Legislative Information Committee

Cindy Spanyers, Director


The Legislative Information Committee monitors pending legislation that might affect retirees in the PERS, TRS and JRS retirement systems, updating the Executive Board on a regular basis.

 



How will a government shutdown impact retirees?

The Office of Management and Budget produced a ten-page report listing how a potential shutdown will impact various state services including those to retirees and seniors.

Fully Operational:

The Division of Treasury Investment Management Staff (Department of Revenue).
Pioneer Homes (Department of Health and Social Services).
Disability Determination for Social Security Benefits (Department of Labor).

Partial Shutdown/Reduced Staffing:

Office of Administrative Hearings only for child support, Medicaid, and public assistance (Department of Administration).
Division of Retirement and Benefits (Department of Administration).
Division of Motor Vehicles Functions (Department of Administration).
Bureau of Vital Statistics (Department of Health and Social Services).
Alaska Retirement Management Board (Department of Revenue).

Shutdown:

Senior Residential Services (Department of Health and Social Services).
Senior Benefits Payment Program (Department of Health and Social Services).

For the complete list, see the following link to the document submitted to the House Finance Committee on Thursday:
http://www.akleg.gov/basis/get_documents.asp?session=32&docid=37220

On Wednesday, the Governor introduced new budget legislation (HB 2001 and SB 2001). House Speaker Stutes also introduced HB 2002 specifying July 1, 2021 as the effective date for the operating budget passed earlier this month. There are no committee hearings scheduled for next week but both bodies are scheduled to go into session on Monday.

The House Ways and Means Committee is scheduled to meet on Tuesday, July 13th at 1:00 p.m. to hear a review of Alaska's revenue including sources and tax exemptions by the Department of Revenue.

For the most up to date information on hearings and the floor calendars, go to akleg.gov.

 



At the beginning of 2021, Legislative Finance and Legislative Research collaborated on an extensive informational paper on Alaska’s Public Retirement Systems. The paper outlines the history of PERS and TRS since statehood, including the Constitutional protections in Article XII, Section 7. It also delves into the escalating unfunded liabilities at a time when managing payments is becoming increasingly challenging in the present fiscal environment.

In FY21, the state contributed $345.6 million into the funds, approximately 7% of the unrestricted general funds. What are the options for ensuring our pensions are secure?

Here is the link to this important document:
Legislative Informational Paper 21-2 — Alaska's Public Retirement System