Perry's 'Retirement' Boosts Pay $92K

Texas governor officially retires to collect extra state benefits
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 17, 2011 6:34 AM CST
Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks during a campaign stop at the Copper Cup Coffee Shop in Cherokee, Iowa.   (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

(Newser) – Rick Perry may hate entitlement programs and government largess, but that didn't stop him from taking advantage of Texas' state law to "retire" last January—and thereby boost his salary by more than $92,400 to $240,000 annually, reports the Texas Tribune. Texas' "rule of 80" allows people to retire when their age plus military service plus state service equals 80 years. Perry qualifies, even though he is still working as governor; in fact, as Perry is still paying into the state's retirement system, his pension will continue to climb.

"That’s been in place for decades. ... I don’t find that to be out of the ordinary," said Perry about his retirement benefits, which came to light yesterday in new ethics disclosures. "I think you would be rather foolish to not access what you’ve earned." Perry's campaign had tried to delay filing the documents with the FCC twice, but had to submit them on Thursday. (Read more Rick Perry stories.)

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