All FRS Legislation put on HOLD?

Last week Senator Mike Bennett, Chair of the Senate Community Affairs Committee (and sponsor of SB 1902.) mentioned in committee “that all of the retirement bills will be rolled into a study for over the summer.” This would … tentatively put the retirement benefits bills on hold, most likely until the next session of the Florida legislature

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Last week Senator Mike Bennett, Chair of the Senate Community Affairs Committee (and sponsor of SB 1902.) mentioned in committee “that all of the retirement bills will be rolled into a study for over the summer.”  This would include the most adverse, HB 1319 and HB 1543, in addition to SB 1902 and SB 2022, and tentatively put the retirement benefits bills on hold, most likely until the next session of the Florida legislature. We will try to get verification on this as soon as possible.

It is my understanding the legislators were so overwhelmed with calls from YOU, and there was such an outpouring of concern, that the decision was made to table all bills relating to retirement benefits until after a special study could be done over the summer to determine the best route to take.  This is not a victory! It most likely means the committee will meet a consensus of what changes to make to your benefits, and it will then be easier to pass the bills in the next session of the legislature.

I would again remind everyone of the 125 page report from the Florida Tax Watch group.  You may recall this group consisted of many powerful members of the Florida Legislature (Previous discussion at FRSOptions).  It would be a mistake to believe that the summer study will not propose cuts to your benefits, and it would not be coincidental if the final version corresponds to the Tax Watch proposal.

As of this time, HB 5701 , which will cut the Health Insurance Subsidy after December 31 of this year, has passed both the house and the senate, and is now in the process of the two groups negotiating the final version.  It looks like you will lose that benefit!

While just prolonging the process, the summer respite does give you, Florida Retirement System participants, some breathing room to make some decisions in regard to your future (Take Control of your Retirement ).  Now is the time to meet with knowledgeable and trusted advisors about possible actions you can take.  It also provides more time to communicate your concerns to your representatives’ and senators.  It would be wise to keep a close eye on Tallahassee and keep those phones ringing!  Your calls are having and affect.  Keep up the good work!

  • Gary Leise

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Please be informed that the following House and Senate Bill’s do NOT meet with my approval. ( HB 5701, HB 1319, HB 1543 and SB 1902). As my representative in government, I want a NO vote on these Bills and any like them, now and in the future.

    It is time for you to stand up and be a true Statesperson and honor the commitments and obligations made in the past to the men and women in government service. These people have already made many sacrifices. They have made long range plans and commitments of their own based on the promises made and current Florida Statutes regarding this matter. For you to change the rules midstream and take away the EARNED retirement benefits is unconscionable and without honor.

    It is time for you as my representative to earn your pay, it’s time for you to think outside the box and find new and innovative ways to pay the States bills. To try to balance the budget on the backs of its workers, I find to be unacceptable. Please return to the work table, roll up your sleeves and try again. I will be following the way you vote on these Bills very closely, as this and how well you come up with new ideas will influence how “I” choose to Vote in the next election.

    Sincerely

  • 1disappointedguy

    I am completely opposed to the proposed legislation that, if passed into law, would dramatically impact and reduce promised retirement benefits to Florida's FRS retirees.

    I have one suggestion for a change that I would like to propose for consideration by our legislators. Several years ago, legislation was passed to reduce an employees years become vested in the FRS from 10 years to six years. That change was very well received by many, as it enabled participants to become eligible for retirement benefits with fewer years of service in the system.

    I truly don't like the notion of reducing anyone's retirement expectations, but isn't it interesting that none of our legislators who are term-limited at eight years have proposed to revert the years to vest back to ten years, thereby cutting themselves out of the retirement benefits gift that they gave to themselves when they changed the vesting requirement?

    If they are really serious about making money saving changes, they shouldn't excuse themselves from potential cuts.

  • http://www.floridaretirementsystem.info Mark Davy

    If the Legislators don't share in the benefits, will they fight to protect them?
     Mark A. Davy

    SouthBay Investment Group, llc
    665 S. Orange Avenue, Suite 4
    Sarasota, Florida  34236

    941-951-1977
    941-952-1937 (fax)

    ________________________________

  • Frank E.Cline,Sr.

    Dear Sir/Madam: Please vote non the following,HB5701,HB1319,HB1543, and SB1902. It is un-thinkable that this type of legislation was submitted at all!

  • http://www.floridaretirementsystem.info Mark Davy

    Approved

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  • Fluitt4

    It is a shame that honest folk work years on a job paying taxes and yet has to pay taxes on their benefits , which in most cases have to be supplemented. The legislative know they have higer benefit packages than regular working poor folk who yet retire and still needs a part-time job. We need to delete income taxes from benefits after a certain age say,65 yrs. old

  • Frankecline

    This change appears only to give theGovernor more of our retirements benifits to give the mony to his and certain legislators money to fund THERIR pt projects or promises. There would ample money in the retirement coffers if it hadn’t been raided before. This may in some way to force retirees into Obama Care!!!

  • KathyH

    I have worked under the FRS for over 25 years now. I have had no raise for 6 years but increased work, insurance premiums have gone up, we have had furloughs, they have taken away my sick leave so I have lost 5k of payout on that for being a dependable employee and now they want more. Take take take and there’s nothing I can do about it. I can’t take back all the service I have given but they can take from me. Go ahead do away with the drop program save money that way, grandfather some in or give those close to retirement somekind of payout either way that will save money but enough has been taken away.