ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — More than 1,000 Minnesota state employees opted for an early retirement program in the past nine months, saving the state an estimated $47 million over three years.

A Minnesota Management and Budget report obtained Monday by The Associated Press updates lawmakers on early retirements under a 2010 law offering extended health and dental coverage to workers with at least 15 years of state service.

The update comes as lawmakers consider reducing the state work force and curbing employee benefits to save more money.

The report says the early retirement perk went to 1,030 workers averaging almost 29 years of service. About 60 percent of their jobs were filled, while the rest were eliminated. About 40 percent of the early retirees gave up jobs in the Minnesota Department of Transportation.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (20)
  1. M B says:

    47 million over three years= 15.6 million a year across 1000 employees equals $15,666 pay a year for those employees.

    Yup, those public workers sure are overpaid… By the way, the sarcasm is free of charge….

    1. Jeremy Pettit says:

      That savings is the extra pay in benefits and eliminated positions.

    2. Harvey says:

      I take it you never paid for Cobra benefits. As the group would be older, their rates would be very high. It would be the population most likely to have medical issues. But don’t let a simple matter like thinking stop you from posting.

  2. Truhart says:

    More kicking the can down the road. This long term benefits will cost a lot more than the short term savings.

  3. Putz says:

    “40% were eliminated”. Boy, does that not tell the story of staffing in the public sector.

  4. garipi says:

    $47 mil is just the assumed savings between what they were making while working vs in early retirement…can’t be that dumb, can you?!?! This saving does not factor in the salary of any new hires to replace them…remember this is gov and no positions get eliminated permanently!

    1. Mike says:

      If you don’t like America then go live somewhere else. Move to Somalia! No taxes, unregulated business and no government. Everything you dream of……..

  5. Retired State Worker says:

    With the early retirements and more time on thier hands, we can assume 40% of this group will end up in Stillwater Prison costing an additional burden to MN taxpayers. They should be forced to move out fo state with the early retirement package. Crazy government.

  6. Murph says:

    After 29 years ,I would guess they have heard every dumb comments and jokes about shovel leaning and whatever about 30 thousand times! Taking skin thickener helps. Wait til you see what GOP and their cronies have in store for YOU! Hahahaha Have a good day!

  7. james says:

    Let’s see… We will be paying pensions and benefits for approximately 20 years if they live to be, say, 85, and, they get a guaranteed 8% return on that portion they paid in. Whew, I thought my taxes might go up again like in Minneapolis this year when we couldn’t afford to pay those pensions. But hey, the government spends what it takes, and the private sector spends what it makes. I hope they enjoy the good life while I work till 85 supporting them. That’s only fair, right?!?

    1. Kevin Sedlezky says:

      If you have to work until your 85 that’s because you were to stupid to get a good job and be able to start a 401k. Now your angry at those who went out and got a good job? Let me guess, I’ll be paying for your health care. Get a life trailer trash.

      1. nate says:

        The way things are now it’s damn hard to find a good job let alone one that offers a 401k. College degrees don’t guarantee a job anymore either. Plus with all those student loans and other bills, not everyone can afford to have money deducted from their paychecks to go towards any kind of savings. By the way Kevin you’re already paying for people’s healthcare – just so ya know.

    2. Zeke says:

      The current life expectancy for a male is 75 years for a male (as the story said it was DOT workers). Nice try.

  8. USMC 67-70 says:

    Dental too!! Yep the public sector really has it tough and they also want to rally for the middle class – most of the middle class workers in the private sector pay dearly for dental and then it is gone when they retire!

  9. Murph says:

    Public workers get the same pay as outside union workers get.They also get penalized already by either getting a 1/2 pension/1/2 social security retirement or pay extra to their city/state pension and get full reirement but then get only 1/2 of what they would have got from social security.You people are misinformed by ???????? who else but the GOP! That’s why you stupidly voted for them in the first place! You are actually getting some of the social security benefits these people lose at retirement.So go ahead and screach but…. you yourself are making money on the deal already and losing nothing but your common sense if you continue to believe otherwise! So enjoy the benefits I earned but cannot collect from social security it is my gift + some wisdom for you on the subject!

    1. J Fee says:

      SEIOUSLY? Average teacher makes $53,000 per year and their pension is free. Or according to your own site teachers have taken a reduced salary to help fund their own pension. I challenge any teacher to pay for their own retirement via a 401k. Can you save 1million dollars? The jig is up. From Indiana to wisconsin to new Jersey, we reject your argument. As for collective bargaining, Carter and Roosevelt were against public unions. Let’s see our union doen’t like a 0% raise. we want 5%. Thank God for collective bargaining so an arbitrator can meet in the middle. How much has your raise been over the last 3 years, because theprivate sector is continually making less and paying more for our benefits.

  10. Jon says:

    Murph,most of the anti- public worker crowd get their information from RUSH! Glad you set them straight! Rush just wants to get republicans elected at any cost,the truth doesn’t matter.

    1. Citizen says:

      @Jon. Rush just wants to make BIG money. $23 million a year at last count. He would sell just about anything to anyone for that price, whether or not he believed in what he said!! By the way people who sell out for money regardless of beliefs are called, what?

  11. And one says:

    For those of you who complain, join the military and stay in for 20 plus years. Problem solved, O yea, by the way I’m a Dem with over 25 yrs. of service. My health care starts in my 60’s, thank you taxpayers.

    1. Ow says:

      All those years of service, I hope reading the stupidity doesn’t kill you.

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