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Pension fund moves toward health care cuts for Ohio cops, firefighters

Ohio Police & Fire Pension Fund this month is taking another step toward revamping its health care benefits for retired cops and firefighters.

OP&F trustees will hear pitches from three consultants vying for a contract to advise the system on how to restructure the health care plans. The consultants will make present to the board Sept. 26 and 27.

Related: Retiree health care cuts looming for cops and firefighters in Ohio

The pension fund wants to switch to stipends for retirees to buy health care by Jan. 1, 2019. Currently, retirees are offered pension fund-sponsored health care plans that cover 75 percent of the premium costs for retirees and 25 percent of the cost for their spouses. The amount of the stipends has yet to be decided.

If OP&F doesn’t make changes, the money available for health care benefits will dry up within nine years.

Rising costs, members living longer and a volatile stock market have put pressure on Ohio’s five public pension systems.

Related: Ohio’s public pension systems shift more health care costs to retirees

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