Governor signs Jones’ bill to protect retired state employees and save money

LANSING—Legislation sponsored by Sen. Rick Jones was signed by the governor on Tuesday. The new law allows retired state employees to help aid the attorney general’s office in litigation without forfeiting their retirement pay and benefits.

“It is important for taxpayers to know that this is for specific and temporary situations and does not allow retired state employees to double-dip,” said Jones, R-Grand Ledge. “This is about addressing rare cases where retired state employees with knowledge and details specific to the issue are contracted by the attorney general for a limited amount of time.

“I want to thank the governor for signing this common sense, cost-effective approach to helping the attorney general’s office do its job on behalf of the people of Michigan.”

Michigan law prohibits these retirees from receiving their retirement pay while under contract. Senate Bill 12, now Public Act 20 of 2015, amends the State Employees’ Retirement Act to allow a state retiree to be an independent contractor of the attorney general as a witness, expert, or consultant for litigation involving the state. PA 20 requires that a contract must include that the retiree’s service as a witness, expert, or consultant ends at the conclusion of the litigation.

Visit the Michigan Legislature website to read the full text of the bill.