TRENTON – Citing his leadership as “the driving force” behind the successful effort to reform New Jersey’s pension systems with required payments, the leading international finance publication named Senate President Steve Sweeney one of the most influential and accomplished leaders in the field of retirement policy. Institutional Investor named Senator Sweeney the 12th most powerful player in its ranking of the 25 top figures in pension policies in the nation.
“There is almost no political issue that touches on the everyday essentials of American life more than retirement policy…and little is more important to Americans than maintaining a standard of living, and dignity, as they age, ” the publication said in listing the ‘Top Pension Power Players’ in the United States. “A major part of the solution is to build structures to ensure that, as citizens age and leave the workforce, they have been given the chance to acquire enough resources not to fall into poverty or lose their sense of self-worth. No group has more power to affect these structures than those who populate and influence government.”
The list includes influential members of Congress, United States cabinet officials, governors, prominent figures in business and finance, as well as top national union leaders.
“As the powerful president of the State Senate, Steve Sweeney, 57, is on the front line of the state’s bloody pension battles. He was the driving force behind a law passed in December that requires New Jersey to make quarterly rather than annual payments to its pension system,” the publication wrote in describing Senator Sweeney’s battle with Governor Christie and others to ensure the financial health of the state’s pension system. “Power, of course, is the ability to get things done. He will be an important power behind whoever inherits the throne from an embattled, term-limited Christie.”
“My fight has always been focused on guaranteeing the long-term financial strength of the pension funds that working families rely on to support themselves and their families in retirement,” said Senator Sweeney. “It is about financial security and human dignity for those who have worked hard all their lives. It is also about the health of state finances and taxpayers’ savings. We succeeded in enacting a law requiring quarterly pension payments in New Jersey but our work is not done. We must remain committed to sustaining the reforms and ensuring the required payments to the funds.”
Institutional Investor Power Ranking: