Posts tagged: pensions
OLYMPIA — The state should cut off automatic increases to some state retirees and keep others from retiring then being rehired for their old jobs, Gov. Chris Gregoire said today.
It should also revamp health insurance programs to find savings from large purchase and reductions in unneeded services, she added.
Gregoire unveiled several proposals Monday afternoon that she said could spell big savings over the next two-year budget cycle and beyond. It’s part of a slow roll-out of her fiscal 2011-13 budget, which will continue Tuesday and wrap up with a full budget book Wednesday.
Among the proposals floated Monday were an end to automatic increases to most of the retirees on the state’s oldest pension systems, PERS 1 and TRS 1. The increases were passed by the Legislature in 1995 as protection against inflation, but with inflation low, Gregoire is calling for the state to go back to the old system of letting the Legislature vote on any adjustments it sees fit.
OLYMPIA — There are still many questions for the legislative session, but at least one certainty: passage of improvements in pensions and other benefits for law enforcement and firefighters.
Spurred by a series of murders of law enforcement officers in Western Washington, Gov. Chris Gregoire and members of both parties in both houses are ready to extend full pension benefits to police, sheriffs deputies, state troopers and firefignters killed in the line of duty even if they haven’t been on the job the currently required 10 years.
A bill to do just that, HB 2519, as well as lift the penalty for a surviving spouse and to waive tuition and fees at any state college for that spouse or the children of the slain officer or fire fighter, sailed out of the House Ways and Means Committee this afternoon with no debate and no questions for the witnesses calling for its passage.
After emotional testimony from widows of slain officers, the chief of police of Lakewood, Wash., where four officers were murdered Nov. 29, other law enforcement officials and the state pension board, the committee voted 22-0 to send the bill to the floor with a “Do Pass” recommendation from both parties.