Teacher pension bill unlikely to pass Michigan Senate

Posted at 8:31 PM, Dec 01, 2016

A controversial plan to close the state's teacher pension system to new employees has hit a road block.

Senate lawmakers could not come to an agreement Thursday.

The Snyder Administration claims the proposal could cost taxpayers nearly $4 billion in the next 5-years.

Senator Rick Jones, a Republican from Grand Ledge tells us a much bigger discussion about the issue needs to be had, a discussion that may wait until next year.

The senate was in session Thursday, where a vote on the bill was held off.

The bill would have only affected new hires that would be brought onto a 401 (K).

Since 2010, new hires have qualified for a plan which is a combination of a pension and 401 (K).

Older teachers receive a pension.

“A lot of teachers were told that this was somehow going to affect them, they didn't realize that it doesn't affect current teachers and it doesn't affect anyone that is retired,” said Jones. “It looks like the proposal is dead for now and we're going to see a lot more discussion.”

Democrats were largely against the bill, claiming it would cost the state by taking money out of the classroom to pay for retirement costs.

The $4 billion over the next five years would be costs on top of the $27 billion in unfunded liabilities for the current teacher pension plan.

The bills on the table do not address that amount.