CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Retired public employees and teachers will be at the State Capitol on Thursday morning, pushing for two pieces of legislation that those with the Coalition of Retired Public Employees say are long overdue.

“It’s a matter of priorities,” said Ernie “Spud” Terry, CORPE spokesperson, who was helping organize the annual event to build support for the group’s legislative causes.

Again this year, group members are asking lawmakers to make tax exemptions for all public employees the same.  Currently, some state retirees receive full income tax exemptions for their pensions.  Those under the public employee retirement program and the teachers retirement systems receive a $2,000 exemption that ends at age 65.

Additionally, CORPE is calling on lawmakers to approve a three percent pension increase for retirees who had not yet reached the required age of 70 when the last approved cost-of-living pension increase took effect back in 2006.

Terry said the proposals would add up to little in the state budget, but translate to a lot for the individual retirees.  “We just can’t understand why we can’t even get a nod and a wink or a mention,” he told MetroNews.

“We look at things like the $80 million tax break that they give to the horse breeders and the horse racing, but we can’t get a few million for the folks who really need it.”

The CORPE legislative rally was scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. Thursday in the Capitol Food Court.  Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, members of the Board of Public Works and lawmakers were invited to speak to retirees.

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Comments

  • James

    When you retired at 55 you knew you a fixed pension. You had the opportunity to continue working or get a second career to plan for your retirement. The fact thay you chose to retire on a fixed income and never made any plans to supplement does not become a problem for the public at large. You were never promised a pension increase, and were told it was a fixed retirement plan. If you want to lobby for the exemption that is okay. Treatment should be equitqable for state employees, not favor to thise with the best lobbby and allowed to hold seats in the Legislature, i.e school teachers. County employees but whose pay is tied to the Legislature for which they are allowed to be memebers. Don't whine about the fixed pension. You got what you were promised and you didn't plan for your future.

  • John

    I moved to WVa in 1971. At that time teachers were complaining about the state being ranked near the bottom in teacher pay when compared to other states. 43 years later that whining still goes on. Now it's moved to retirement.

  • Wowbagger

    Legislators have no problem increasing the minimum wage, but no pension increases for retirees.

    Increasing the minimum wage causes inflation that erodes retiree`s pensions.

  • Aaron

    My suggestion would be to eliminate the $8 million tax brightness going to the horsebreeders or whoever else is give-and-take and apply that money to the budget deficit or two infrastructures funding.