Something that should have happened decades ago, might happen soon.
State Senator Jack Brandenburg posted this on FB today.
Facebook has somehow supplanted blogging and other online information sources. I have a post upcoming for this. In the meantime, I’m passing this along as a public service.
Hundreds of teachers have been emailing and calling my office regarding Senate Bill 102, which changes the teacher retirement plan. It has become very obvious to me that they have been misinformed.
First and foremost, if you are a current or retired educator, your pension benefit will not change one bit. You will not lose one cent. Your pensions are guaranteed and protected by the Michigan State Constitution. Once again, current teacher’s and retiree’s pensions are protected, every single cent.
We must change the structure of the plan because the state and school districts are facing a $26.7 billion dollar unfunded liability in the current pension fund. The current pension is only 60% funded. Each year, $727 dollars per pupil is spent just to play catch-up. This is unacceptable if we do not take action. The crisis we exacerbate today, will short change students and teachers for generations.
What is new, is that every teacher that is hired after June 30th, 2017, will be placed in a 401(k) retirement plan. In short, the reporting unit (school district, community college, or university) would automatically contribute 4% of the employee’s pay into that employee’s defined contribution account. In addition, employees could contribute up to 3% of their pay into their defined contribution account.
If you will, please send this information to your friends on Facebook.
Truthfully, “60% funded” is likely generous.
But in the current system it will become worse. And if the thought of a repeat of last years bail out of the DPS doesn’t freak you out, you must not be paying taxes in any form.
While I don't disagree with the Senator, I do have a problem with the timing (and his not acknowledging the remaining $59-T in debt Michigan is on the hook for).
Along with teacher pensions, we're also seeing bills being brought up to make cities immune from lawsuits the next time that we get a major storm here in S.E. Michigan, businesses located outside of Detroit being made to collect Detroit income tax and an energy bill to (very potentially) increase the cost of electricity for Michigan ratepayers.
I've brought up repeatedly in the past that the republican party purportedly stood for personal & fiscal responsibility.
These bills should've been brought up way before the November Election if they so strongly believe in them.
"..These bills should've been brought up way before the November Election if they so strongly believe in them..."
I remember hearing that same lament 'screamed' exactly 4 years ago (during yet another corrupt lame duck session) when 10,000+ not only agreed with you...but Democrats/Republicans seeking to send a message to *all of us" when those "strongly believing" in their freedom to assemble and speak at our Capital were violently attacked with absolutely no consequences whatsoever.
Something tells me that Jason's upcoming post (or solution?) won't include any shared sacrifice on the part of current or retired teachers so that our grandchildren's future retirement and health care plans in the education field can at least 'somewhere' equal the Cadillac pension plans enjoyed by those not even working a full calendar year for decades on end.
Given that no group of (cough) 'professionals' will ever NEAR equal being so richly rewarded for achieving so little (even part time)...I can't imagine that many 'new' teachers are impressed that their (cough) 'mentors' are not only riding off with their retirements in hand but a profession that they often bragged about in shambles and certainly no help whatsoever fighting the wealthy, corporations, data mining, Common Core or for Michigan parents/children (period).
We have had 4 long years to warn any Michigan Republican of pulling the unprecedented stunts that they managed to previously *including* outright intimidation minus the threat of consequence.
Any 'outrage' today rings pretty hollow when that same political threat was never used even
ONCE .."especially" during the election cycles of either '14 or '16.
Our Capital lawn will (soon) be muddied once again by...who?...fighting (unopposed) for what?
...26,000+ teachers illegally walked off the job on December 11th, 2012 with nothing but 'talk' (despite this stunt being pulled many times previous) from Majority Republicans and a Republican Governor of *finally* doing anything about it.
Today, we have an entire 'conservative' Michigan grassroots movement refusing to tie yet another recent 'threat' of municipal employee health care benefit changes to pension obligation bond LAW recently (and very quietly thanks to Tea Partiers) poised to strangle any child living where an AA bond rating might be artificially created to crush their taxable futures even more.
Is there even ONE Michigan so-called conservative 'precinct delegate' in this state fighting to bring these issues and so many more (ESPECIALLY forcing Grand Traverse County Republican Millikenesque 'resolution' votes on Betsy DeVos and her sudden 'conversion' to fighting Common Core) before their local Republican Party during this lame duck?
Or will Democrats soon (gladly) get themselves muddied very soon on our Capital lawn...while Michigan grassroots conservatives dare not even declare that the emperor has no clothes?
...many of you (nastily) ask why your brothers in conservatism never became precinct delegates during the last 7 years???
...because any conservative with an ounce of common sense KNEW (which was *proven* in the lame duck of 2012) that when the time came to actually FIGHT for our children or the freedom to assemble/speak?
Not a single one would FIGHT where others were more than glad to suffer or (more importantly) have OUR backs on ANY battlefield if this meant shared sacrifice on the movement's part or platform.
Whether you agree with everything that they will do or say during this lame duck (I obviously don't)...you have to admire those willing to even so much as QUESTION the lame duck process all together let alone FIGHT in the bitter cold vs (similarly) doing whatever their local political party tells them to do (stay home and continue to be co-opted).
Our kid's history books will read no other way.
It is becoming pretty obvious (fast) why Michigan grassroots 'conservatives' supposedly fighting for a corruption free MiGOP for all these years?
...somehow 'missed' fighting the back door inclusion of statewide health benefits previously not mandated by law via every dirty trick in the book 'including' no-vote-of-the-people-requied pension obligation bonding..
Even if there is NOT a more shameful meeting conducted by Michigan Republicans than this Tuesday with absolutely no grassroots opposition?
This lame duck (not to mention the immediate aftermath) will make 2012 look like 'amateur hour' in terms of generational theft and grassroots apathy.
Read it and look your child in the eye afterwards (they dare you):
Standing Committee Meeting
Local Government, Rep. Lee Chatfield, Chair
DATE: Tuesday, December 6, 2016
TIME: 8:15 AM
PLACE: Room 308, House Office Building, Lansing, MI
HB 6074 (Rep. Cotter) Retirement; health benefits; local unit of government retirement act; create.
HB 6075 (Rep. Lauwers) Retirement; investments; reporting requirements of a local unit of government retirement system; expand.
HB 6076 (Rep. Poleski) Labor; public service labor disputes; retirement plans and health savings accounts; exclude from arbitration awards for public police and fire departments.
HB 6077 (Rep. Nesbitt) Labor; collective bargaining; certain retirement plan and retirement health care plan terms; make prohibited subjects of bargaining for local public employees.
HB 6078 (Rep. Nesbitt) Retirement; other; retirement health benefits for township employees subject to the local unit of government retirement act; provide for.
HB 6079 (Rep. Nesbitt) Retirement; fire and police; paying retiree health benefits from interest earned on a local unit of government retirement system subject to the local unit of government retirement act; provide for.
HB 6080 (Rep. Poleski) Retirement; fire and police; retirement health benefits subject to the local unit of government retirement act; provide for.
HB 6081 (Rep. Poleski) Retirement; county employees; retirement health benefits under a retirement system established by a county board of commissioners; make subject to the local unit of government retirement act.
HB 6082 (Rep. Pscholka) Retirement; other; retirement system established by a library board; make subject to the local unit of government retirement board.
HB 6083 (Rep. Pscholka) Retirement; municipal employees; retirement health benefits under a retirement system established by a city; make subject to the local unit of government retirement act.
HB 6084 (Rep. Somerville) Retirement; county employees; retirement health benefits for charter county employees subject to the local unit of government retirement act; provide for.
HB 6085 (Rep. Somerville) Retirement; municipal employees; retirement health benefits offered under the municipal employees retirement system; make subject to the local unit of government retirement act.
HB 6086 (Rep. Somerville) Retirement; county employees; retirement health benefits for optional unified form of county government; subject to the local unit of government retirement act.
OR ANY BUSINESS PROPERLY BEFORE THIS COMMITTEE
To view text of legislation go to:
Committee Clerk: Mary Lou Terrien
...one would believe (even 30 years ago) that a bill (sure to pass) described as;
"Authorize public/private partnerships with a broad scope including the theft of private property for the public good"
...yet it is pretty obvious that every single Gadsden in the state has either been 'bought off' or (more accurately) scared away by our mere grandchildren's future being the only prize for angry action (NOW) on our Capital lawn.
http://www.michiganvotes.org/2015-SB-627 (it is one thing to give away their future treasure to those who have intentionally stolen it *for decades* with no mathematical defense whatsoever...yet quite another to literally give away absolutely everything ELSE of value in their state and local communities *at the same time* with not so much as a 'peep' from anyone).
I hope that these kids not only old-fashionedly tar and feather every single one of us for the above but seek out those who have 'hurriedly' left this state already and go after them before they leave this earth as well.
Thankfully, God will not be pleased either.