February 5, 2013

Gov. Corbett launches attack on school employee pensions

Gov. Tom Corbett introduced his state budget proposal on Tuesday, Feb. 5. For the third year in a row, he used it to attack public schools, threaten school employees, and shortchange public school students.

This year, he launched an attack on school employee pensions, outlining a series of unconstitutional changes that won't save taxpayer money, but will reduce pension benefits for current and future school employees.

PSEA is fighting to protect school employees' retirement security. Here’s what PSEA President Mike Crossey said about the governor’s plan.

“The governor’s pension plan just kicks the can down the road and adds to the debt that caused the problem in the first place. He is asking the General Assembly to enact unconstitutional changes to public employee pensions and use accounting gimmicks to defer the state’s pension debt. Just as bad, the governor would start a new 401(k)-style pension system that will actually cost taxpayers more money.”

Elements of Gov. Corbett's proposal:

  • Reduces the pension multiplier from 2.5 to 2.0 for current employees' future benefits
  • Changes the final average salary calculation from three years to five years
  • Enrolls new school employees into an inferior defined contribution plan, similar to a 401(k)
  • Caps pensions at the Social Security wage base
  • Further reduces monthly benefits for those who withdraw their pension contributions at retirement
  • No changes to benefits for retirees, but the proposal weakens the stability of the system

What does this mean?

The governor's proposal includes costly, unconstitutional changes that won't solve the pension crisis, but will reduce your pension benefits and weaken the retirement security that you earned and you paid for.

Keep the Promise
Email state legislators, urging them to reject the governor's agenda and prioritize school funding in this year's budget.





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