Sen. Nancy Collins (R-Tupelo) hopes PERS bill will start conversation

Sen. Nancy Collins, R-Tupelo, said her goal in introducing legislation that would freeze the cost of living adjustment for three years for state and local government retirees is to start a conversation about the long-term sustainability of the Public Employees Retirement System.

“This is the elephant in the room,” Collins said. “We have to do the hard things … We have to find ways to make the program sustainable for the 20- and 30-year-olds who are out there now.”

In recent years, various groups have expressed concerns about PERS, which covers employees in state and local government, local school districts, community colleges and universities.

The system has 58 percent of the funds needed to cover its liabilities over a 30-year period. The desired industry average is 80 percent.

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