Monday, October 19, 2009

Committees study retirement "reform"

If you like the way the stock market tanked in the past couple of years, you'll love Speaker of the House Jim Tucker's ideas about changing the state's public employee retirement systems.

During the last legislative session, Tucker passed a resolution calling for a study of defined contribution retirement systems versus the defined benefit systems now enjoyed by state employees, including teachers and school support staff.

Under the current system, retirees get a pension based on their income and years of service. A defined contribution plan would put retirement income at the mercy of the stock market. Purveyors of 401k and other retirement plans strongly support the defined contribution option.

As this article by Advocate reporter Sarah Chacko notes, Tucker's plan would go into effect next year, and would affect newly hired teachers and other public employees.

Today, a joint meeting of the House and Senate Retirement Committees began the study required by Tucker's resolution.

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