Increase in Derby's City Council's pension 'black hole'

The pension "black hole" at Derby City Council has increased by nearly 50% in the past year, figures have revealed.

The council had a gap of £200m to fill a year ago, but now it is nearly £300m, according to financial statements.

Councillor in charge of resources, Sean Marshall, said: "There is not a pension fund in the country at the minute that is not in deficit."

The council's accounts for 2009-2010 also show the authority made an overall loss of nearly £30m last year.

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Mr Marshall said: "If everybody wanted their pensions right now - there is quite a black hole. But if we do have problems - we have contingency plans to deal with it."

The pension fund's investments have gone up in value over the last year, but the amount they owe staff in the future has shot up even faster.

The council said a full review of the pension fund would be carried out later this year and it has made contingencies for any shortfall.

Derby City Council's pension fund - part of a fund run by Derbyshire County Council - has a liability of £292m - up from £200m last year.

The council said: "A full actuarial review will be undertaken in October to assess the full status of assets and liabilities.

"This review will inform us if we have any shortfalls to be addressed. The council's budget plan includes a £1.8m contingency against any rises."

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