St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) - The Minnesota Senate debated how far the state should go to help Duluth teachers and their ailing retirement fund.
The measure would consolidate the Duluth Teachers Retirement Fund Association into the statewide Teachers Retirement Association.
The state would provide $15 million per year to bring Duluth into the statewide program.
The debate, at times, was heated.
"This is a bailout," said Sen. Julianne Ortman (R-Chanhassen). "Why should taxpayers in the state of Minnesota be the guarantors of the Duluth pension program for teachers or St. Paul? Why should they be? Where is all this money going?
"The Teacher fund consolidation continues the long time trend of consolidation standalone funds to stabilize them and make the funds more sustainable," said Sen. Sandy Pappas (DFL-St. Paul).
The Senate approved the plan, which is a major provision of the omnibus pension bill.
The same measure got the OK from the Minnesota House in April.