Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Pensions! As we do most weeks, we have gathered the best stories about pensions and retirement security from the previous week. This is the news you need to know in the fight for a secure retirement.
Here are this week’s top stories:
- Fix PERA, but not on backs of retirees by Kerrie Dallman: the president of the Colorado Education Association warns about the problems with Senate Bill 200, a pension bill moving through the Colorado legislature that would make harmful and unnecessary changes. SB 200 would put the burden on the backs on current public employees and retirees while threatening future retirement security by expanding the defined contribution plan.
- Kentucky teachers fill Capitol with all-day display of outrage over pensions, school funding by Thomas Novelly, Mandy McLaren, and Morgan Watkins: following the surprise passage of the pension-gutting sewage legislation last week, schools across Kentucky closed on Monday as teachers flooded the Capitol to protest the deceitful actions of the state legislature. Protests have continued throughout the week as teachers demand better school funding and continue to express their outrage at the attack on their pensions.
- Teachers have had it. Why they’re revolting against low pay and inadequate school funding by Valerie Strauss: following the successful strike of teachers in West Virginia, teachers from Kentucky to Oklahoma to Arizona are walking out or threatening to strike over inadequate pay, threats to their pensions, and cuts to education funding. After years of often harsh cuts to education funding and attacks on the teaching profession, teachers have had enough and are starting to fight back and demand better for their students.
- Kentucky tax reform bill is a break for the rich but a hike for everybody else, study says by Tom Loftus: Republican legislators in Kentucky this week hurriedly passed a tax cut bill just days after passing harsh pension-cutting legislation that will weaken retirement security for Kentucky’s public employees. As we’ve reported before, Kentucky has a porous tax code that gives away significantly more each year to profitable corporations and the wealthy than the state pays in pension costs. These bills passed just days apart only further exacerbate this difference.
- Matt Bevin brutally dismissed by Kentucky teacher with sign: ‘Bevin Listens to Nickelback’ by Jeffrey Lee Puckett: “A Kentucky teacher delivered the sickest possible burn to Gov. Matt Bevin during protests against a controversial pension bill and Bevin’s general insistence that public education is a waste of resources. A simple cardboard sign proudly held aloft by an unknown hero summed up the Bevin era in four words:
‘Bevin Listens to Nickelback.’
Boom. There is no coming back from that one.”
Be sure to check back next week for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!