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Georgia Shorts P/T Faculty on Retirement Benefits

Part-time workers have a hard time with benefits. Tom Hudson
hopped from job to job for years, trying to piece together a full-time paycheck from itinerant work as a part-time English professor. He paid little attention to his pay stubs while teaching at Athens Technical College in the 1990s, assuming some money went toward a Social Security account that would make retirement more comfortable.

He was wrong.

The state retirement plan that covered Hudson and a growing number of temporary Georgia workers provides no Social Security coverage. At best, critics say the plan Georgia created for temps in place of Social Security is a piggy bank dressed as a retirement plan.

At worst, they say it sets the state’s most vulnerable workers back
years in saving for old age.

“I look at the plan as an employment tax which I am forced to pay out of the already meager salary paid to part-time instructors,” said Nick Currie, a part-time teacher at Southern Polytechnic University in Marietta. Under the plan, called the Georgia Defined Contribution Plan (GDCP), the state transfers 7.5 percent of each part-timer’s paycheck into an investment fund with a small annual rate of return. The plan is no-frills:

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