Senate Bill would eliminate future teacher pensions

LANSING, MI — A bill that’s being discussed by lawmakers in Lansing would eliminate future public school employees from the state retirement pension plan. Senate Bill 102, first introduced by Republican Senator Phil Pavlov in February of 2015, picked up steam this week.

On Wednesday, a Senate Appropriations Committee voted nine to eight in favor of the legislation, which would deny public school employees hired after July 1st, 2015 from the states defined benefit pension plan. Instead, those employees would be offered a 401K plan.

Marquette Area Public Schools Superintendent Bill Saunders says the bill could have a negative impact on getting future educators into the system.

“We’re really competing against other businesses, other organizations for the best and brightest when they come out of college. We’re not going to have the top quality person in that classroom teaching our students,” said Saunders.

“Folks that don’t have the educational background are trying to legislate and make changes in education without really consulting the educators and those folks that are involved,” he added.

Currently, the state has a nearly $27 billion deficit in the Michigan Public School Retirement System. The senate is expected to take up a vote on the measure in the near future.