I was very disappointed in the response that Senator Claitor’s bill (SB 272) received when it was brought before your body. We all know that the retirement systems in the state government have been bloated and unsustainable for years and are completely out of line with those in the private sector. It has now became clear that action must be taken and our legislators seem to believe that the only problems lie with working people earning less in a year than most executive level politicians will draw in retirement.
All state retirement systems should be patterned after Social Security. That is, no early retirement before age 62 and then with a reduced rate, full retirement only at age 67 and no one would be able to draw a retirement and a state pay check simultaneously. Those who retire or are voted out of office should be barred from being hired by their friends in government for the apparent reason of fattening their pensions, think Ellington, think Hebert. A few of the other abuses would include: Donelon drawing $ retirement while drawing $123000 in salary $93000: Landrieu, $80000 retirement, $225000 salary: Alario, $drawing 2 retirements, $37000 & $31000 while he pulls down his $37000 Legislative salary, Burl Cane, $35000 pension and $175 salary. The DROP programs are a complete rip off of tax payer money. It should be stopped but that is another subject for another time.
I do not oppose a fair and reasonable pension for all state employees and elected and non-elected officials. The key word is reasonable. Too many officials are gaming the system at the expense of tax payers. The state cannot afford this. You are making an attempt to reform the system for state workers. Be a leader, reform the abuses in the entire system.Louisianacannot afford this abuse. When the systems go bankrupt you will impose more tax on the people either directly or indirectly through cuts to needed services, favorites seem to be health care and education, in order to maintain the perks. In the private sector if a retirement program fails it is just tough luck. The Federal Government will take it over and pay out maybe 40% of one’s previous benefit.
To the Honorable Senator Dan Claitor, I want to thank you for your attempt at reform . Please reintroduce legislation similar to SB 272. There are enough concerned tax payers who will exert pressure for change if we knew that someone was looking out for our well being.