Shame on me for agreeing with BTU but it had to happen.
The teachers union actually came up with a position that’s agreeable to it’s most ardent critic.
BTU has joined the statewide teachers union in the lawsuit seeking to stop the 3% holdback of teacher wages to contribute to their retirement accounts.
They’re calling it an income tax. It isn’t.
But the state and it’s public employee entities have had a contract, written or implied, with it’s employees on how their retirement accounts would be funded.
The state effectively broke that contract without negotiation by requiring the holdback.
I have no problem with requiring public employees to contribute to their own pensions, but imposing new conditions on a contract without negotiation is a violation of federal labor laws and the courts are very likely to agree.
The Reagan administration did it the right way in 1986 when switching from federally funded retirement accounts for federal employees to the social security system.
They kept their covenant with those still working and applied the changes only to new employees entering government service.
That’s what the Legislature and Governor should have done.
In doing so, they could have restructured the pension plan entirely. Or scrapped it.
Hopefully, the courts will see the forest through the trees and block the holdback as unconstitutional.