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Rick Scott's Plan for Police Pensions

By: Whitney Ray Email
By: Whitney Ray Email

Tallahassee, FL - In a video of Rick Scott on the campaign trail in October, responding to allegations that if elected he would cut retirement benefits.

"I've never said I would cut pension benefits for anyone; not state workers, not policemen, not firemen."

Scott goes on to say state workers should contribute to their pension plans…
"What we are going to have to require state workers to do, only state workers to do, is contribute a nominal sum to their retirement."

But most police officers aren't state workers. They work for local governments, but Scott's asking all to contribute. He also wants to cut their pensions by a third.

Right now a police officer can retire after 25 years and receive 75 percent of his or her salary. Under Scott's plan they'd have to work 37 years to get the same benefit.

Scott says his plan doesn't contradict his campaign promise.

Scott: It will be more like a 401K plan.
Reporter: But is your plan today different from what you were suggesting on the campaign trail?
Scott: No, No."

Five Florida law enforcement officers have been killed in the past two weeks. Officers see their retirement benefits as a small reward for the risk they take daily.

Another reasons police officers argue their retirement benefits should be kept in tact is their live expectancy. Officers live on average 66 years. That's nine less than the rest of us.

And if officers have to work longer their life expectancy will drop even more, and more of Florida's police force will be over the hill.

Scott says the changes he wants to make to the state pension plan are only to make it stronger so people can bank on having their benefits decades from now


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