Frequently Asked Questions
Equable has a fantastic new digital tool to help you better understand your retirement benefits and options. Knowledge is power, so the more educated you are about your benefits, the more comfortable you can make your retirement.
TRSL is managed by a Board of Trustees from seven regions across the state; there are also ten appointed members (either by virtue of their professional capacity or ex-officio by the House Speaker). The regional seats are up for election, on rotation, every year.
This information is sourced from leading national organizations that are experts in state pension systems, including: Bellwether Education, Pivot Learning, Reason Foundation, and Equable. These partners have done extensive research, publishing, and advocacy in states across the country, including Louisiana, Texas, California, and Michigan.
Schools and districts are responsible for the TRSL employer contribution AND the interest on the over $10 Billion debt. Those are precious dollars that are stripped away from the classrooms that need them most. All the while, equity and achievement gaps continue to widen for our most vulnerable students. To learn more about how pensions are squeezing classrooms, read The Big Squeeze from Pivot Learning.
We say no, it isn’t fair to teachers. Or students. Or schools and districts. For one thing, the enormous debt has a large interest payment that must be paid every year. This responsibility falls to districts and is siphoning off dollars from the classroom and a potential teacher pay raise. TRSL benefits are also “backloaded,” so only those employees who stay in the system 20+ years truly benefit. With the mobility of today’s workforce, that’s highly unlikely for those teachers just entering the system. Learn more by reading Bayou Blues: How LA’s Retirement Plan Hurts Teachers and Schools from Bellwether Education.
The primary cause is that, over the past two decades, TRSL has been significantly under-performing is projected rate of return (the amount of money the investments are supposed to make). In the last 20 years, the “unfunded liability” of TRSL has grown from just over $4 Billion to more than $10 Billion. Think of it as a credit card bill that never gets paid off, and grows over time, to the point where the debt is insurmountable. To learn more about what’s causing the debt to continue to grow, check out this analysis and report from the Reason Foundation.