2005 Regular Session Highlights
by: Angela Lockett-DeJean
Legislation affecting the benefits applicable to
members of two (Teachers' Retirement System of Louisiana and Louisiana State
Employees' Retirement System)of the four state retirement systems was the
prevailing issue concerning retirement this session. Although the majority of
the bills were deferred in committee
House Bill 658 Representative Schneider (Act 9) successfully
passed both houses. For persons hired on or after January 1, 2006, Act 9 by
Representative Schneider modifies the defined benefit structure
applicable to the majority of members of the Louisiana State Employees'
Retirement System (LASERS). As a result of Act 9, the following changes
apply to new hires of LASERS:
1) for persons whose first employment making them
eligible for LASERS membership began on or after January 1, 2006, average
compensation will be calculated using a 60 month period.
2) for any person applying to purchase service
credit, the service credit purchased can only be used for calculation of
benefits and not for eligibility purposes.
3) a member hired on or after January 1, 2006 is
eligible to retire if has 10 or more years of service credit at age 60 or
4) a member shall receive a benefit of 2.0% of
his average compensation for each year of creditable service.
5) persons whose first employment making them
eligible for LASERS membership began on or after January 1, 2006, receive a
disability benefit equal to 1.8% of average compensation for every years of
Bill 135 by Senator Dardenne (Pending In Conference Committee) also
proposed to change the retirement eligibility or new hires by requiring the
member to have 10 or more years of service credit at age 60 or thereafter.
Bills 7 and 305
by Senator Boasso (Subject To Call)
likewise affected LASERS and TRSL. While Senate
Bill 7 would have changed the average compensation, contribution rates,
accrual rates and benefits of new hires, Senate
Bill 305 would affect the administration of the two state retirement
systems and proposed to create one board to govern the two systems.