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Posted: Jun 20, 2010 8:12 PM
Source: Associated Press

  Rating: 5.0 (1 vote)

Topics: Joel Robideaux, legislature, Louisiana, capitol, teachers, retirement

A proposal to revamp the statewide retirement programs for new hires, particularly rewriting the
pension plans for new teachers, received final passage with a 93-3 House vote Sunday.

House Bill 1337 by Rep. Joel Robideaux, I-Lafayette, would restructure the programs for new employees who start in January, changing the employment years used to figure some retirement benefits, the eligibility standards and the amount some workers contribute to their pension plans.

Among the biggest changes would be the retirement package for new teachers, and the proposal drew opposition from teacher unions, who argued it would make it more difficult to recruit teachers.

Supporters of the measure said it would help the state save money, citing the current gap of more than $16 billion between the money the systems have and the money they'll need to cover the cost
of benefits. Robideaux said new workers will get a good pension plan from the state, just one less generous than many current workers receive.

Robideaux's bill would create two uniform retirement plans for new hires: those for police officers and others deemed to face hazardous duties and another for all others in the statewide retirement systems, including teachers.

The bill goes to the governor's desk.

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