Members of the Minneapolis police pension fund voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to merge with a state pension fund. The final tally was 722-22. Earlier this week, members of the Minneapolis firefighters pension fund also voted to merge.
City officials say merging the two local funds with a state pension fund will save Minneapolis property tax payers millions of dollars a year. Police pension fund chairman Larry Ward, a retired Minneapolis officer, says members are satisfied with the outcome.
"The citizens of Minneapolis certainly deserve any break we can give them," said Ward. "The tax structure over the past few years has been horrendous, and I think they've voiced an opinion on that and we're glad and happy that this is working out."
During the last legislative session, lawmakers passed a measure allowing the merger. Minneapolis officials estimate property tax payers this year will contribute more than $15 million to the two funds.
Mayor R.T. Rybak was counting on savings from the merger when he proposed a 2012 budget with no increase in the city's property tax levy.