ALEC Honors Oklahoma Representative Randy McDaniel as 2015 Legislator of the Year
In 2014, Oklahoma policymakers took a bold step to secure the financial future for current and future state employees. Those leaders passed a reform package that transitioned the state away from the antiquated and financially unsustainable defined-benefit pension system to a fiscally sound defined-contribution system.
States around the country are continuing to see increases in unfunded pension liabilities that make budgeting and planning for the future much more difficult. Worst of all, in municipalities that have gone bankrupt due to these massive debts, retirees have often been forced to accept lower pension payments. By switching to the defined-contribution pension system, which functions similar to the 401(k) plans that are commonplace in the private sector, Sooner State retirees and current employees can rest assured that their financial future is secure.
Under the pension reform package, Oklahoma’s defined-contribution system will affect all new state employees hired on or after November 1, 2015. The plan maintains the current defined-benefit system for teachers and hazard duty employees.
A major proponent and co-author of the reform plan, Representative Randy McDaniel, was recently awarded the prestigious Legislator of the Year award at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council. By working to pass a reform that puts the well-being of Oklahoma state employees and citizens first, McDaniel exemplifies the best characteristics that public servants have to offer.
ALEC congratulates Representative McDaniel for his service to Oklahomans and encourages states to learn from this example.
To read more about public pension reform options, check out the Keeping the Promise: State Solutions to Government Pension Reform publication from the Center for State Fiscal Reform at the American Legislative Exchange Council.