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Letter: Teachers' benefits are too generous

Teacher pension costs will drop significantly next year,

Teacher pension costs will drop significantly next year, with lower rates expected to save more than $100 million in Nassau and Suffolk counties alone, officials said. Credit: Newsday / John Paraskevas

I was dumbfounded by the Dec. 7 news story "LI Schools, $100M Break on Pensions."

What other profession gets guaranteed pensions and generous health care, and works less than a full year for a full year's salary, benefits and tenure? You guessed it, Long Island schoolteachers, and we are the ones to blame -- our grandparents, our parents and us.

This is not 1923 or 1885, when getting teachers to come to a town meant having to offer free housing, a decent salary and a contract to ensure a long-term job. This is 2014, and unemployed teachers are waiting in line to get those jobs.

New teachers will come in droves without tenure. Provide a pension with no guarantee, such as a 401(k), and health care to which they contribute 20 percent or more. It's time to put a stop to all this. It's killing Long Island. That's why people are moving off the Island in droves -- and why my house is up for sale, and I'm buying one in Virginia.

Arthur Gschwind Sr., East Moriches