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Burlison leads evaluation of Missouri pensions

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A group of legislators led by Sen. Eric Burlison, R-Battlefield, began evaluating the state’s retirement systems last month.

The Missouri Department of Transportation and Patrol Employee’s Retirement System Study Committee met for the first time July 25. According to a news release, the committee is charged with examining the Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System and the MoDOT and Patrol Employees’ Retirement System, two of Missouri’s state employee pension funds, to identify ways to save money, evaluate management and grow the funds.

“As a steward of taxpayer dollars, we have a responsibility to examine every opportunity to find savings. There are potential savings in these duplicative pension systems,” Burlison said, in the release. “While our state pensions have done a great job for their pensioners, I believe we can always do better.”

MOSERS, with $12.2 billion in assets, according to its latest financials, comprises a vast majority of state employees; and MPERS, with $2.4 billion in plan assets, according to its latest financials, belongs to MoDOT and the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

According to the release, this is not the first time members of the Missouri General Assembly have studied state pensions. In 2004, legislators evaluated Missouri’s pension systems and ultimately failed to make recommendations.

Burlison has called for different results.

“This is a great opportunity, and we cannot squander it,” he said.

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