Mark Foley's TSP

Oct 13, 2006



#640 Oct 13, 2006

Foley Will Still Get Benefits from Taxpayers

By Amie Parnes

Scripps Howard News Service

Washington (SHNS) -- Now that he's resigned from office, just how much

money can former Rep. Mark Foley expect to receive in the coming years?

When he turns 62, Foley, who turned 52 last month, will start getting

a pension of $32,000 a year, according to the National Taxpayers

Union. If Foley is unable to wait until 2016, he could choose to begin

collecting a "deferred reduced retirement" plan in 2010, when he is

56. But, then, he would only be able to collect $22,400 a year,

depending on cost-of-living adjustments.

Foley participated in the Federal Thrift Savings Plan, a program he

frequently touted as an alternative to Social Security because it

works like a company 401(k) plan. If Foley contributed 5 percent of

each paycheck to this plan, the government (i.e., taxpayers) would

match him the 5 percent.

That means Foley could have easily accrued more than $150,000 in

assets since taking office in 1994, said Pete Sepp, vice president of

communications for the National Taxpayers Union.

"That's nothing to sneeze at," Sepp said.

Foley could choose to withdraw the money whenever he chooses, Sepp

said, but there may be a penalty.

Earlier this year, in his financial-disclosure report, Foley reported

assets ranging between $237,000 and $1.2 million. Those reports

indicated that the former Florida congressman invested between $1,000

and $15,000 in companies such as Bell South, Coca-Cola and Krispy

Kreme Doughnuts.

Some of the assets are shared with Foley's mother, Frances.

As far as health-care benefits, the Republican is able to go on

"temporary continuation of coverage," a program available to employees

who lose their coverage because they leave or resign from their jobs.

Foley can continue receiving health-care benefits under this plan for

up to 18 months, Sepp said.

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