We need fundamental reform of our pension system and we should show leadership by starting with the legislative pensions (for elected representatives and senators) by eliminating double dipping, capping pension payments, reducing the annual cost of living adjustments (COLA’s), and increasing the retirement age. Once the legislators have reformed themselves, they would have more strength to ask other groups to participate in reform. It is unfair to shift pension costs to suburban school districts. The legislature created the pension crisis by failing to meet its funding obligations. Shifting pension cost to suburban school districts will burden homeowners already paying exorbitant property taxes. However, if a local school district chooses to increase benefits for its employees above what the state mandates - and if they purposely manipulate the pension system (i.e. salary sweeteners / bumps shortly before retirement) - then it seems appropriate for them to cover the increased costs. As the minority spokesperson for the Senate Pension & Investments Committee, I have been a very vocal advocate fighting for fair and constitutionally accurate pension reforms since the day I took office.