A 2012 bill that would allow retired police officers to work as school security officers and still keep pension benefits will get another chance to become law this January, but amid fears of double-dipping and stunting job creation, its creators say they expect the measure to be dead-on-arrival, according to an article from Watchdog.org.
The bill, HB 208, seeks to create an exemption in the Virginia Retirement System’s rules to allow school boards to hire retired police officers as full-time security guards while retirees simultaneously collect pension benefits, the article says. The bill was designed to help provide experienced security personnel in Virginia schools, according to the measure’s sponsors.
The bill was moved to the 2013 General Session by the House Committee on Appropriations, and the speculation is that the bill will never make it out of committee in January, under the reasoning that lawmakers feel the measure would take a job away from other candidates and give it to someone already covered by the retirement system.
Another problem is the added liability accrued by the Virginia Retirement System to service the retired officers, who would be actively employed again.
The following are excerpts from the Watchdog.org article on the topic:
Current VRS rules allow retired officers to work part-time as school security and still receive pension benefits, which include a calculated portion of the officer’s final salary and medical coverage. HB 208 would allow officers to collect a fulltime salary as security guards and keep their benefits, provided they were at least 50 years old and have been receiving benefits for a minimum of one year.
A similar bill, sponsored by Sen. George Barker, D-Alexandria, passed unanimously in Senate on Feb. 6, but it too stalled in the House committee.