District 24 State Senator Elbert Guillory (R-Opelousas) urges Governor-elect Edwards to support and protect the state’s public retirement systems.

As the current chair of the Senate Committee on Retirement, Sen. Guillory sent Governor-elect Edwards a letter expressing his concern and recommendations for the future of the public retirement systems.

“Providing our retirees a modest benefit at an affordable price should continue to be an utmost priority for this state,” said Sen. Guillory.

The recommendations made in the letter are the product of stakeholder meetings organized by Sen. Guillory in recent months. Sen. Guillory brought together a variety of stakeholders to put together the list of ideas for consideration in the new term. Those stakeholders include LABI, PAR, the Louisiana Budget Project, the retirement systems, retiree groups, Rep. Kevin Pearson, Chairman of the House Committee on Retirement, the Laura & John Arnold Foundation, the Pew Center, and the National Institute for Retirement Security.

Sen. Guillory said that most of the ideas address providing the systems with additional money sooner rather than later and making the systems more actuarially sound.

The senator emphasized that any discussion about the benefits of La. public employees must include two primary considerations – (1) the lack of social security and (2) the need to keep retirees from falling into poverty and causing them to utilize public assistance programs.