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Union leaders vow court fight if pensions cut

February 2, 2013

HARRISBURG (AP) — Leaders of Pennsylvania’s two largest public employee unions on Friday vowed a court fight if Gov....

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(35)

mikekerstetter

Feb-05-13 1:46 PM

Cont'd.... The reason those systems are underfunded is not because of the employees (the employees are forced to pay in a percentage of their pay and have done so all along) nor their Unions (The union don't and never have had any control or input over either of the pensions) but was caused by the Government (who mandated the system) who failed to make their required payments over a period of 10 years, compounded by the stock market crash.

Your ignorance of the subject is causing your misplaced rage.

Further, you say now that you have nothing against government employees, but in another post said they are "overpaid, LAZY and greedy" and referenced "stupid teachers". And, yes, I know you said Union Workers, but the majority of Government Employees are members of unions. References like that certainly don't leave me of the opinion that you have nothing against public employee. Knowledge is a good thing. Ignorance just makes one look like a fool.

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mikekerstetter

Feb-05-13 1:33 PM

jhildy69-"Well here's my final input on this Mike. Look at all of the pension plans that are Billions of dollars in debt. The unions have made these promises to their members and now are unable to sustain them."

You are extremely misinformed and apparently don't comprehend what I have told you.

The Pensions for Government Employees have nothing to do with any Union. They were put in place by the State Legislature through bills passed by the state house and state senate and signed by the governor in place at the time. In other words, they are LAW. The union neither collect money nor manage the funds of the pension systems. School Employees are in what's called PSERS (Public School Employees Retirement System) and others are in the SERS (State Employees Retirement System). Each have their own board of directors appointed by the Commonwealth and neither are ran by any unions.

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jhildy69

Feb-05-13 11:11 AM

Well here's my final input on this Mike. Look at all of the pension plans that are Billions of dollars in debt. The unions have made these promises to their members and now are unable to sustain them. So who pays? Us non-union workers. Where does it end? It ends with a country totally in debt. I'm not against the public workers , I am against the unions making promises that they can't afford so they pass it on to us. The unions are my complaint, not the workers.

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mikekerstetter

Feb-05-13 4:02 AM

Cont'd... So given those facts, you don't have much factual support for your claim that public employees are overpaid. As I alluded to before, I suspect that you don't really care about the facts. Your mind is made up and you are unable to see the fallacy of your misplaced rage. But just in case there is just a hint of curiosity about the facts, here are those studies again. Google them:

"Out of Balance? Comparing Public and Private Sector Compensation Over 20 Years"

"Comparing Compensation: State-Local Versus Private Sector Workers".

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mikekerstetter

Feb-05-13 3:56 AM

jhildy69, you can certainly go on about public employees, but your not much into facts, are you?

I've given you places to go find those facts, but I suspect you don't care about the facts, you just want someone to blame.

Let's try again. 1) public employees are doing a job serving the citizens.

2) most public employees are paid less than their private industry counterparts, even with their benefits and pensions figured in.

3) most public employees pay into their pensions and most pay a portion of their health care, even after retirement.

4) the pensions of most public employees are mandatory by law and the money for those pensions are taken from their checks mandatorily, they can't opt out.

5) 25% of public employees don't qualify for Social Security, they rely entirely on their pension money.

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jhildy69

Feb-05-13 1:52 AM

Just to let you know Mike, I have a wonderful career, make a good living and have my retirement very well under control. So I certainly am not jealous of public workers. I AM disgusted that we private sector workers should have to be FORCED to foot the bill for your benefits, I personally took care of my own responsibilities and am forced to take care of yours too.

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FTMPTB1

Feb-04-13 4:30 PM

Mike, I just googled Out of Balance- Compairing public sector employees and private sector employees compensation over 20 years. There is alot of good information, and I think alot of people that comment on here should read it.

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mikekerstetter

Feb-04-13 3:34 PM

stacey21-"another fact is a lot of public sector employees are not entitled to social security"

According to the report I've seen, 25% of government employees aren't eligible for social security.

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djzlucky

Feb-04-13 1:22 PM

It's definitely true that we pay a percentage of our salary for both health care and pensions.

I'm currently contributing 6.25% towards retirement. The healthcare is less, at 1.5%, but that is because we are participating in the Wellness program which reduces our premiums. It's a fairly intense program, one example being if you have a high-blood pressure reading reported you will be called by a nurse and will be required to follow up with physicians. A small price to pay for good medical care, in my opinion.

I'm interested to hear the specifics of Gov. Corbett's proposal, as one thing I've heard is that he may try to enact some changes for new hires AND those that aren't yet vested in the State pension program (like me). The thought is that this will be an easier fight than going after those pensions that are already "secured".

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mikekerstetter

Feb-04-13 11:12 AM

djzlucky, I don't know why people begrudge government employees. Public perception is that they either sit with their feet propped up on a desk napping or there are 20 of them leaning on a shovel watching one guy work. Most people have no idea what the government employee does, what kinds of education they need or how much danger each of the different occupations are subjected to during their work day. Nor do they know that most of them make less than their private industry counterparts, even with any pension and benefit package added in, and do so willingly. Ask any of the whiners here who cry about Government workers benefits and pension if they would take a several dollar an hour cut in pay in trade for those benefits and pension. I'd bet they wouldn't. And lets not pretend that any of it comes free to the Government employees, most pay a percentage of both healthcare and pensions costs.

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FTMPTB1

Feb-04-13 9:32 AM

Well said djzlucky. We all make our career paths in life, and it sounds like a few people on here are unhappy with the path they've taken. If your unhappy with your career, or you don't like the pay or benefits of your job, than make a change. Don't bash somebody that has a decent job and benefits, because you don't have one.

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djzlucky

Feb-04-13 8:50 AM

I just wanted to chime in with my personal experience. I worked at Brodart for many years, until the economy crashed and libraries lost much of their funding. At that time Brodart began mass layoffs so I decided to look for a more stable position to support my family.

After searching in our area and finding that the majority of the open positions were in the gas industry and required much time away from home, I found a position at a state university. This position provided a family-sustaining wage and a generous benefits package. Even though my starting net pay would be a little less than what I made at Brodart, the benefits more than made up for the loss of a few dollars a week.

I don't understand how anyone could begrudge the fact that I went out and found the best opportunity available to provide for my wife and kids. This opportunity was open to any other qualified applicant that applied. How is what I chose to do wrong?

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stacey21

Feb-03-13 9:33 PM

Jhildy69 another fact is a lot of public sector employees are not entitled to social security

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stacey21

Feb-03-13 9:32 PM

Jhildy69 another fact is a lot of public sector employees are not entitled to social security

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mikekerstetter

Feb-03-13 6:27 PM

stacey21-"Jhildy69 I know several teachers and they get 50% of their salary for their pensions. Do you honestly believe they would make more just by retiring. If that were true don't you think everyone would choose that career path."

Stacy, teachers pensions are based on years of service x 2.5% x final average salary. It IS possible that with more than 40 years of service a teacher could make as much as when they retired. More if they are getting social security. But I highly doubt that jhildy69 knows anyone like that. Most teacher burn out long before reaching that 40 year milestone. And if they DO reach it, they deserve every penny of it for lasting that long working with disrespectful kids for that long.

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mikekerstetter

Feb-03-13 6:10 PM

jhildy69, just out of curiosity, did you happen to read either of the reports I referenced? I doubt that you did, given the fact that both provide evidence that public workers are paid less than their private industry counterparts even with their pensions and benefits included. Or is it that you choose to ignore those facts that are in opposition to what you want to believe?

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mikekerstetter

Feb-03-13 6:07 PM

jhildy69, you have lots of personal opinion there, but not much in the way of facts.

In 1980 gas was $1.03/gal, bread was 48 cents, milk was $1.60/gallon, the average new car was $5400, the median income was $11,000/year and minimum wage was $3.25/hr. Things go up, some more than others.

I sense some jealousy on your part that some people chose better career paths than you. Or perhaps it's because they planned better for their retirement. Any way you slice it though, your rage is misplaced at best and a complete lie at worst.

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 5:25 PM

Yea Mike, and look where this country is today, thank's pubic unions.

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 5:19 PM

Public union worker Stacey? I thought so.

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 5:17 PM

Well Stacey, I happen to know 2 teachers personally that are making 30% more after retiring. And I'm tired of paying for that.

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stacey21

Feb-03-13 4:04 PM

Jhildy69 I know several teachers and they get 50% of their salary for their pensions. Do you honestly believe they would make more just by retiring. If that were true don't you think everyone would choose that career path.

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 3:24 PM

Union workers are overpaid, LAZY and greedy, so I take it your union MIke

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 3:21 PM

Hey Mike, let the unions foot the bills that they created instead of the private sector

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jhildy69

Feb-03-13 3:14 PM

Well Mike, here is my proof. My property taxes have gone from $86 per year in 1980 to close to $5000 in 2010,paying for your greedy pensions and healthcare for stupid teachers. AND the FACT that teachers make more after retirement then they did when working. Your killing us.

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stacey21

Feb-03-13 8:52 AM

Sounds like andy33 should have applied for that state job that he is jealous about his buddy having. You know you have that freedom to take any career path in life. I would expect nothing less from the 33 brothers when it comes to union bashing. Well where are you jeff33. We're waiting.

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