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Retired State Employee, Double Dipping

February 26th, 2008 by flanews

More than 8,000 state employees are double dipping. Because of a loop hole in state law, retired state employees can seek government jobs and still get pension pay. As Whitney Ray tells us when it comes to fixing the law, state leaders dont see eye to eye.

Hear it here: Retired State Employee, Double Dipping

Nearly 8,000 state employees go home each night with a smile on their face. They are collecting retirement benefits and a pay check at the same time. The four year old loop-hole has allowed employees to rack up three hundred million dollars in state pensions, while receiving their normal pay. Governor Charlie Crist said the law needs to be fixed.

I think its something that ought to be looked at. I think I have a duty and obligation to always review, those kinds of things, said Crist.

Former House Clerk John Phelps has collected 350,000 dollars in retirement benefits since 2000. This year his legislative salary will pay him 138,000 dollars. While Governor Crist says the loop-hole should be fixed, CFO Alex Sink said the salaries would have to be paid regardless.

The reports about expenditures are not quit accurate because we would be employing people to fill those jobs and paying those salaries whether its somebody who has retired or not, thats not really an incremental cost to the state, said Sink.

Sink said the double dipping problem is being blown out of proportion. In many cases, state retirees who return to work actually cost the state less than a new employee, because the state is no longer contributing to their retirement account. Of the 8,000 state employees taking advantage of the loophole, more than 200 are elected officials.

Posted in Charlie Crist, State News | 1 Comment »

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