The Michigan Education Association protested in Lansing yesterday to demand more taxpayer money for the public school system and to protest recent public school pension reforms. But the pension reforms will allow districts to have more resources to devote to improving education.

Recently passed pension reforms require employees to contribute an additional 3 percent to the cost of their own retirement. Taxpayers are still required to add the other 16 percent of this benefit. The law doesn't require these contributions to be used for lowering the "employer contribution," but that's how officials chose to administer it this year. This decrease in the employer, or school district, contribution is the equivalent of a 2.6 percent increase in the minimum foundation allowance, a hefty amount considering the poor state of the economy.


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