo found (7 comments)