Bob Kefgen's blog
Two weeks down, one to go. And while only a few issues have made it across the finish line, there is still plenty outstanding and the clock hasn't run out yet. Let's review the last week's worth of activity and see where the still outstanding issues are standing.
Legislation to close the MPSERS system for new hires and move them into a 401k-style system passed out of the Senate Appropriations Committee this past Wednesday by a one-vote margin and has yet to see a floor vote, though that could change quickly with the lame duck clock ticking.
Week one of lame duck is in the books and while MPSERS is certainly foremost in many people's minds, there are plenty of other issues at stake as the legislature wraps up its 2015-2016 session. An income tax proposal has surfaced that could end up costing schools hundreds of millions of dollars; seclusion/restraint legislation is still out there; zero tolerance reform is also a possibility. Lets walk down the list of what's happening so far this lame duck session.
Income Tax Shift
Last week, we walked through the pre-Lame Duck rumors about a possible MPSERS reform bill. This past Wednesday, the Senate Appropriations Committee reported out a three bill package that would close the MPSERS pension system for new hires and instead move them into a 401k-style system. Those bills are now awaiting a vote on the Senate floor, but no vote has yet materialized.
Back in early October, I told attendees at the MASSP Principal's Summit that, depending on the outcome of the election, MPSERS reform was one possible issue that could come up during this year's lame duck session. Since then, I've lost track of the number of emails I've received with questions about what the legislature intends to do. With lame duck slated to start in just a few days, let's review what little we actually know and how much we don't.