January 31, 2020

Legislative Session
Day 9
Report Snapshot

Short Day for the House and Senate

HB 109, the TRS Bill from 2019, Resurrected for Committee Hearing on Tuesday 

Register for PAGE Day on Capitol Hill
Upcoming Schedule

Monday, Feb. 3 - Legislative Day 10

House Public Safety & Homeland Security, 1 p.m., 606 CLOB (hearing on bill seeking to increase penalties for drivers caught texting in school zones)

Senate Education and Youth Committee, 2 p.m., 307 CLOB

Tuesday, Feb. 4 - Legislative Day 11

House Retirement Committee, 2 p.m., 515 CLOB

Wednesday, Feb. 5 - Legislative Day 12

Thursday, Feb. 6 - Legislative Day 13
Short Day for the House and Senate

The House and Senate met briefly today for legislative day nine. The House did not take action on any legislation. The Senate agreed to the House substitute version of SB 117 by Sen. Ellis Black (R-Valdosta), which requires those buying retirement credit to pay full actuarial value. The House will reconvene at 1 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 3, while the Senate will begin at the traditional 10 a.m. start time.

-Josh Stephens
HB 109, the TRS Bill from 2019, Resurrected for Committee Hearing on Tuesday

HB 109 by Rep. Tommy Benton (R-Jefferson) will be heard in the House Retirement Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 4 at 2:00 p.m. The version of HB 109 discussed during the 2019 sessions included the provisions below:

  • Change the calculation in determining “average final compensation” to the five highest consecutive years of an educator’s salary. For current members, the calculation is based on the two highest years of salary.

  • Lower the maximum earnable compensation that can be used in the determination of retirement benefits to $200,000 with an escalator for inflation. The limit for current TRS members is $280,000.

  • Set a new range of 5 - 8.5 percent for mandatory employee contributions to TRS. The percentage would be determined annually by the TRS board and would reflect “needs of the fiscal state of the retirement system.” The employee contribution range for current members is 5 - 6 percent.

  • Implement a "rule of 85," meaning that years of experience and age must total 85 years in order to retire.

  • Eliminate the opportunity for educators to use unused sick leave toward retirement credit.

  • Eliminate the right for teachers to retire in advance of the start of the school year when they achieve their 30 years of service by Dec. 31 of that school year.

  • Limit the salary increases used to determine TRS benefits from the highest five years of compensation to the highest two years of compensation.

PAGE expects that the version of HB 109 to be heard in committee on Tuesday will contain changes to the provisions above.  

-Josh Stephens
Register for PAGE Day on Capitol Hill

PAGE Day on Capitol Hill is Tuesday, Feb. 18. We’re pleased to partner with the Georgia Association of Educational Leaders (GAEL) and the Georgia Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (GACTE) again this year. Attendees will meet other politically minded educators from across the state and advocate for teachers and students under the Gold Dome. Please make your plans to attend and register HERE.

Claire Suggs
Senior Education Policy Analyst
Josh Stephens
Legislative Affairs Specialist
Margaret Ciccarelli
Director of Legislative Services