Wolf To Sign Public Employee Pension Reform Bill Next Week

HARRISBURG (News Radio 1020 KDKA) – A spokesman says Gov. Tom Wolf next week will sign a bill that will change the pension structure for future Pennsylvania public school teachers and state employees.

The bill given final legislative approval by the House Thursday is intended to shift new hires fully or partially toward 401(k) style defined contribution plans. Supporters hail the measure as “historic.”

But on the House floor, some lawmakers, like Republican John McGinnis, said the plan is inadequate because it does not significantly address the billions of dollars of existing pension liability.

“We’re not making history, Mr. Speaker, we are repeating it,” said McGinnis.

Republican Dave Reed, the House majority leader, says the state will continue to gradually pay down its hefty pension debt.

“We’re going to make sure that we keep those commitments by reprioritizing spending,” said Reed.

Gov. Wolf has said the bill is a compromise that addresses pension costs while providing a fair retirement benefit.

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