Friday, June 19, 2009

Legislative Update-By Robyn Ekings

With the Louisiana Legislature scheduled to reconvene June 21st, here’s the latest on the measures LASERS is monitoring:

HB 96 by Slidell Rep. Kevin Pearson has been sent to the governor for his consideration. It provides for a guaranteed COLA for members of state and statewide retirement systems with an actuarial reduction of benefits.

HB 513 by Rep. Dee Richard has passed the House and Senate Retirement Committee..and awaits debate in the full Senate. It would revive the 10@50 Early Retirement Option for LASERS members. An employee taking this option would not be eligible for reemployment, and positions vacated would be abolished pending further review.

HB 586 by Rep. Jean Doerge of Minden is also in the governor’s hands. It reaches out to certain LASERS and TRSL retirees, beneficiaries, and survivors with a benefit below $1200 a month. Other requirements include career service credit (without unused leave) of 30 or more years and a minimum age of 60.

HB 673 by Rep. Rogers Pope also made its way through the process and is awaiting action by Governor Jindal. It provides a mechanism for the state’s public colleges and universities to continue the employer and employee contributions for workers who has been furloughed for no more than 30 days a year. It would affect both LASERS and TRSL members.

SB 296 by Sen. Butch Gautreaux went through the Senate and House, and is set for final concurrence by the Senate. It restructures and extends the payment system for the debt of LASERS and TRSL and will also have an impact on future COLAs.

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