Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville, R-Monroe, told reporters “Tell the Mackinac Center that, OK?” on Wednesday in announcing his support for legislation that would put public school teachers in Michigan hired after Jan. 1, 2013, into a defined-contribution 401(k)-style plan, according to The Detroit News.

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“It’s what most of the private sector is moving toward, it’s what the Legislature has,” Sen. Richardville told The News. “Just in general, we’re trying to correct promises that were made that couldn’t be kept by previous Legislatures.”

Sen. Mark Jansen, R-Grand Rapids, plans to offer an amendment to Senate Bill 1040 to make the change, The News reported.

The Legislature made the same decision in 1997 for state employees, which a 2011 Mackinac Center study found had saved taxpayers up to $4.3 billion in unfunded pension liabilities.

Sen. Richardville noted that there would be “upfront costs” involved with such a change.

James Hohman, assistant director of fiscal policy, addressed how the Legislature could confront those costs in this recent study.

You can read more about the issue here, here and here.

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