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CTA Provides Online Financial Tools For Educators CTA released a new investment and fi nancial planning education Web site,, to help educators with important investment strategies, including supplementing their retirement with 403(b) and 457 plans. This Web site was created exclusively for educators and includes information on CalSTRS and CalPERS, as well as helpful articles and fi nancial calculators. Don’t wait. Visit our new Web site today. Here’s a sampling of what you’ll  nd at    Calculators from Standard & Poor’s – 403(b) Planner and more Case studies – CTA member testimonials about 403(b) investing Financial and investment articles – More than 130 informative articles on CalSTRS and CalPERS, women’s retirement planning and 403(b) plans  Webinars – Interactive tutorials that walk you through fi nancial and investing concepts + PLUS:   Sign up for e-mail updates Read the “Educator’s Guide to 403(b) and 457 Plans” Initiatives filed attacking educator retiree benefits public employees have been filed with the Attorney General’s Office. Intended for the November 2010 ballot, the initiatives, sponsored by the California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility and former state Asssemblyman Keith Rich- man, are similar to the ones he filed in 2005. Like those in 2005, these initiatives attack the retire- ment benefits of teachers, police, nurses, firefighters and other pub- lic employees and do nothing to solve the current economic crisis. They are flawed, unnecessary and will make it harder to attract and retain quality teachers in our schools. They also completely overlook the fact that Wall Street excesses and corporate abuses are the real threat to retirement secu- rity for all Californians. The average public employee T retirement benefit is approxi- mately $4,300 per month after 29 years of service – and seven out of ten public employees receive re- tirement income of less than $30,000 a year. The initiatives are complicated and contain several different pro- visions. Most notably, they would reduce a teacher’s retirement by about 30 percent and create a two-tier retirement system. The initiatives would signifi- cantly hinder the ability of public employees – particularly teachers and those in the educational system – to retire at a reasonable age with an adequate retirement. Educators could not retire before age 62, with that number increasing for newer employees as the federal govern- ment increases Social Security age. In order to achieve the same standard of living in retirement, a teacher must receive approximately 34 California Educator | november 2009 wo initiatives that would undermine the secure retire- ment of educators and other 90 percent of what their final com- pensation was. The average re- placement ratio for a teacher retir- ing now in the CalSTRS system is 62 percent, which means members will have to have enough in savings – and would need to be lucky enough to have enough Social Se- curity earnings (made extremely difficult due to the federal offsets) – to make up the additional 20 per- cent needed to bring a member up to 80 percent. To make matters worse, an employee’s retirement salary will be limited to 75 percent of their final compensation. In addition to cutting teachers benefits significantly, the initia- tives would prevent non-full time teachers from receiving any re- tirement or retiree health bene- fits. This would have a significant impact on community colleges and part-time faculty. Finally, the plans create a two- tier system that would grandfa- ther current employee’s vested re- tirement and retiree health care into the existing system, but would make new employees in- eligible for retirement benefits until reaching five consecutive years as a full-time employee. These initiatives – both titled “New Public Employees Benefits Reform Act” – will soon be qual- ified for signature gathering. CTA encourages you not to sign these petitions. CTA is part of a broad coali- tion of labor organizations that includes, teachers, nurses, fire- fighters, police, correctional of- ficers and state workers, that is working together to protect the secure and fair retirement of public employees. The Educator will continue to keep you updated with the public retire- ment benefits situation as it unfolds.

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