Texas court hands troubled Dallas pension system a legal win

DALLAS (AP) — The Texas Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System in a lawsuit brought by retirees angered by an interest-rate change that affected their retirement accounts.

The decision Friday by the state’s highest civil court is seen as a major legal victory for the system as it works to stabilize itself financially. Risky investment strategies and overly generous benefits had once led the pension to the brink of insolvency.

Retirees enrolled in the system had argued their constitutional rights were violated when in 2014 it reduced the interest rate on their Deferred Retirement Option Plan accounts.

They argued the interest rate was a protected benefit under the state Constitution, but the court disagreed.

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The Dallas Morning News reports that the rate was changed because it had far outpaced the fund’s dismal investment returns.