FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 21, 2011
Cut Politicians' Perks to Fund Kids Reading
CLARKSDALE, MS — During tonight’s WLBT debate, Bill Luckett unveiled his plan
to fund programs like Reading is Fundamental.
“Career politicians who have been on the public payroll for decades don't deserve any
better retirement program than do our teachers, law enforcement and other state
employees,” Luckett said. “The game of climbing up the ladder of political offices
election after election looking for a ‘high four years’ pay grade before retirement is a
clear-cut example of why we need a governor who approaches the job as a public service,
not a career goal to insure a cushy retirement.”
As reported in the Clarion-Ledger on July 18, the Reading Is Fundamental program is in
danger of ending due to a lack of funding. Bill Luckett, candidate for governor, joins
those who fear cutting programs like these will continue keeping Mississippi’s children at
the bottom in education. However, the taxpayer money spent on career politicians’
special retirement accounts could help save programs like Reading Is Fundamental.
Luckett continued, "If I am elected governor, I’ll cut the SLRP program entirely. Career
politicians have no business getting a bigger retirement then our school teachers, law
enforcement and government employees. One year of SLRP could fund Reading Is
Fundamental. We should be investing in our children, not professional politicians."
Phil Bryant enjoys a preferential pension that 50% more rewarding than what state
employees get. The Supplemental Legislative Retirement Plan (SLRP) allows Bryant to
pay into PERS at a rate 50% higher than for regular employees. At the same time, the
state contributes to the SLRP at a rate 50 percent higher for legislators than it does for
regular state employees.