Monday, June 29, 2009

Bill will restructure pension debt

A bill that cleared the Louisiana Legislature last week is expected to lower what state officials call the “largest direct debt of any state entity.”

Senate Bill 296, which has been sent to the governor for his signature into law, is aimed at making those future payments less dramatic and to save taxpayers about $557 million, said state Sen. Butch Gautreaux, the Morgan City Democrat who chairs the Senate Retirement Committee.

The legislation basically would refinance some of the debt after making a large extra payment and create a new payment structure.

The state employees and teachers retirement systems have a combined debt of about $11 billion.

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