House Pension Commission Members Finally Named

Minnesota Speaker of the House Kurt Zellers (R-Maple Grove) announced yesterday that the House members of the 2011-2012 Legislative Commission on Pensions and Retirement (LCPR) will be Republicans Mary Kiffmeyer (R-Big Lake), Morrie Lanning (R-Moorhead), and Steve Smith (R-Mound).  House Democrats will have two representatives on the Commission, Phyllis Kahn (DFL-Minneapolis) and Mary Murphy (DFL-Hermantown).

Senate members are Republicans Roger Chamberlain (R-Lino Lakes), Ted Daley (R-Eagan) and Julie Rosen (R-Fairmont).  Democrat appointees are Sandy Pappas (D-St. Paul) and Lawrence Pogemiller (D-Minneapolis).

The Senate appointed their members weeks ago and have already held a hearing on one controversial pension reform bill, SF 813, which would have shifted much of the burden of financing pensions from the taxpayer to the employees who receive the benefits.

Four members – Chamberlain, Daley, Kiffmeyer and Lanning are new to the Commission, which oversees the more than $50 billion Minnesota state and local government pension system.  Kiffmeyer has served as Minnesota’s Secretary of State, and as such was a member of the State Board of Investment, the body that oversees pension fund investments.

Smith, Pogemiller and Murphy have all served as chair in past sessions.  This year it’s the House’s turn to chair the Commission.   The Commission will hold an organizational meeting on Friday, April 8.