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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