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July 18, 2014
When every single member of the conference committee denies being the legislator to add the amendment, C. B. Forgotston posts this priceless jab at the six (6) legislators using some, shall we say, colorful and thought-provoking language.
July 21, 2014
Upon uncovering the fact that the six legislators plan to lay all the blame on Sen. Neil Riser's staff attorney, Mr. Forgotston openly questions whether she's the culprit or the scapegoat.
Apparently "feeling the heat" from the controversy, Col. Edmonson agrees to appear on Jim Engster's show on WRKF public radio at 9:00 a.m. and answer questions posed to him by Mr. Engster and a few call-in radio listeners. Highlights:
Col. Edmonson initially responds to controvery.
Col. Edmonson expands his initial explanation of the controversy.
Col. Edmonson lambasts C. B. Forgotston and unnamed other bloggers
for "irresponsible reporting" regarding the whole issue.
Col Edmonson addresses speculation he may run for Lt. Governor in 2015.
Col. Edmonson answers a question posed by a school teacher
regarding whether she should obtain the same benefit to which
he has been bestowed.
Speaking before the Baton Rouge Press Club, Rep. John Bel Edwards, D-Amite (and candidate
for Louisiana Governor in 2015) addresses a question posed by Robert Burns regarding recent
statements that Rep. Edwards would request an investigation of the whole matter of SB-294's controversial amendment.
July 23, 2014
Robert Burns makes public records request to LSPRB Executive Director Irwin Felps, who responds within an hour in providing the November, 2008 minutes from the LSPRB meeting. Burns then highlights items in the minutes showing efforts to try and accomplish this same goal way back then. Reviewing those minutes provided considerable insight into the declining financial health of the LSP retirement system. Here are a few revelations:
1. The Unfunded Accrued Liability (UAL) of the system has risen from $199 million @ 6/30/08 to $323 million @ 6/30/14 (a 62% increase). It's interesting to note that the UAL of $199 million was at a time the stock market was tanking, whereas the $323 million UAL today exists despite the fact the stock market is hitting all-time highs. Note: This is not a reflection of poor performance by the system's investments but rather is a function of the State of Louisiana not funding its share of the system's contributions.
2. Based on an approximate 922 active troopers, the UAL @ 6/30/14 stands at approximately $350,000 per trooper.
3. To amortize the $350,000 per trooper UAL over 15 years @ a 7% annual return on system assets, the required annual contribution (combined by both trooper and state) would be approximately $38,000 per year per trooper.
4. When one board member asked Charles Hall, LSPRB actuary, during the November 2008 meeting, "if a trooper asks for advice on joining DROP, should I advise them to enroll or not?" Mr. Hall's response: "Not if they anticipate significant salary increases (stated to be 15% - 20%) during the next three years."
5. Col Edmonson was present to hear that statement, and he instantly realized that, since he enrolled in DROP 2 1/2 years previously, he'd experienced a 70% INCREASE in his salary. Consequently, he instantly knew in November of 2008 just what a mistake had been made in underestimating his future earnings. It would appear this whole scandal entails a covert mechanism for correcting that underestimate on Col. Edmonson's part.