I am a retired teacher who one would consider a double dipper.

After 28 years in the classroom, my teacher’s pension is about $20,000 per year, from which $4,000 is taken out for health insurance. What’s left now puts me at the national poverty level.

Although I now have worked for 10 years in the private sector, I will not receive my full benefit of Social Security for the 40 quarters that I have worked outside of teaching. Maine is one of two states that have an offset tax, which penalizes teachers who have a large pension (remember, I am at the poverty level).

When I called Social Security, I was told that I might be eligible for $250 per month from working the additional 10 years. So sad.

I work to pay my medical insurance and to put a little aside to cover inflation, rising taxes and insurance for when I fully retire in two years. If I had taught in another state, I would receive my full benefit as well as a larger pension. To Maine’s future teachers I say, “Beware, fight to get rid of Maine’s offset tax or you will be in the same boat as the rest of us.”

Elizabeth Lindsay


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