In A Flash

Retired Louisiana teachers, state police may get benefits increase

By: - April 4, 2022 4:56 pm

McDonogh 35 history teacher Donald Hess works with his students. The Louisiana Department of Education will receive about $2.6 billion from the COVID-19 relief package. (Photo courtesy of Donald Hess)

Louisiana lawmakers are considering the first benefit bonus for retired Louisiana teachers since 2016.

Senate Bill 6, authored by Sen. Ed Price, D-Gonzales, would provide retired teachers who qualify a 2% increase in their retirement benefits. It would apply to retirees over age 60 and those who retired due to disability.

Price’s bill advanced from a Senate Finance Committee without objection.

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If the Legislature approves, the increase would go to some 76,000 retired teachers who would see an average monthly benefit increase of $42, said Katherine Whitney, director of the Teacher Retirement System of Louisiana. The bill would add an additional cost of $369 million to the system’s core pension fund, she said.

The increase would go into effect July 1.

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A similar retirement benefit increase for state police also advanced from the Senate committee. Right now, the average annual benefit for a state police retiree is about $57,243, Kevin Reed, executive director of the Louisiana State Police Retirement System, said.

The state police retirement benefit increase would cost the system’s core pension fund about $9.5 million, according to the bill’s fiscal note. The average monthly benefit increase for retired state police would be $65.60, Reed said.

Both bills move to the Senate floor for a full vote.

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JC Canicosa
JC Canicosa

JC Canicosa is an award-winning journalist at The Louisiana Illuminator. Canicosa has previous experience at Investigate-TV and The Loyola Maroon and earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Loyola University New Orleans. At Loyola, he was the senior staff writer at The Maroon and the president of the school's chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Off the clock, Canicosa enjoys playing basketball, watching movies and dabbling in comedy writing.

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