Harrison has perspective that will benefit board
It is with great pleasure that I write this letter in support of Chris Harrison for the Decatur Park District Board.
I have known Harrison for many years and have always appreciated his honesty, integrity and straightforwardness. He loves Decatur and has chosen to raise his family here. He brings a youthful, yet wise, perspective for the future of our community and how the park district plays a part in it. He is financially savvy, with a realistic point of view.
Decatur so desperately needs more young people to step up and take an interest in our/their future. I am grateful to Harrison for doing so and encourage you to support him with your vote.
State could offer package to retirees to stay on the job
The state pension system shortfall can be better addressed by giving incentives for employees nearing retirement to remain on the job longer.
This can be accomplished by introducing an optional package to offer to potential retirees. The employee would be given the choice to retire as scheduled or voluntarily defer their retirement date by a minimum of three to five years or more, and the state would pay that employee 12 percent to 15 percent above their current salary through each of these additional years. In that case, the employee eventually would retire under the old formula without any further modification.
Is it not preferable to pay such employees thousands of dollars in incentive pay annually from the state revenue fund to remain on the job rather than tens of thousands of dollars of retirement pay annually from an underfunded pension system? Under this plan, the state can pay workers with many years of experience to remain on the job longer and, at the same time, preserve a highly trained and functional work force, all the while acknowledging their contribution to state government at a time when too many talented and skilled long-term employees have been running for the exits.
If only one in four potential retirees chose this incentive, the savings no doubt would be in the many millions of dollars.