Pension Plans

Transparency

METRO has three pension plans which consist of two defined benefit pension plans and one defined contribution pension plan. The Non-Union Pension Plan is a noncontributory, single-employer, defined-benefit plan and was closed to new participants on October 1, 2007. The Transport Workers Union Pension Plan (Union Plan) is a contributory (effective October 1, 2018), single-employer, defined-benefit pension plan and was closed to new participants on October 1, 2012. Employees in the Union Plan contribute $3 each week through payroll deductions. Employees not eligible for the defined benefit pension plans are placed into the defined contribution plan.

METRO’s monthly contributions to the defined contribution plan equals 2 percent of the employees’ annual salary with METRO matching up to an additional 4 percent of the employee’s 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan contributions. METRO’s contributions are placed into a third-party trust account with employees’ vesting rates equally 40 percent after the second year with an additional 20 percent vesting occurring each of the next three years.

Contributions for all three plans are authorized annually by METRO’s Board of Directors during the annual budgeting process. METRO makes weekly contributions to the defined contribution plans and monthly contribution to the defined benefit plans. Funding policy for the defined benefit pension plans is to contribute each year the independently calculated, actuarially determined contribution in equal payments over a 12-month period using the following key assumptions.


  • Actuarial cost method – Entry age normal
  • Amortization method – Level percentage of payroll, closed
  • Asset valuation method – five-year smoothed market value
  • Inflation – 2.20%
  • Salary increases – 3.00% compensation increase
  • Actuarial assumed rate of return 6.25% is a net of an explicit assumption for expected administrative expense.
  • Mortality – The mortality assumption is updated annually and is currently using the Pub-2010 General Employee / Healthy Retiree Mortality Tables for M/F projected forward (fully generational) with MP-2019 with separate tables for contingent survivors and disabled participants. This reflects the most current mortality experience published by the Society of Actuaries for public plans. This assumption includes a margin for future improvements in longevity.

 

Public Pension Summary

The following table shows the financial information for the public pension summary and defined benefit plans as of December 31, 2019.

Public Pension Summary / Defined Benefit Plans
Name Union Non-Union
Funded ratio 69.99% 74.24%
Remaining Amortization period 23 year 23 year
Rate of return*    
1 Year 17.6% 16.7%
3 Year 8.6% 8.3%
5 Year 5.9% 5.5%
10 Year 7.9% 7.8%
Assumed rate of return 6.25% 6.25%
Actuarially Determined Contribution (ADC) amount $17,805,961 $12,628,619
Actual Employer Contribution amount $17,805,961 $12,647,252
Unfunded Actuarial Accrued Liability (UAAL) $158,635,309 $118,527,718
UAAL as a percent of covered payroll 175.1% 303.7%

 

Union Plan

Actuarial Value of Assets
Versus
Actuarial Accrued Liabilities (In Millions)
Fiscal Year Actuarial Value of Assets Actuarial Accrued Liabilities
2015 $238.70 $382.20
2016 $252.60 $387.30
2017 $267.40 $403.70
2018 $273.20 $436.90
2019 $284.20 $442.80

* The investment returns are calculated using the geometric method and are presented net of fees.
Download Excel file >>

Actuarially Determined Contribution Amount
Versus
Actual Total Contribution Amount
Fiscal Year 2016-2020 (In Thousands)
Fiscal Year Actuarially Determined Contribution Amount Actual Total Contribution Amount
2016 $16,565 $16,565
2017 $15,414 $15,414
2018 $15,631 $15,681
2019 $17,806 $17,806
2020 $17,079 $17,079

 

Actuarially Determined Contribution Rate
Versus
Actual Total Contribution Rate
Fiscal Year 2015-2019
Fiscal Year Actuarially Determined Contribution Rate Actual Total Contribution Rate
2015 16.5% 20.4%
2016 17.9% 17.9%
2017 16.4% 16.4%
2018 16.5% 16.6%
2019 19.7% 19.7%

 

Transport Workers Union Pension Plan, Local 260, AFL-CIO
For Five Years Ended December 31 for the following years:
Additions 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015
Employer contributions $17,805,961 $15,631,361 $15,413,823 $16,565,280 $19,062,423
Pick-up contributions $199,644 $49,546 - - -
Investment income / (loss)          
• Interest and dividends $2,175,848 $2,296,629 $1,671,687 $812,399 $1,380,500
• Net appreciation / (depreciation) on investments $43,137,051 -$20,344,177 $39,154,613 $17,297,528 -$8,338,049
Investment income / (loss) $45,312,899 -$18,047,548 $40,826,300 $18,109,927 -$6,957,549
Less investment expenses $817,445 $469,031 $456,670 $413,535 $852,342
Net investment income / (loss) $44,495,454 -$18,516,579 $40,369,630 $17,696,392 -$7,809,891
Total Additions $62,501,059 -$2,835,762 $55,783,453 $34,261,672 $11,252,532
Deductions 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015
Paid to Plan members and beneficiaries $21,934,190 $19,795,197 $18,799,540 $17,656,524 $16,567,409
Administrative services $337,196 $326,240 $314,986 $27,7833 $314,046
Total Deductions $22,271,386 $20,121,437 $19,114,526 $17,934,357 $16,881,455

Download Excel file >>


Non-Union Plan

Actuarial Value of Assets
Versus
Actuarial Accrued Liabilities (In Millions)
Fiscal Year Actuarial Value of Assets Actuarial Accrued Liabilities
2015 $152.60 $243.80
2016 $162.60 $254.90
2017 $171.60 $261.80
2018 $175.40 $284.10
2019 $181.40 $300

Download Excel file >>

Actuarially Determined Contribution Amount
Versus
Actual Total Contribution Amount
Fiscal Year 2016-2020 (In Thousands)
Fiscal Year Actuarially Determined Contribution Amount Actual Total Contribution Amount
2016 $11,181 $11,181
2017 $11,307 $11,307
2018 $11,061 $11,073
2019 $12,629 $12,647
2020 $14,218 $14,237

 

Actuarially Determined Contribution Rate
Versus
Actual Total Contribution Rate
Fiscal Year 2015-2019
Fiscal Year Actuarially Determined Contribution Rate Actual Total Contribution Rate
2015 18.9% 23.9%
2016 25.7% 25.7%
2017 27.1% 27.1%
2018 27.1% 27.2%
2019 32.4% 32.4%

 

Non-Union Pension Plan and Trust
For Five Years Ended December 31 for the following years:
Additions 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015
Employer contributions $12,647,252 $11,073,255 $11,181,136 $11,181,136 $11,248,671
Investment income          
• Interest and dividends $857,051 $665,810 $336,686 $513,330 $800,313
• Net appreciation / (depreciation) on investments $2,6730,303 -$11,885,822 $25,006,009 $9,784,962 -$6,025,771
Investment income / (loss) $27,587,354 -$11,220,012 $25,342,695 $10,298,292 -$5,225,458
Less investment expenses $538,659 $328,255 $312,845 $327,188 $665,458
Net investment income / (loss) $2,704,8695 -$11,548,267 $25,029,850 $9,971104 -$5,890,916
Total additions $3,969,5947 -$475,012 $36,337,125 $21,,152,240 $5,357,755
Deductions 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015
Paid to Plan members and beneficiaries $15,335,194 $12,735,227 $13,179,671 $10,374,582 $8,777,750
Administrative services $280,381 $241,979 $243,606 $226,067 $235,357
Total Deductions $15,615,575 $12,977,206 $13,42,3277 $10,600,649 $9,013,107

Download Excel file >>


Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts public pension search tool >>

 

Reports

METRO issues separate comprehensive annual financial report for each defined benefit pension plan and annual financial reports for the defined contribution, deferred compensation, and savings plan.

View reports here >>

Actuarial valuation reports and GASB 67 reports are prepared annually for both defined benefit pension plans by independent actuaries based on information provided by METRO.

View reports here >>

 

Accessible Formats

Information found on this website can be provided in an alternative format upon request. Please contact Customer Service at 713-635-4000 to speak to a representative or email the Accessibility Coordinator at accessibility@ridemetro.org. METRO will do its best to provide the requested alternative format within a reasonable time.