State Budget Surplus Should Fund PSF

Posted by Tom Mellish, Executive Director, IRTA on Jul 27, 2016 2:30:40 PM

IRTA-Legislative-Action-Alert2-1.pngAfter reading Indiana Gov. Mike Pence’s press release on July 25, 2016, I ask that you join me in emailing or writing him to suggest what he should do with the state's $50 million dollar budget surplus.

Gov. Pence has sole discretion to spend the surplus this summer. 

In 2013, Gov. Pence used all of the $66 million surplus to pay off prison construction loans. In 2014, he used the $210 million surplus to pay off small business loans ahead of schedule to save small businesses from having a short term tax increase.

The Pension Stabilization Fund (PSF) has not received any surplus in the last few years. In past years, the legislature also has not given state retirees a Cost of Living Adjustment is due to increasing the liability of the pre 1996 retirement fund.

If Gov. Pence would use this year’s surplus ($50.7 million) and pay it toward the PSF, the legislature could then grant a Cost of Living Adjustment and/or a “13th Check” stipend to retired educators in 2017 without increasing the liability on the pre-1996 Retirement Fund.

Here are some points that you may want to use in your personal emails or letters to the governor and lieutenant governor:

  • Placing the surplus into the Pension Stabilization Fund helps long term fiscal health of the state and it’s bond ratings.

  • The move would allow the legislature the opportunity to give a COLA without further burden to pre-1996 unfunded liability.

  • More than 14,000 retired educators receive less than $1,000 per month from their pension.

  • More than 6,000 retired educators receive less than $650 per month from their pension.

  • Retired teachers have not receive a cost of living increase in their pension for more than eight years.

  • The state budget surplus is larger than it has ever been.

  • Retired educators have lost more than 18 percent purchasing power since 2008.

  • Less spending by retired educators means less tax revenue.

Please remember to write in a polite and positive manner in your own words. Share any hardships that you have experienced due to lack of a pension increase in the last eight years.

We also recommend you write to Lt. Gov. Eric Holcomb, since he is now the Republican candidate for governor.

Thank you for your continued support.

Contact Information

The Honorable Mike Pence
Office of the Governor
200 West Washington Street
Room 206
Indianapolis, IN  46204

Email Gov. Pence

The Honorable Eric Holcomb
Office of the Lieutenant Governor
200 West Washington Street
Room 333
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Email Lt. Gov. Holcomb

Topics: Legislature

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