Sen. Knopp & Rep. Conger introducing PERS bill

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Sen. Tim Knopp and Rep. Jason Conger

Salem, OR – Senator Tim Knopp (R-Bend) along with Representative Jason Conger (R-Bend) are set to provide fiscal relief to communities struggling with spiraling Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) expenses. Oregon agencies have to cut their service because of staggering increases in retirement expenses. The bill (SB 651) will remove legislators from being members of PERS.

“For many communities, the price tag of PERS has forced them to make significant cuts in education, health, and public safety.” states Sen. Knopp. “Because of our budget crisis, we have a unique opportunity in Oregon to obtain real meaningful PERS reforms. Already this session, the Governor and Legislators have proposed changes in PERS. With this bill we are leading by example by fixing state legislators conflict of interest.”

Originally legislators weren’t allowed to join PERS. However during the 1975 legislative session there was a bill to reverse that rule. Many who study PERS, point to this specific waypoint where the retirement system became compromised.

“I have heard from many citizens who are concerned that the Legislature is biased when it considers PERS reforms because many legislators are also PERS members” Representative Conger reported.  “Whether that is true or not, the public’s confidence and trust in our elected representatives is critical to a strong republic.  By keeping legislators out of PERS, this bill will simply take a significant step to remove even the perception of conflict.”

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Posted by at 12:35 | Posted in OR 77th Legislative Session, PERS, Public Employees Retirement System | 865 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • guest

    From executive, legislative and judicial branches an’ over to the lowest common denominator including part time employed, “public servants” throughout the entire grid or spectrum should have privatized pensions. Period!

    That’s a pretty much common sense way to mitigate foxes from entering fiduciary hen houses and other proletarian-rats from taxpayer silos.

    Indeed, a tableau set before US is Congress signifying as a worst offender in that retard – and even the first lady, M.O. of flitting about on expensive vacation excursions suggests her carnal cruise ought be cancelled, too.

  • 3H

    This bill will not provide fiscal relief to local communities because legislators, I’m guessing, are paid by the state, not by the communities they represent. How are those communities saving any money?

  • ardbeg

    Legislators aren’t really the problem (barring the conflict of interest thang) their salary is small enough and years of service short enough that, unless they have some sort of sweetheart deal, don’t really account for that much of PERS. The biggest problem I see are high end ‘executives’ who run the department of Blah Blah Blah. Those folks make 100k plus. I don’t begrudge them their salary, but I don’t know if PERS was really designed for them. They have a high end salary compared to a teacher who starts at 30k or a cop that starts at 40k. If your hired to run the Department of ……. and are paid private sector wages, I’m sure that job shouldn’t have the same retirement that was designed for someone starting at 30-40k a year.

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