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REPRESENTATIVE ANDREW JOSEPHSON

(907) 465-4939 | State Capitol Building, Room 502 | WEBSITE
  PDF IconStatement PDF  | Sponsor's BILL Listing

Sponsor    Statement

Sponsor Statement for House Bill 55

HB 55 aims to create a new hybrid retirement plan option for state and municipal peace officers and firefighters under the Alaska Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS) with new protections for the state against unforeseen future liabilities.

Alaska ended the defined benefit plan in 2006 after we discovered that those accounts were too underfunded to meet anticipated retiree obligations. Since these plans were eliminated, one of Alaska’s greatest public safety challenges has become employee retention and recruitment. Alaska is one of the few jurisdictions that does not presently offer a defined benefit type retirement for new public safety employees. Additionally, many municipal public employees do not participate in Social Security or the Supplemental Annuity Plan (SBS-AP). HB 55 is crafted to retain and attract quality peace officers and firefighters while protecting the state from unnecessary financial risks in the future.

The proposed option would allow future peace officers and firefighters under the PERS system and current ones under the PERS Tier IV plan to join the defined benefit plan. The proposal includes several safeguards modeled after the most fiscally responsible plans in the nation. These safeguards provide stability and would provide the state with fiscal certainty about their ability to maintain adequate funding for this plan into the future. These provisions include a minimum retirement age of 55 with 20 years of service, flexibility setting employee contribution rates, minimum 12 percent employer contribution rates, mechanisms to prevent costly "pension spiking,” and the ability to withhold post-pension retirement adjustments should the plan's funding drop below 90 percent.

The new tier will closely mirror Tier III of PERS for public safety employees, with the exception of two cost saving measures: the continued inclusion of the Tier IV defined contribution retirement plan's health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) and the absence of cost-of-living adjustments.<.p>

HB 55 will be a step toward making Alaska more attractive to public safety employees. The nature of the jobs that peace officers and firefighters hold are uniquely physically demanding and hazardous compared to other public employees, and all Alaskans pay the cost for understaffed public safety agencies.


 
[signed]
REPRESENTATIVE ANDREW JOSEPHSON

SPONSOR STATEMENTS from Alaska House Majority Coalition

An Act relating to the Funter Bay marine park unit of the state park system; relating to protection of the social and historical significance of the Unangax cemetery located in Funter Bay and providing for the amendment of the management plan for the Funter Bay marine park unit; and providing for an effective date.

From the office of Representative Hannan


House Bill 104: Motor Fuels Tax

From the office of Representative Josephson


HB 110 – Electronic Smoking Products Excise Tax

From the office of Representative Hannan


House Bill 115 – Renewal or extension of aquatic farming and aquatic plant and shellfish hatchery site leases and requiring a report to the legislature.

From the office of Representative Story


House Bill 123 – An Act Providing for State Recognition of Federally Recognized Tribes

From the office of Representative Zulkosky


Sectional Analysis HB 128 Version A

From the office of Representative Fields


House Bill 155 – Court System Provide Visitors & Experts

From the office of Representative Tuck


House Bill 162 – Fisheries Rehabilitation Permits

From the office of Representative Tuck


House Bill 164 – Early Ed Programs; Reading; Virtual Ed

From the office of Representative Tuck


House Bill 218 – “Smoke/Fire Dampers & Smoke Control Systems”

From the office of Representative Tuck


An Act relating to shared ownership; and relating to the sharing and sale of raw milk and raw milk products.

From the office of Representative Tarr


An Act relating to the Public Employees' Retirement System of Alaska

From the office of Representative Hopkins


An Act relating to public school funding for social and emotional learning; and providing for an effective date

From the office of Representative Hopkins


Sponsor Statement HB 26 version A

From the office of Representative Tarr


Sponsor Statement HB 27 v. A
An Act naming the irene Webber Bridge.

From the office of Representative Stutes


Sponsor Statement for House Bill 30

From the office of Representative Josephson


Observe Daylight Saving Time All Year

From the office of Representative Stutes


Shellfish Enhancement Projects; Hatcheries; Fees

From the office of Representative Ortiz


Special Education Service Agency – Sunset Extension

From the office of Representative Story


Sponsor Statement for House Bill 45

From the office of Representative Josephson


House Bill 47– Renaming the Alaska Native Language Preservation and Advisory Council as the Council for Alaska Native Languages; and relating to the Council for Alaska Native Languages

From the office of Representative Story


An Act relating to sexual abuse of a minor; relating to sexual assault; relating to the code of military justice; relating to consent; relating to the testing of sexual assault examination kits; and providing for an effective date.

From the office of Representative Tarr


An Act establishing the Alaska Invasive Species Council in the Department of Fish and Game; relating to management of invasive species; relating to invasive species management decals; and providing for an effective date.

From the office of Representative Tarr


Sponsor Statement for House Bill 55

From the office of Representative Josephson


Sponsor Statement for House Bill 57

From the office of Representative Josephson


Sponsor Statement House Bill 63

From the office of Representative Stutes


An Act relating to regional fisheries development associations; and related to developing fishery management assessments

From the office of Representative Stutes


Elections, Voting, Ballots

From the office of Representative Tuck


Prohibition of Conversion Therapy on Youth and Vulnerable Adults

From the office of Representative Hannan


HB 9—The Education Funding Act

From the office of Representative Hannan


House Bill 90 Sponsor Statement Version A Rental vehicles; Vehicle rental networks; Vehicle rental taxes

From the office of Representative Wool


An Act relating to the State Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy Board; relating to the practice of physical therapy; and relating to the practice of occupational therapy.

From the office of Representative Claman