How Do You “Mediate” A State Law?

… that, slightly rephrased, was the reaction via Twitter last night of John Ward to the news that

Superior Court Judge Sarah Taft-Carter on Tuesday ordered the state and the coalition of public employee unions challenging the General Assembly’s overhaul of their retirement system to meet with federal mediators and see if a settlement can be reached before the case moves to trial.

In the above ProJo article, reporter Tom Mooney also alludes to Ward’s important point, albeit in a somewhat understated manner.

What’s in dispute is the constitutionality of a law, a question usually left to a judge to decide.

Also on Twitter:
> Anchor Rising’s Andrew Morse spotted the larger, potential silver lining of such an approach.

If I don’t like how a law impacts me, can I also get a judge to order Federal mediators to negotiate changing it?

> Justin Katz points to what is undoubtedly a complete side issue to the ruling.

So an RI judge w/ 3 living family generations in the state pension system gave unions another bite at the apple to undo reform? Surprising!

> And Jason Becker goes to the root of the lawsuit, if not the ruling.

I’m just, surprised no one seems to talk about the fact that this isn’t about process as much as increasing benefits again.

Indeed – increasing the benefits from pension reform that was wholly inadequate to begin with, in large part because the original pensions were exceedingly, patently unaffordable to begin with.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
8 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Phil Hirons, Jr.
Phil Hirons, Jr.
8 years ago

Ordering mediation in this case is cowardly. The timeframe seems designed for the GA to reconsider the law. An other kick of the can.

KenW
KenW
8 years ago

Monique,
You said the following:
“Indeed – increasing the benefits from pension reform that was wholly inadequate to begin with, in large part because the original pensions were exceedingly, patently unaffordable to begin with.”
I worked 17 years for the State of Rhode Island. I had to retire early due to my wife’s health conditions and eventually move to Hawaii to fulfill her dying wish. She died a very happy lady.
I waited to collect my State of RI retirement till I turned age 65. My retirement income is $1,084.00 a month with $987.66 net after RI and federal taxes per month.
Would you please explain to me how you determine $1,084.00 a month retirement income is “exceedingly, patently unaffordable to begin with”

Max D
Max D
8 years ago

KenW,
Why do you pay Rhode Island state income tax when you live in Hawaii?

Debra
Debra
8 years ago

We moved in 11. Barrington – then -faced a $2.5MM bill to keep up with plan expenses ( it was held up when Raimundo plan came thru). That was our town, don’t know whats coming for other towns, even Barrington, now but its going to be financial apocalypse.
I cannot believe RI residents, tax payers with their/ our measly little 401-ks and lack of healthcare, do not comprehend that the money has to come from them.
We are SO so happy to have left. If Chafee, Casper Milquetoast that he is, caves, its game over. For RI. For good. You cannot crawl out from under the huge mill stone of paying those juicy pensions, good bye schools, roads, and to any younger police and fire who will never live to see what the entiltled few have extracted from all

KenW
KenW
8 years ago

Max D,
Because under RI State law, if I have an income that is created in the State of RI I must pay RI state income tax on only that income utilizing a RI-1040NR (Non-resident) form.
I’ve been through a lot of tax consultants and they all come back with the same answer because of the way the RI law is written. I must pay taxes on the RI income.
One of the largest tax scoff laws according to the RI tax list was a gentleman (NOT ME) that lives in Hawaii.
So the misinformation that if you move out of RI to a state with no state income tax or a state that exempts certain retirement incomes so you do not have to pay RI income tax on retirement income from RI is false!
RI has RI-1040NR form to capture your retirement income. Two things are certain in life; RI taxes and death!

Max d
Max d
8 years ago

Debra,
We already had one of the highest state debts per capita (if not the highest) in the country and yet we rubber stamped another $300 million in borrowing in the last election. CLUELESS is the word that comes to mind.

Mike
Mike
8 years ago

Not clueless, Max–they act the way the RI system has taught them to act and has consistently rewarded them for doing so. Do your beat your dog for sitting when you tell it to sit?

Show your support for Anchor Rising with a 25-cent-per-day subscription.