Alberta's auditor general is warning the finance minister to keep a closer eye on public sector pension plans.

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Alberta auditor general Merwan Saher says a more formal monitoring process is needed in monitoring risk and performance in Alberta's public sector pension plans. (CBC)

In a report released this morning, Merwin Saher says the minister's office doesn't have a firm handle on how each plan is managing its risk.

The report comes as the provincial government braces for significant changes to its pension plans, such as eliminating early retirement and getting rid of the automatic cost of living allowance. 

If implemented, the changes will affect everyone who enters the plan after 2015.

Four different plans cover all provincial government and municipal employees in Alberta — 400,000 members currently enrolled. 

After a year long review, the Alberta government ended its consultation period into public sector pension plans and will announce changes to the plans this spring.  

Colleges rapped for money management

In the report, the auditor general also rapped the knuckles of some colleges for failing to manage their money and provide proper financial statements.

Saher says Olds College, Northern Lakes College and the Alberta College of Art and Design continue to struggle with money management.

He says Medicine Hat College and Portage College have made some improvements but still need to do better.
 

Corrections

  • A previous version of the story incorrectly credited Saher with recommending elimination of early retirement and getting rid of the automatic cost of living allowance. Rather, those are the province's proposed changes to the plans.
    Feb 13, 2014 1:47 PM MT
With files from The Canadian Press