Allen J. Barwick: Promise-breakers

July 3, 2013 


I am a retired N.C. state employee with 33 years of service. When I was hired in 1965, there were several “conditions of employment” that the state offered as incentives for joining the state. These were promises offered in exchange for coming to work with the state.

One of the promises was that parts of my pension package would not be taxed upon my retirement. Two items exempted from state taxation were distributions from my 457 deferred compensation plan and taxation of my Social Security benefits.

House Bill 998 will usher in taxing Social Security benefits. Passing of this law will result in a $1,700 increase in my taxes. This bill will also impact most retired citizens of the state.

Are the sponsors of this bill unaware of its consequences upon the retired citizenry of N.C.? Have members of our legislature forgotten the promises to prospective state employees when they were weighing their options to work with the state or go elsewhere for employment? Or, are they going to ignore promises made to retirees because it might be the expedient thing to do?

I urge the legislative groups debating House Bill 998 to reconsider and give serious thought to keeping prior promises and honoring “conditions of employment” that all parties swore to upon accepting jobs with the state.

Allen J. Barwick


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