Sunday, February 13, 2005

Social Security Reform

All state employees must contribute to a retirment fund - here in PA, it is called SERS. You have no choice, the percentage is about 6.5% of your annual salary, and the money is taken out of your paycheck before taxes. I was shocked when I received my first pay statement, but I appreciate the long-term benefits. Another program offerend to state employees is a supplemental retirement program. Through this program, you can invest up to an additional 25% of your income to a retirement account, which you then determine how you want it invested. Sound familiar? It should - it is similar to the privatization plan President Bush is stumping for. It is a great idea - as a state employee, I have a retirement fund that is guaranteed for my retirement. Then, I have another plan that I can choose to invest money in, and invest it either safely, with little return, or in more riskier ventures, with a higher return. I look forward to taking advantage of it some time in the next year or two. There is no good reason not to do this with social security - especially if only 4% of your contributions will be privately invested, and the rest would go into the system, this is a very easy way to get our toes wet. You don't think all the hullaballoo is because some people don't think you should be able to do what you want with your own money, do you?