The 2008 U.S. federal poverty levels are $10,400 a year for a single person household and $14,000 a year for a two-person household.
Officials with the Teachers’ Retirement System of Louisiana, called TRSL, and Louisiana State Employees’ Retirement System, called LASERS, said they do not know how many retirees survive on pensions alone.
Louisiana is one of seven states where state employees do not typically participate in Social Security. If employees receive Social Security benefits from other jobs or spousal employment, the benefits could be reduced because of federal restrictions.
LASERS Executive Director Cindy Rougeou said she believes attempts to repeal the federal restrictions — called the Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset — stall in the U.S. Congress because of an estimated $80 billion price tag.
“But, as you know, that’s like a drop in the bucket,” Rougeou said. “It’s just negatively impacting so many state retirees and so unfairly.”
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
WEP and GPO keep some Louisiana retiree pensions below poverty level
Up to 30 percent of retirees from the two largest State Employee Retirement Systems would be living under the federal poverty line if relying solely on pension benefits.