The omnibus retirement bill is in a “continuous state of flux.”
The House State Government Finance Committee gave the bill its blessing on a divided voice vote, sending it to the House Ways and Means Committee. The companion, SF545, sponsored by Sen. Julie Rosen (R-Vernon Center), awaits action on the Senate Floor.
O’Driscoll said he expects the bill to stay “parked” in the House and Senate, pending the striking of a “global deal,” upon which “we can take action.”
The committee first adopted two amendments.
The first, offered by O’Driscoll, removed part of the bill that would have appropriated $4.5 million to the Public Employees Retirement Association’s Police and Fire Fund in both 2017 and 2018, then $9 million annually; and $5 million annually to the St. Paul Teachers Retirement Fund Association.
Removing the appropriations would keep the bill within existing joint budget targets, but O’Driscoll said they would be reintroduced as part of anticipated global agreements.
The second, offered by Rep. Sarah Anderson (R-Plymouth), committee chair, deleted provisions related to the Teachers Retirement Association. Laurie Fiori Hacking, executive director of the association, said she hoped to see those provisions “reinserted” in the bill at a later date.
Rep. Sheldon Johnson (DFL-St. Paul), opposes the bill in its current version because it would not appropriate new state funds, and because of what he called a “seeming direction” of the bill taking on a “partisan nature.”
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