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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pension proposal faces pushback in Florida Senate

21

February

For the second straight year, Florida lawmakers have proposed overhauling the state employee retirement system for new workers.

The measure failed in 2013. And this year's new bill might not fare any better.

The Florida Current reports that Senate President Don Gaetz has been counting votes on SB 1114 and has discovered significant opposition:

"There are about 18 senators right now who are opposed to any change. I think it’s going to be a close vote," Gaetz told the Florida Current. "Sen. (Wilton) Simpson is going to have to overcome objections. He’s going to have to make it clear that some of the demagoguery that sometimes occurs when an issue like this crops up, isn’t true. There’s no effect on current retirees or employees."

The Florida Education Association has already joined the criticism of bills aiming to change state pensions.

It’s bad enough that our public school teachers and ESPs are paid among the lowest in the entire country…now lawmakers are trying to complete a bad deal," FEA president Andy Ford wrote recently on Facebook. "As politicians begin gathering in Tallahassee, they are being asked to hurt quality professional public school teachers and ESPs by attacking retirement benefits. Let’s TAKE ACTION! Let Florida lawmakers know we want quality schools and quality teachers and ESPs."

SPB 7046 narrowly made it through the Senate Community Affairs Committee, which sponsor Simpson chairs, this week. Stay tuned.

[Last modified: Friday, February 21, 2014 9:37am]

    

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