The Senate Administration Committee voted out the TRS Sunset bill Wednesday afternoon (see more information on the bill here). The Senate sponsor of HB 1585, Sen. Eddie Lucio, laid out two amendments that he intends to introduce on the Senate floor that would relax some of the laws regarding employment after retirement – these are provisions that have been included in other bills as well.
One amendment would provide a “three strikes” penalty system when a retiree violates the return-to-work limitations on working more than half-time (if the retiree did not sit out a full 12 months prior to returning to work). Rather than requiring the retiree to pay back their TRS check for the relevant month, which is the only option available under current law, the system would first warn the retiree that they had violated the law; subsequent violations would result in financial penalties.
The second proposed amendment would provide that any retiree who retired prior to Jan. 1, 2021, could return to work up to full time without having to sit out the required 12-month period, without penalty.
Note that any relaxation of employment after retirement laws still requires that a retiree sit out at least a full calendar month after retirement before returning to work. Violation of this provision, which is in both state and federal law, causes a revocation of the retirement.
HB 1585 will next be considered by the full Senate.