Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Bad Bills on the Bayou - Retirement D-Day

BREAKING NEWS - 7:03 PM, 5/24/12
Hold your applause on Bobby Jindal's Cat Food Retirement Plan. It is not defeated yet. The story isn't completely right. I'm consulting with an expert. Developing. Sorry, I believed WAFB. They used the wrong version of the AP writer's story, and it's gone to conference, a delay. Keep fighting and call out those who voted for it.

Great News: Thursday, May 24, 2012, 6:24 PM: Bobby Jindal's "Cat Food" Retirement Plan (HB 61) failed in the House! Thank God.

See how they voted:

If this one can be defeated, so can the others. Keep fighting this long weekend.
Update: Thursday, May 24, 2012, early in the morning: My word. They didn't pass the retirement bills on Wednesday. Why? The votes weren't there. Time to keep up the heat on the legislators!

Here's every Louisiana senator and rep's email address: 

Send them some love. 
Wednesday, May 23, 2012, is probably "D-Day" for Louisiana state employees and retirees. Higher education funding is coming up soon. These proposals could go either way, and your voice is important. Speak out and speak up.

Here’s my summary of what’s coming down the track like the Sunset Limited:

SB 52 – Will violate the constitution and raise retirement contributions on SELECT state employees (divide and conquer). If this passes, all state employees will pay more and get less when the legislators pull ALL employees into the mix later. Teachers, get ready.

SB 740 - Will stop cost of living adjustments (COLAs) for current retirees for an "eternity." This is plain bad for retirees. It’s unnecessary, cruel, and disingenuous. They should hold off no more than two or three years as a temporary debt fix.

HB 61 – Will leave future retirees on welfare and food stamps. The cash-balance plan with no Social Security is a moral failure of epic proportions.

SB 749 (age 67 bill) - Unconstitutional and will change the retirement ages/years for SELECT current employees. All state employees will follow after this session if 749 passes in my humble opinion.

Note: I am for protecting pensions long-term, but I am not for destroying the pensions in order to “save” them. This is about privatizing all government services and giving the contracts to the fat cats. It's about employment reform and not about fixing the pensions’ unfunded accrued liability (UAL).

PAR has a Legislative Guide as an iPhone-android app for $2.99. I downloaded it  and it works like a charm. You can contact anyone in the legislature in seconds. Calls, emails, addresses, photos.

This is my hard-hitting guest editorial on higher ed funding - "Gut Check Time for Professors":

Read my 10-step guide for communicating about retirement (and higher ed cuts). It's a how-to guide:

If you’ve noticed some typos in my recent correspondence, I’m working 10-hour days and spending 5 hours on retirement and higher ed funding issues at night. I do the best I can under the circumstances.

Please share my email, web links, and blog with anyone you think might listen.

Take care. Keep the faith. Stay in touch.


Dayne Sherman, Writer, Speaker, Scholar
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***This message speaks only for the writer, a citizen, not for any present or past employer.***