Monday, November 28, 2016

The _____ still SLRP

SLRP.  The retirement fund that is appropriately named by its acronym.  Supplemental Legislative Retirement Fund.  It's a declaration by the legislature that states our elected solons are indeed better than the rest of us.  The legislature created SLRP to give themselves extra retirement pay not available to other state employees.  Call it time and a half pay for doing half of the work- if that much. The program currently holds $16.4 million in assets.

The current actuarial report provides more information about SLRP:

Market Value: $16.4 million
Funding level: 77.4%
Active members: 171
Retirees: 207 (Includes 38 survivors)
Average salary of active members: $40,130
Benefits paid: $1.486 million
Average benefit: $6,173
Average monthly benefit: $514
Average age: 71.5 years old
Contributions: $722,000
Unfunded liability: $4.8 million
Assumed rate of return: 7.75%
COLA: 3%

SLRP is a special retirement program created in 1989 just for legislators, giving them extra retirement pay in addition to the regular retirement they receive as members of PERS. Section 25-11-301 of the Mississippi Code states:

 There is hereby established and placed under the management of the Board of Trustees of the Public Employees' Retirement System of Mississippi a supplemental legislative retirement plan for the purpose of providing supplemental retirement allowances and other benefits under the provisions of this article for elected members of the State Legislature and the President of the Senate and their beneficiaries. The retirement plan provided by this article shall go into operation on July 1, 1989, when contributions by members shall begin and benefits shall become payable. This retirement plan is designed to supplement and is in addition to the provisions of Section 25-11-1 et seq. Under the terms of this article, the members of the State Legislature and the President of the Senate shall retain all social security benefits under Article 1 and additional state retirement and disability benefits under Article 3 of the Public Employees' Retirement Law of 1952, as amended. This article is a supplement to those sections, and is designed to provide more benefits for members of the State Legislature and the President of the Senate by reason of their service to the state. Section 25-11-301
Section 305 states SLRP shall include all members of the Legislature unless they choose to opt out of the program. Section 309 states "(1) The retirement allowance from the Supplemental Legislative Retirement Plan shall consist of fifty percent (50%) of an amount equal to the retirement allowance determined by creditable service"." In other words, SLRP gives legislators time and a half retirement pay in comparison to teachers, police officers, prosecutors, and other state employees.

 Keep in mind that these guys already receive regular retirement benefits as members of PERS!!!  SLRP is an extra payment they receive courtesy of our taxes.

You know the story.  Money is tight.  We have more needs than resources.  Corrections officers are woefully underpaid.  Medicaid is always running broke.  The state parks never receive the attention they deserve.  Meanwhile, these guys live in an alternate universe where they think they are more special than the state employees who serve and protect us.  The ones who actually do the real work.

SLRP is one thing that everyone agrees on in the legislature.  You don't hear one peep about this perk from those who are usually outraged at being outraged: the Black Caucus, McDanielites, the good gummint conservatives,  and even the few remaining white Democrats.  Bobby Moak didn't say one word about SLRP in all of the numerous press releases he sent to the media.   Conservative or liberal leadership, it doesn't matter as the result stays the same: silence.  Call it the Mississippi omerta.  Don't expect any changes regardless of who gets elected.  These guys love to SLRP.

Make no mistake, SLRP is not even 0.01% the size of PERS as PERS enjoys assets of $25 billion.  However, SLRP sets a standard that treats the legislature as a favored few.  The legislators don't deserve this extra pay and it's a stain on the government of Mississippi.  The legislature should abolish SLRP and be treated the same as the other state employees who do know something about work and sacrifice.  The only SLRPing the legislature should do is at Tico's.  SLRP needs to go.

Legislators can opt out of SLRP.  Ask your legislator if he has and if not, why not? 

 Earlier posts on SLRP
 The _____ are still SLRPing away
Still SLRPing
Legislators still SLRPing at the trough
WLBT covers SLRP last night
SLRP now has over $13 million
SLRP fund has over $11 million
WLBT covers SLRP
When do we stop the legislature from double-dipping?
SLRP: Supplemental Legislative Retirement Plan or Pigs SLRPing at a trough?


Of Plebes and Gentry said...

Would like to know how much the recently-retired Rita Martinson is drawing off each of these programs. She made herself famous for saying she had voted for, but not read, the bill that would again increase the retirement program for legislators.

These clowns have actually convinced themselves that it is THEY who are in the trenches of state workers and, therefore, deserve combat pay.

Meanwhile; Up in MadCo said...

Great story KF. Can you make a note to, at some point soon, get a copy of the contract just signed between MCEDA and Vision First? The Board of Supervisors is knee deep in it and it's a duplication, some are saying, of a study that was done just several years back. Who is Vision First? How is Phil Bryant involved? Who stands to benefit? What is the objective? Why has the contract been declared secret?

Anonymous said...

Average salary of $40,000 when the actual base salary of a legislator is about a quarter of that....until you realize they are allowed to include their stipends and travel money in the calculation. This is downright criminal.

Anonymous said...

Once again there is proof positive of the fact that politicians, Democrat or Republican, Black or White, liberal or conservative, will do whatever they can get away with to enrich themselves. It's all a matter of accountability. The dumb ass electorate concentrates on some emotional issue while the bastards feather their own nests and hope nobody is looking. Public servants? B.S.

Anonymous said...

It's good to be the king.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe that legislators can opt-out of SLRP. Double-check that.

Anonymous said...

Those Democrats made suckers out of the people in 89, will Tater and Gunny do the right thing in 2017? I'm not betting on that. It really doesn't matter to me, I pay sales taxes but since I am a disabled veteran I don't pay any property or income taxes.

Anonymous said...

Can you make a note to, at some point soon, get a copy of the contract just signed between MCEDA and Vision First?

Why don't you go file a FOIA and fetch the contract?

Hit the damn tip jar hard and then email KF telling him you'd like to sponsor some research or get off your butt and chase down the contract yourself.

North side said...

OHH great work KF!
Thanks for the work you do!

about that MCEDA and VISIONFIRST saga... rumor is there were changes made to the scope of request made by the County Supervisors by the MCEDA board in a public meeting.

Who in the word just changes the scope of what you are asked to do?

We have to wonder to wanted this and which one of those board members made it happen.

Maybe those minutes would tell.

Anonymous said...

Legislators may not be able to opt out of the SLURP slush fund, but they can vote to eliminate it. Of course that will not be happening. Such an act would require transparent statesmanship, which is of course greatly lacking in both parties.

Anonymous said...

All these sorry Bastards seem to come out on top one way or another.

When are the voters going to get it thru their thick ass skulls that we elect the same old crooks every time and kiss their asses every time we see them. As my Momma use to say "A politician is white trash thru and thru" and my Momma don't lie.

Everyone we send to Washington comes back rich---does that not tell you something---just look at that sack of S--- named Trent Lott.

Anonymous said...

Has there even been a chance to vote to change it? Has there been a bill?

Anonymous said...

And in another thread people were complaining about dictators making all of the rules. Sounds just like what has happened right here. Someone please tell me what is the difference?

Anonymous said...

A really good example is Cindy Hyde-Smith. She continues her quest to become Lt. Gov. or further on our $$$. She knew nothing about State Govt., agriculture and certainly less about leading the State of Mississippi. She married money and that still wasn't enough for her power grab. Like Feel, I have known her since she couldn't pay attention; literally. Please name anything positive that she has done for our state since she has furthered her income at tax payer's expense? I voted for her twice and shame on me. At least I voted for Bryant only once. She is literally Hillary Clinton in blue jeans and a cowboy hat.

Anonymous said...

Lets take another look at what our leaders have done.
They spent $2 million on a study on how kids did not like to eat food that was sneezed on. Wonder who came up with that and where the money went.

Our leaders also spent $2 billion on hospitals and infrastructure in Palestine. Guess they thought we didn't need the money right here at home.

We might take a look at dictators. How much worse can one be?

Anonymous said...

Yes there have been bills to eliminate the SLURP fund for legislators, but they did not see the light of day (not brought up in committee). Leadership on both sides of the aisle lacks the guts to tackle this issue. Frankly, how can you expect them to do anything. They have a slight conflict of interest on the issue.

Anonymous said...

Hate to say it but most of these legislators are actually proxies for someone else. The truth of the matter is that most are not very smart and could not make it in business with competition. Which is why they will do the work others want them to do.

Of course, there are a few qualified legislators. Unfortunately the rest give them a bad name. I remember one telling me how great it was that they get a daily per diem amount for food but that there is usually a "buffet" or free meal they can get. Wow, these are the guys running this state?

Anonymous said...

Even the "good" legislators are not interested in repealing their SLURP fund. They feel like they deserve it. I suggest that SLURP benefits be reduced for each free meal or drink that a legislator accepts. This would effectively eliminate all SLURP benefits. What say you Tate and Phillip?

Anonymous said...

Key issue....legislators' per diem payments are included in calculation of benefits for SLRP....these dollars are not taxed as income, yet are included in base compensation salary calculations for SLRP....a lot of money!

Anonymous said...

If Russ Latino wants to make himself useful why doesn't he get involved with SLRP. He and Francis could drink a lot of wine and discuss this topic.

Anonymous said...

Please break it down in simple terms for people to comprehend. Legislator is elected for four-year term. What is their pay including per diem, travel, etc.; how much do they contribute to SLURP; what is the retirement benefit if they are not re-elected? Actual numbers are more telling than percentages. What can they expect to receive after 4-8-12-16 years of service?

Also how many hours a week/session do they put in? Since Mondays and Friday's are for travel, basically it's a three-day work week, or 36-day session each year.

The Money Tree - A Lesson In Legislative Benefits said...

Back about 1995 or so, yes, there was a bill that would affect SLRP. However, that bill only included provisions to effectively double SLRP, not decrease or abolish it.

After word got out and the public (the few who gave a rat's ass) began to grumble and send letters to editors and do a little griping, the bill died. But, not before there was a vote held in the House and most incumbents claimed they didn't realize the bill would increase their retirement benefits. Some said they voted for it but hadn't read it. Say What?

Who among us is foolish enough to believe they would ever vote to abolish their golden parachute?

SLRP and other legislative benefits is like having a two gallon jug of quarters on the counter and telling your ten year old to reach in each week and get whatever he wants for his weekly allowance. The jug never runs empty and the hand only grows larger with age.

Anonymous said...

@ 5:18 who actually tried to get rid of this? It seems like they deserve not to be lumped in with the rest of the greedy lot.

Anonymous said...

The vast majority of a legislator's time is spent having meals and liquor with lobbyists at private receptions. There is virtually some type of dinner or reception every night of the legislative session. The average legislator will make 25-30K per year in salary and per diem. Some make more, some less depending on committee assignments and out of session travel. Bottom line is they qualify for the regular retirement system already. No need to have a supplemental system. It is a part time job and they knew it when they signed on to run for the office. It is a travesty that elected leaders like Tate and Phillip can stand there and talk about waste in government while drawing on two retirement systems.

Anonymous said...

Nothing is too good for the royal family. Other countries have their kings, queens, dictators. Why should the people here in the U.S. not have the same chance to have royals? People need to stop complaining and be thankful they do not vote themselves a larger salary, more benefits, and a better retirement. After all they work a hard 3 days a week.

Anonymous said...

12:33 That should be available with a public records request. They may not even require a formal request. Just go by the Chancery Clerks office and ask for it. If the contract was with MCEDA, then MCEDA should have it.

Anonymous said...

4:16....Of course MCEDA has it. So does the clerk since the Board is involved. But all three have refused to release it to the public. This is nothing more than a contract with Haley and his surrogate, Phil. Duplicates a contract entered into five years ago almost verbatim, 'word has it'. Warnock is not the only crook north of County Line Road.

North side said...


Who is all 3 who have been asked to release it ?

Anonymous said...

At least eliminate the COLA!

Anonymous said...

6:40...Board members, The Chancery Clerk's Office and MCEDA. Not sure who the signatories are, but all three are in possession of the contract. Haley is said to be a principle in the contracted organization. Madison County has operated in the dark for thirty years. Nothing changes but the names.

Anonymous said...

If you like SLERP, you should check out the state troopers retirement program. Then they go to work for the county or city and get a second retirement.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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