Oklahoma House committee passes measure that would protect pension funds

Oklahoma House Joint Resolution 1027 would let voters decide whether to place stronger pension protections in the Oklahoma Constitution. The measure passed through committee Wednesday and now heads to the House.
BY MICHAEL MCNUTT mmcnutt@opubco.com Modified: February 6, 2013 at 9:57 pm •  Published: February 6, 2013

If HJR 1027 is approved by the Legislature and voters support it, the constitutional amendment would make the law permanent, McDaniel said.

Other provisions

Another provision would prohibit raiding the pension funds for other purposes.

“We are saying you can't have a prohibitive practice of moving money from the pension systems to pay for roads and bridges or something else,” he said.

The measure also would require that legislators obtain an actuarial investigation before passing laws designed to increase public pension benefits and costs.

It also would require that all state retirement plan investments be made according to the prudent investor rule, with well-diversified, professionally managed portfolios to minimize risk.

“This is a good idea today and it's a good idea for the future of the state,” McDaniel said.

The state's six major pension systems fund retirement pay for retired state employees, teachers, firefighters, police, law enforcement officers and judges.