Saturday, July 9, 2011

Is the Legislature Going to Eliminate Retirement Benefits for Former Lawmakers?

From State Representative John Bumstead's Newsletter:

Since session began this year, the Michigan Legislature has been committed to controlling state spending, increasing financial stability and making meaningful reforms to state government. The Legislature also has been answering the call to cut back on legislator compensation and other internal spending.

At the start of this year, legislators took a 10 percent pay cut and made further reductions to staff salaries and overall office expenses. Now, the Legislature is looking to address existing service entitlements granted to our elected body. House Bill 4087, which I voted in favor of, eliminates retirement healthcare for members elected on or after January 1, 2007, including my own benefits. Present and future members of the House and Senate will not receive any special benefits after their service.

While legislator compensation and benefits comprise a very small portion of the budget, it is important that state officials lead by example. As we address public employee compensation as a whole, we must also look to our own spending and bring legislative compensation in line with the private industry.

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