By Charley Wilkison
Director of Public Affairs
HB 958 reduces the interest crediting rate on all TCDRS funds from 7% to 5%, including employee accounts.
All County Sheriff Employees will be impacted if HB 958 passes and is signed into law. CLEAT is opposed to HB 958 since it cuts the guaranteed funding of 7% to all county employees retirement through the Texas County and District Retirement System, or TCDRS.
This bill would reduce the guaranteed percentage at a time when counties have a difficult time recruiting and retaining qualified public safety personnel to catch the criminals and keep them in the county jails.
No Political Tune Up Needed!
The TCDRS is one of the healthiest retirement plans in the country, currently at 89% funded. TCDRS current investment returns are 12.% for YTD 2012, 7.3% for the ten year average return, 7.3% for the twenty year return and 9.2% for the 30 year return. Obviously, TCDRS doesn’t need politicians monkeying around with your retirement.
CLEAT first heard of this bill at a meeting in Grayson County where a billionaire business owner demanded a meeting with the county commissioners and held forth at length in a public meeting as he complained about the local tax rate that included the county’s contribution to TCDRS. Obviously the manufactured pension envy related to public worker’s retirement has reached all the way into the very modest retirements of Texas’ finest who work for sheriff departments.
When you hear that county retirees are bankrupting Texas, that greedy county jailers and deputy sheriffs have their pensions guaranteed to the tune of a whopping 7% be sure to remind folks that the TCDRS average retiree receives only $18,312 annually after a lifetime of working on behalf of the citizens of their home county.
HB 958, A Solution to a Non-Existent Problem
Since TCDRS is funded at nearly 90%, the second most healthy retirement fund in Texas, and the majority of counties use the rule of 70, 75 or greater (years of service plus accrued age) then where’s the crisis to solve? Thank goodness, there is no pension crisis in Texas. There are issues that need to be fixed in other pension systems but TCDRS is one of the gold standard systems that is demonstrative of Texas’ conservative philosophy of pay as you go and not offering more than can be paid for by the taxpayers.
Be sure to let your local Sheriff, County Commissioner and local legislators know you that you oppose this bill.