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FL Lawmakers Trade State Worker Raises For Benefit Changes

DXR via wikimedia commons
Credit DXR via wikimedia commons

Florida lawmakers are approving a measure giving state workers a raise in exchange for revamping benefit plans.  The proposal passed alongside the state budget on the final day of Florida’s legislative session.

Most state workers will get a $1,000 or $1,400 bump—with the bigger raise going to those making less than $40,000 annually.  To get the raise, senators agreed to make the default retirement option for most employees an investment rather than a pension plan.  But Sen. Jack Latvala (R-Clearwater) defends the move, pointing out many workers leave their profession before vesting.

“You know if they’re in the investment plan,” Latvala says, “at least they’d have the growth of their contribution and the match for each of those first seven or eight years before they left.”

The measure doesn’t lock anyone out of the pension plan, but employees have to opt in sometime during their first eight months of employment.

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Nick Evans came to Tallahassee to pursue a masters in communications at Florida State University. He graduated in 2014, but not before picking up an internship at WFSU. While he worked on his degree Nick moved from intern, to part-timer, to full-time reporter. Before moving to Tallahassee, Nick lived in and around the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years. He listens to far too many podcasts and is a die-hard 49ers football fan. When Nick’s not at work he likes to cook, play music and read.
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