FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(BATON ROUGE, LA) - The Louisiana Constitution provides for a veto override session unless a majority of the House or Senate submit signatures in opposition to it. Twenty-six Louisiana Senators opposed to a veto-override legislative session to examine the vetoes made by Gov. Bobby Jindal submitted their signatures by the deadline July 16th Deadline.
One of the driving issues behind support for an override session was the Governor's veto of HB 42 by Rep. Sam Jones (D-Franklin), which provided for a fully funded cost of living adjustment (COLA) for retirees in the four state pension systems.
"Obviously, we are disappointed that the Senate could not muster the courage to stand up to this Governor, who has for too long disrespected and abused public servants." said Louis Reine, Louisiana AFL-CIO President and LPPC member. "In many parishes, public pension income is the number one source of income. This refusal to override the Governor hurts working families, and hurts our local businesses."
The COLA would have provided for an average of about thirty dollars a month increase for retirees and was fully funded through investment returns of the system that are already set aside for this purpose. The modest increase in income would not have begun to offset the increasing costs of retiree healthcare that has resulted from the Jindal Administration’s misuse of the $300 million surplus inside the Office of Group Benefits (OGB).
"Although we are disappointed, we look forward to better leadership on pension issues in the next administration. I know a lot of retirees will be looking very closely at the candidates for Governor this year." Reine said.