Will TDCJ employees lose their current retirement benefits, as well as more medical benefits?
Public Employees Defined Pension Plans
July 20, 2012 - by Toby Tobias
CEC 7, Huntsville, TX
The age-old axiom: A new broom seldom sweeps clean, is perhaps true; but also true is even though a new broom seldom sweeps clean, it is amazing how many people are allergic to dust the new broom makes, whether or not it sweeps clean.
So, here is a dustup for you: Public Employees Pension Plans are under a brutal and well-planned attack by "big money people and large corporations." Why? The vast and staggering amount of dollars accumulated in the aggregate of your statement plan is truly a goodly amount of money.
Hardly a week goes by that there isn't a newspaper article or television news comment regarding public employee pension plans. Bear in mind in the state of California the voters in the cities of San Jose and San Diego have passed resolutions against their public employee pension benefits and this philosophy appears to have found fertile ground in the East where we hold residency.
The real question here is why outsiders such as John Arnold (Houston) and his foundation, The Koch brothers and "Alec", the political arm of the Koch brothers, are so interested in taking a defined pension benefit plan. The ALEC Group has been known to write their own legislative bills and have State House Members file it for them. Because ALEC gave a house member a political contribution? Could it be that they have some affiliation with investment brokerage firms and could make mega amounts of money from fees charged to only contributions such as 401K plans or other such plans, and from these, in the name of conservative government, would either change or take away your existing pension plan?
Please remember we Texans have a general election coming up in November and it is very important to ask our state legislators, both incumbents and those aspiring to be elected, just exactly where they stand on the question of changing public employee pensions from the current and long-held defined benefit to a defined contribution.
If they give us the answer we are looking for, then we know whether to vote for or against them. However, if they hedge on the answer or talk around the issue we suggest a vote against them. There is no point in taking a chance on someone who will not take a stand.
We suggest a united front in combating this coming storm by standing in solidarity with one another. One way of being united is to consider joining your fellow employees in the Union (currently around 5,000 strong). AFSCME/CEC7 has stood for employee rights and their general good and welfare for over twenty years. After all, there is and always has been strength in numbers.
AFSCME-CEC7 already is geared up to take this issue head one, along with privatization and anticipated health care changes. Please feel free to call 1-800-374-9772 if you have any questions or require additional information. You may also log on to our website - CEC7.org - and browse at your leisure.
In closing, to those outside organizations, BRING ON YOUR BROOMS! We intend to show up with high-powered leaf blowers and see who can stir up the most dust.