YOUR OPINION: Letter to the editor

By NEMS Daily Journal

People planned their lives based on promise
I would suggest that all who opine publically that PERS should cut or freeze promised cost of living increases should disclose their family income and retirement plans and benefits, especially PERS members. Although a contract is a contract, this disclosure might make arguments more or less credible and might imply more or less moral athority to provide their opinions.
Grit and cleaning up after elephants in the room are easier with money. In some ways many public employees in Mississippi are like indentured servants enduring low pay with long hours and limited benefits with the promise of a few carrots once reaching the promised land of retirement. In my opinion it would require a certain level of cruelty to interfere with or delay that promise.
People planned their entire careers, selected their specific retirement plans and dates, and selected their payout methods based upon these promised benefits. I acknowledge for me and my wife, the cost of living increases are luxuries (but well deserved and borne of hardship).
For most, however, the cost of living increases may allow presents at Christmas, the payment of property taxes, or the illusion of a livable income. The legislature has multiple means to handle any shortfall at PERS. I, for one, pledge that I will gladly sacrifice and provide my fair share in the form of any new taxes the state may impose to cover PERS and its promises.
Louis Masur III
PERS retiree

Click video to hear audio