Bingman creates Select Committee on pensions

CapitolBeatOK Staff Report

Published: 18-Dec-2010

President Pro Tempore-Designate Brian Bingman announced the creation of a Select Committee on Pensions Friday (December 17).  Sen. Mike Mazzei, a Bixby Republican, will serve as Chairman of the committee and Sen. Don Barrington, a Lawton Republican, will serve as Vice Chairman.

“We have promises to uphold to retired teachers and workers in Oklahoma and we also have a duty to ensure sound fiscal security for our state’s future,” stated Bingman. “We can do both, but it will take a team effort and I am confident that these committee members will work together in a way that makes Oklahoma’s future more secure.”

Oklahoma’s pension systems have unfunded liabilities that amount to over $16 billion dollars. Fixing that problem will show the world that Oklahoma is ahead of the curve and a great place to make an investment, Bingman said.

Sen. Mazzei said, “The Legislature will face difficult fiscal challenges in the upcoming session, but that is no reason to pass tough decisions on to the next generation. We are striving to make Oklahoma a more competitive place to live, work and retire. Key to these efforts will be important reforms to shore up our significantly unfunded pension systems to secure retirement for our hardworking state employees and avoid massive budget problems in the future.”  

In addition to Mazzei and Barrington, members of the Select Committee on Pensions are: Sen. Patrick Anderson, R-Enid; Sen. Brian Crain, R-Tulsa; Sen. John Ford, R-Bartlesville; Sen. Bill Brown, R-Broken Arrow; Sen. Judy Eason McIntyre, D-Tulsa; Sen. Sean Burrage, D-Claremore; Sen. Susan Paddack, D-Ada; and Sen. John Sparks, D-Norman.