Welcome To CT

My Left Nutmeg

A community-driven blog featuring news and commentary on local, state, and national politics.

Ads on My Left Nutmeg
 
 


 
Contact Info
To contact the site admin email ctblogger at ctblogger@yahoo.com

My Left Nutmeg

Define fiscally and morally irresponsible? Malloy's plan for older, retired teachers.

by: ctblogger

Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 07:15:16 AM EST


Cross post from Jon Pelto's Wait What?

There are a lot of crazy, irresponsible and down-right mean things in Governor Malloy's budget proposal, but his plan to totally eliminate Connecticut's contribution to the retired teachers' health insurance fund may very well take the cake.

For nearly sixty years, the State of Connecticut has been helping retired teachers acquire health insurance.

Prior to 1986, active teachers did not pay into the Federal Medicare system, so when they retired, they didn't qualify for Medicare, the primary health insurance system for older Americans.

Furthermore, since teacher salaries were historically so low prior to the educational enhancement act of 1986, older teachers were retiring with very small pensions.  With no Medicare and limited incomes, few could afford the most basic level of health insurance coverage, without some type of subsidy.

For nearly 4 decades, the State of Connecticut utilized a variety of different mechanisms to help these older, retired teachers get some health insurance.  In 1991 it settled on the creation of the Retired Teachers Health Insurance Fund.

To fund the program, active teachers contribute 1.2 percent of their income into the health fund.  This year that amounts to about $45 million.

The premiums that retired teachers pay for their insurance brings in about $37 million.

And state law required that the State of Connecticut contribute 33 percent of the cost of a Medicare supplement plan into the Insurance Fund.

Together these funds were used to help retired teachers get health insurance through the Teacher's Retirement Board or through their last employing board of education.  The subsidy isn't much, only $110 per month, and despite the massive increase in health insurance premium costs, the subsidy hasn't been increased since 2000.  The Teachers Retirement Board has determined that the $110 subsidy "now covers "on average" only 14% of the monthly premium for the retiree, further eroding the value of the retiree's pension.

But as bad as things have become, even the $110 helped a little as these retired teachers were forced to shell out of their own pockets an additional $500 to $900 a month to buy insurance through their former boards of education.

There's more below the fold...

ctblogger :: Define fiscally and morally irresponsible? Malloy's plan for older, retired teachers.
Meanwhile, some towns are engaging in a whole separate effort to change the rules and unfairly force teachers off their municipal plans, but I'll cover that growing problem under a separate post.

In any case, for good or for bad, the present system has been functioning fairly well.

And then to balance the state budget in Fiscal year 2010 and 2011, Governor Rell and the Democrats decided to insert language that allowed the state to forgo any contribution for two years.  The lack of funding created a situation that began to derail the financial stability of the Retired Teachers Health Insurance Fund.

When Governor Malloy was sworn in, rather than recommit the state to the appropriate level of funding, he proposed shifting the burden onto the backs of the retired teachers.  The Legislature rightfully rejected the move, but "compromised" by agreeing to only allocate 25% of the value of a Medicare supplement plan rather than the 33% required by the law.

While the state did deposit $35 million in Fiscal Year 2012 and $18 million in Fiscal Year 2013, by refusing to deposit the appropriate amount the Fund was, yet again, undermined.

And then came this year...

Malloy went for broke and proposed simply making no payments what-so-ever into the fund.
Irresponsible
Outrageous
Inappropriate
Incredible
Breathtaking

This Governor, who ran on a platform of fiscal responsibility, proposing that the state simply forgo putting $70 million into the Retired Teachers Health Insurance Fund.

Here are the facts;

In 2012 the Teacher Retirement Board health plan was serving 18,804 retired teachers

In 2012, the Teacher Retirement Board was also paying the town subsidy on behalf of 16,725 retired teachers.

The average age of the retired teacher on the Teacher Retirement Board's plan is 75 years old.

These teachers received a $0 cost of living adjustment in their pensions in 2010 and 2011.

The Governor's plan is simply outrageous.

Oh, and by the way, the General Assembly's Appropriations Committee is holding a public hearing today on Malloy's Teachers Retirement Health Care proposal.

Appropriations Committee Public Hearing
Thursday, February 21
Elementary & Secondary Education (Room 2D)
2:00- 2:30 PM Teachers' Retirement Board
2:30- 3:00 State Library
3:00- 4:30 Department of Education
Public Budget Hearings (Room 2C) 6:00 PM

Tags: (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

 
0 user(s) logged on.
Menu

Make a New Account

Username:

Password:



Forget your username or password?


Spotlight

Use the Spotlight tool to send a diary to offline journalists, with your feedback or suggestions.
(What is Spotlight?)


Search


   Advanced
My Left Nutmeg Feeds

Links


Connecticut's War Dead



 
Blogroll
Powered By
- SoapBlox

Connecticut Blogs
- Capitol Watch
- Colin McEnroe
- Connecticut2.com
- Connecticut Bob
- ConnecticutBlog
- CT Blue Blog
- CT Energy Blog
- CT Local Politics
- CT News Junkie
- CT Smart Growth
- CT Voices for Civil Justice
- CT Voters Count
- CT Weblogs
- CT Working Families Party
- CT Young Dems
- Cool Justice Report
- Democracy for CT
- Drinking Liberally (New Milford)
- East Haven Politics
- Emboldened
- Hat City Blog (Danbury)
- The Laurel
- Jon Kantrowitz
- LieberWatch
- NB Politicus (New Britain)
- New Haven Independent
- Nutmeg Grater
- Only In Bridgeport
- Political Capitol (Brian Lockhart)
- A Public Defender
- Rep. David McCluskey
- Rep. Tim O'Brien
- State Sen. Gary Lebeau
- Saramerica
- Stamford Talk
- Spazeboy
- The 40 Year Plan
- The Trough (Ted Mann: New London Day)
- Undercurrents (Hartford IMC)
- Wesleying
- Yale Democrats

CT Sites
- Clean Up CT
- CT Citizen Action Group
- CT Democratic Party
- CT For Lieberman Party
- CT General Assembly
- CT Secretary of State
- CT-N (Connecticut Network)
- Healthcare4every1.org
- Judith Blei Government Relations
- Love Makes A Family CT



Other State Blogs
- Alabama
- Arizona
- California
- Colorado
- Delaware
- Florida
- Georgia
- Idaho
- Illinois
- Indiana
- Iowa
- Kentucky
- Louisiana
- Maine
- Maryland
- Massachusetts
- Michigan
- Minnesota
- Missouri
- Missouri
- Montana
- Nebraska
- Nevada
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- New York
- North Carolina
- Ohio
- Ohio
- Oklahoma
- Oregon
- Pennsylvania
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
- Tennessee
- Texas
- Texas
- Utah
- Vermont
- Virginia
- Washington
- West Virginia
- Wisconsin



Powered By
MLN is powered by SoapBlox
 
Powered by: SoapBlox