Virginia Coalition of Police
and Deputy Sheriffs




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Governor McDonnell to Send Down Budget Amendment Keeping Existing Retirement Contribution System
in Place for Current Local Government Employees

RICHMOND- As part of his package of budget amendments that must be completed by midnight, Governor Bob McDonnell will ask the General Assembly to reject a previously passed provision giving localities the ability to shift retirement expenses to local government employees, including teachers, police officers, sheriffs and others. The Governor will ask the General Assembly to treat current local employees the same as current state employees in the funding of their retirement plans.

Speaking about his amendment, Governor McDonnell noted, “The men and women who serve the Commonwealth in our state and local governments have devoted their professional lives to public service. It is important that we treat that service with the respect it deserves. Current state and many local employees took their jobs with the expectation that their retirement contributions would come from their employer. We cannot turn our back on that agreement. To do so would be unfair to Virginians who work hard for our Commonwealth every day. We should make necessary changes to our retirement system and I do support changes to the contribution requirements for future state employees, and for future local employees if a locality chooses to make such a change. For current government employees a promise was made, and it should be kept.”

The budget introduced by the previous Administration called for current state employees to contribute 1% of their payroll to their pensions in 2011 and 2% in 2012. As a candidate for Governor, McDonnell opposed such a change in policy. Upon taking office he worked with the General Assembly to remove this proposal from the budget. The General Assembly did pass a budget amendment granting localities the authority to require current local government employees to contribute to their retirements, in a similar fashion as was proposed for current state employees. This amendment will remove that authority.

We must now work hard to contact every member of the General Assembly, and ask them to support the governors veto. You should all plan to be in Richmond next Wednesday, April 21, 2010 to meet your legislator and ask them to vote in favor of the governors amendments to the state budget. You should all write letters to your local newspaper and media supporting the governor. There will be a large effort to oppose the Governors amendments and only through our hard work can we protect our members.