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Senate breaks with House on pensions

by John Kennedy | April 6th, 2011

Dueling budget plans were poised for votes Thursday in the House and Senate – a milestone for lawmakers still far from consensus and struggling to close an almost $3.8 billion budget shortfall.

But during almost daylong debate Wednesday, the Senate made the most striking move – breaking with the House on making 655,000 teachers, police, firefighters and other government workers contribute 3 percent of their pay to the state’s retirement plan.

Instead, senators rolled out an alternate approach, requiring 2 percent to 6 percent contributions. Supporters said the plan would be easier on lower-income employees – the bulk of those enrolled in the Florida Retirement System.

“Our intention is not to run (costs) up higher than it has to be,” said Senate Budget Chief J.D. Alexander, R-Lake Wales.

Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, is expected Thursday to revive his call for making elected officials pay 7 percent into the retirement system.

 The move drew lengthy debate Wednesday – but a vote was postponed, when Sens. Evelyn Lynn, R-Ormond Beach, and Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, argued against the higher rate.

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6 Responses to “Senate breaks with House on pensions”

  1. Educator Says:

    Let’s watch the Floriduh government implode. Thank you Fascist Scott!

    Obama 2012!!!

  2. greg Says:

    7% Pension funding for elected officials!

    Fellow Repubs will run Don Gaetz out of town for proposing they put their money where their mouths are.

  3. NOBAMA Says:

    Obama NOT in 2012.
    3 WARS-Record High Deficit-Record High Unemployment… obama SUCKS…

    FL. FRS employees can afford to pay 3% toward the best pension system in the southeast United States. That or reduce mulitiplier from 3% to 2% for police & fire. And, increase teachers from 1.6% to 2% and all contribute at 3% salary.

  4. deb Says:

    1. Accountant IV, 12 years of service $36,744.
    2. Tax Specialist II, 35 years of service $40,255.
    3. Correctional Officer, 19 years of service $38,827.
    4. Vocational Rehab, 20 years of service $27,943.
    5. Senior Rehabilitation, 30 years of service $34,087.

    Here are your Florida State Employees Wages/Years of service from “Florida Has a Right To Know”. These “poverty wages” haven’t been increased in five years, and now face a pay-cut to contribute to their pensions?

  5. deb Says:

    Florida State Employees wages rank “dead last” in a state by state, nationwide comparison.

    If they must contribute to their pensions “like the private sector”, we must raise their wages to that of the private sector.

    If they must contribute to their pensions “like other states”, we must first raise their wages to that of other states.

    Fair is fair. Florida lawmakers are exploiting state workers !

  6. deb Says:

    The “budget cuts” the Florida Republican/Teaparty insist are “unavoidable” is an outright lie. This state is entitled to BILLIONS of dollars for damages, lost revenue, taxes from BP as a result of the oil spill.Rick Scott is refusing to collect it on behalf of Florida, choosing to leave the billions in the pocket of BP to collect as future campaign contributions. The money is there, the state is entitled to it. If this money was collected, the “budget crisis” is resolved…something Rick Scott doesn’t want.

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