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McGinnis Rejects Pension Reform Bill, Says Fails to Address Mounting Debt
HARRISBURG – Rep. John McGinnis (R-Blair) today voted against legislation that would reform Pennsylvania’s two public pension systems. The House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 1 by a vote of 143-53 and sent it to Gov. Tom Wolf, who is expected to sign the measure into law next week.

McGinnis said he could not support the legislation because it fails to adequately address the growing unfunded liabilities of the State Employees’ Retirement System (SERS) and the Public School Employees’ Retirement System (PSERS), which currently stand at more than $70 billion.

McGinnis issued the following statement regarding his opposition to Senate Bill 1:

“Pension debt is the sole reason for doing pension reform and yet, ironically and bizarrely, the existing unfunded liabilities of SERS and PSERS are the only things not addressed in Senate Bill 1, our so-called pension reform product.

“Our approach in dealing with a massive debt problem is to let it ride and let it get more massive.

We continue to think that by changing the design of retirement plans for future employees, we are somehow going to see the unfunded liabilities disappear.

“This bill is so internally inconsistent, it can actually make the current situation worse. Give credit where credit is due: When it comes to figuring out how not to do the right thing for taxpayers on pension reform, we have always been pretty clever in this building and history was repeated today.

“I predict that in the near future we will see additional downgrades for the Commonwealth’s credit rating. The credit rating agencies have been pretty clear that what concerns them is proper funding and proper management of liabilities, and there is nothing in Senate Bill 1 to stop things from getting worse in Pennsylvania.

“To the taxpayers of Pennsylvania, I apologize. You deserve better, much better. You deserve to have legislation that actually fixes the existing problem, and you and your children and your grandchildren deserve to be free of the massive yoke of debt we continue to grow. I am truly sorry for our dereliction.”

To read McGinnis’ entire statement, which he delivered in the House chamber, visit this page or watch the video here.

Representative John McGinnis
79th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Andy Briggs
717.260.6474 /

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