The Swiss canton of Berne has conceded it owes the BPK and the BLVK – its public pension funds – CHF1.1bn (€900m), although plan sponsors and members will need to account for the remaining CHF1.7bn funding shortfall.The canton estimated that, for the CHF10.5bn Bernische Pensionskasse (BPK), the remaining shortfall will be CHF923m, while the shortfall for the CHF5.9bn Bernische Lehrerversicherungskasse (BLVK) for teachers in the canton stands at CHF776m.According to Swiss law for cantonal pension funds passed in 2013, public authorities must decide whether to fund their pension plans fully or stick with a state guarantee.For the Berne pension funds, the target to achieve full funding was set for 20 years from now. To fill the funding gap, the BPK – which is 83.4% funded – has set additional recovery contributions of 2.3% on top of regular contributions to the fund.At the BLVK, 81% funded, the rate was set at 4.25%.The canton and various cantonal authorities will be responsible for 60% of the cost of the recovery measures, while employees will be responsible for the remainder.In 2013, the BPK managed to push its funding level up from 78.8% with a 9.3% return.At the BLVK, a 6.3% return also improved funding, which had stood at a similar level to that of the BPK at year-end 2012.Both funds will be switched from defined benefit to defined contribution plans.This decision had been postponed three years ago, as the canton was still undecided on how to run the fund in future.In May, the majority of the people of Berne agreed to the key changes set down in the new legal framework for these changes, which will take effect from 1 January 2015.
After a weekend in the Lone Star State, the Women of Troy squared off against two more out-of-state opponents, No. 18 UNC Greensboro and Purdue, at the Under Armour Invitational in Fullerton, Calif.In their first game against a ranked opponent this year, the Women of Troy (1-1-2) played to a scoreless tie against UNC Greensboro (3-0-1).“We weren’t worried about their ranking and we don’t worry about those types of things,” associate head coach Harold Warren said. “I think we did well enough to win the game, but we overcame a lot of things. It’s early in the season, so we’ll be fine.”For most of the game, the Women of Troy controlled possession, but Greensboro goalkeeper Kelsey Kearney made a few of key saves that denied them from taking the lead.The teams played two scoreless overtimes, and though the Women of Troy had three opportunities to score in the second frame, they couldn’t find the back of the net.“We came out a little slow, but we started to pick it up a bit,” Warren said. “We created plenty of opportunities to win the game, but we just got to work on finishing.”Freshman goalkeeper Shelby Church recorded her second shutout of the season, while the backline for the Women of Troy held the UNC Greensboro offense scoreless for the first time this year.In the second game of the tournament, the Women of Troy (2-1-2) scored early and never looked back as they notched a 1-0 victory over the Purdue Boilermakers (3-2-1).“It was a good team effort and we came out, defended hard, attacked hard and we converted on our chances that were necessary to put the game away,” senior defender Karter Haug said.It was Haug who set up the only goal of the game as she placed the ball off a free kick for senior forward Megan Ohai, who headed it over Purdue goalkeeper Carianne Betts for the score.The goal was the 15th of Ohai’s career, placing the forward on USC’s all-time top 10 scoring list.The Women of Troy had multiple opportunities to add to their lead as they kept the pressure on the Boilermaker defense all day long. Betts stayed busy in goal, stopping five shots on net that kept the Women of Troy stuck at a one-goal advantage.But, in the end, Ohai’s goal would be the difference in this game.Church recorded her third shutout of the season and again, the USC defense held strong in shutting down the Purdue offense.“We like to think of our defense as the entire team because we want to defend as an entire unit,” Ohai said. “Defensively, we have Haug in the back holding it down for us with [junior defender Claire Schloemer], and they’ve done a great job of leading us. As a team, we did a great job on the defensive end.”