4/20/10 Please read this article updated today. Immediate action is required.
Via TwigVids — April 03, 2010 — Message from a friend:
The Florida House of Representatives needed a ‘revote’ to pass House Bill 5701 (H.B.5701) yesterday evening . The Republican majority overcame opposition (56-63), with a 59 to 57 revote passage.This bill will affect any F.R.S. member planning to retire before the Medicare age of 65. It eliminates the $150.00 per month medical insurance subsidy. Every school employee retiring before age 65 will lose $1,800.00 per year, until age 65.
Thanks to those of you who sent me messages stating that HB19319 is dead. Senator JD Alexander, of Lake Wales, has another bill, SB 2022, which is still very much alive and will be coming up today in committee. His phone number is (850) 487-5044 This is as of 3/25/10 at 1:30 pm.
There is a bill (HB1319/SB 1902) moving in Tallahassee that will significantly change the Florida Retirement System if passed. Some highlights of HB 1319/SB 1902 include:
Retirement compensation will be computed based on the average salary over ALL years of service. The average of the “highest five years” rule will be repealed. There is no grandparenting clause, so this will apply to existing employees participating in the FRS system who continue to work after July 1, 2010.
All new hires as of July 1, 2011, and all with DROP participation dates beginning on or after July 1, 2011, would pay a 1% contribution of gross income into the FRS system.
Reduction in annual multiplier from 1.6% to 1.44% for regular class; reduced from 2% to 1.8% for senior management class; and reduced from 3% to 2.7% for special risk class (cops, firefighters, etc). There is no grandparenting clause, so this would apply going forward to existing employees participating in the FRS system who continue to work in qualified positions beyond the effective dates.
Normal retirement service years and DROP ages increased to 33 years/age 65 (currently: 30 years/age 62), and by +3 years for all special risk categories. There is no grandparenting clause, so this will apply to existing employees participating in the FRS system who continue to work in qualified positions beyond the effective dates. This would not impact those who enter DROP before the July 1, 2010, effective date.
Average full compensation would no longer include accumulated annual leave paid out of the end. Accumulated sick leave paid out at the end will also not be counted towards calculating FRS compensation benefits.
Maximum benefit reduced to 80% of average final compensation. Existing 90% cap would remain for FRS participating employees who vested (at least 6 years of qualified FRS service) before July 1, 2010.
HB 1319 (Rep Grady) can be viewed at:
The Senate companion bill SB 1902 (Sen Bennett) can be viewed here:
Also pending is HB 1543 (Rep Zapata) Highlights include:
Cut the maximum benefit to 70% of average final compensation.
Entirely eliminates the elected official, senior management, and special risk administrative support classes for FRS benefits. All in these categories would all remain in FRS, but would be transferred to the “regular class” category.
Eliminates the Senior Management Service Optional Annuity Program.
Retains the “highest five” rule and existing retirement ages/service years.
Makes significant changes in law to municipal pension plans for firefighters and police officers.
Effective July 1, 2010.
You can view HB 1543 here:
Finally, you can track all FRS-related legislation during the current 2010 Legislative Session here:
These are important issues impacting tens of thousands of hard-working people statewide. We need to closely monitor them as they move forward. Please let your legislators know your concerns about these proposed bills over the next two months of the 2010 Regular Session. If you don’t know who to contact visit VoteSmart.org and enter your zip code and you’ll get exactly what you need.
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