To the editor:

I have determined from very well respected individuals, of known reliability, the facts of the matter pertaining to the retirement benefits issue concerning the former officer.

The Texas Municipal Retirement System (TMRS) has no provisions, by law, restricting payment of retirement benefits to tenured individuals, even if they are sitting on death row at Huntsville. Furthermore, in the “settlement” reached between the city and the individual, every member of the city government, and every member of any entity of the city government, is prohibited from discussing that agreement. You might call it a “gag” order.

I urge all readers to contact their state representative, Jim Keffer of Eastland, and seek immediate revision of the statutes that permit indicted public officials to claim retirement benefits. His phone number is in the blue pages of the telephone book.

Furthermore, I submit it should become a federal law that no public servant is entitled to retirement benefits upon indictment, all such funds should be frozen in place, and upon conviction, same should be transferred to the individual's immediate family.

After it is all said and done, the offender is going to get three squares and a roof at taxpayer expense. Why should his lawyer get his retirement when the family suffers every waking moment of every day? Permitting benefits to be assigned to a bonding company is an especially heinous issue.

Alan D. Hawkins