2024 Legislation Bills to Watch
March 28, 2024
2024 Regular Legislative Session Final Update
June 4, 2024

Action Alert! Contact your Represenative about HB 800 / Constitutional Convention

Amendments to HB 800 by Representative Gerald “Beau” Beaullieu to protect the MFP (Education Funding) and Homestead Exemption give us the opportunity to lobby the House and add retirement to the amendments before it is debated next Tuesday, May 7.
Please contact your state representative and state Representative Beaullieu by email and phone urging them to include the protections of Article VII Section 9 and Article X Section 29 in the new constitution. Also ask your friends and relatives to contact their representatives as well.
Representative Beaullieu contact information:
P: (337) 373-4051
F: (337) 373-4053
Link to find your representative and senator: https://legisla.gov/legis/FindMyLegislators.aspx
Link to Representatives email addresses and phone numbers: https://house.louisiana.gov/H_Reps/H_Reps_FullInfo
As state employees and teachers, we contributed our share of every paycheck to our retirement systems. Our FUNDS should continue to be protected in a separate trust. When the 1974 Constitution was debated there was extensive discussion concerning retirement systems and benefits. The participants of that constitutional convention recognized that in order to attract and maintain employees, benefits needed to be assured because the state could not compete on salary.
Additionally, it was recognized that political decisions should not play a role in guaranteeing retirement benefits. Those were two of the reasons the protections were placed in the existing constitution. These protections must continue.
As retired employees we cannot afford to have our benefits reduced. Most of us do not qualify for Social Security and if we do it is offset by our federal government in the “Windfall Elimination Provision” (WEP) and the “Government Pension Offset” (GOP) provisions. We must continue to protect the existing protections in the state constitution!
Again, email and call your representative and Representative Beaullieu before Tuesday, May 7 and ask them to include the protections of Article VII Section 9 and Article X Section 29 in the new constitution.


Passage of Senate Bill 5 would severely restrict retirement investments resulting in new debt, a drop in funding levels, and fewer COLAs for state retirement systems


Here are some basic points on why we need to oppose SB 5:


  • TRSL is the largest public retirement system in the state with more than $26 billion in assets.


  • As a large institutional investor, TRSL invests in many different types of assets—fixed income, US and international equities, alternative assets and real estate.


  • TRSL’s portfolio is highly, highly diversified and designed to include assets with specific characteristics that add value in good and challenging market conditions.


  • TRSL hires investment fund managers to invest on its behalf in these asset classes with the number one goal of maximizing returns and minimizing risk.


  • It is through these externally managed funds that TRSL can achieve portfolio diversification and optimal returns.


  • Each fund can contain investment in hundreds of companies—large and small, established or brand new.


  • However, Sen. Blake Miguez has filed a bill that would significantly affect how the TRSL Board can invest system assets.


  • Specifically, it restricts what companies TRSL could invest with and imposes penalties for individuals/companies responsible for making investment decisions on the system’s behalf, if prohibited investments are made.


  • In its current form, the bill could potentially close off TRSL’s investment in well-known and respected U.S. companies and/or limit the System’s access to certain fund managers.


  • As fiduciaries of the trust, TRSL board members, investment advisors, and executive management bear the responsibility of acting at all times in the best interests of the system and its members.


  • Constraining the ability of the board and its managers to invest in funds/companies they believe will yield beneficial investment returns is concerning.


  • It threatens to weaken the authority of the Board in its role as fiduciary and it could have adverse impacts on future investment earnings which pay monthly retirement benefits and cost-of-living adjustments.