Alot of crimes will cost a Pennsylvania public employee his or her pension.
Amazingly, raping or molesting young boys year after year isn't one of them.
Jerry Sandusky will continue to receive his $58,898-a-year state pension in prison, "simply because the crimes he committed didn't disqualify him from doing so," said state Rep. Eugene DePasquale.
The former Penn State football coach was found guilty last month on 45 counts related to the molestation of 10 boys over 15 years.
If that doesn't disqualify him from collecting a taxpayer-funded pension then we might as well not have such a law at all.
DePasquale, D-York City, is trying to close that loophole with a bill that states any public official or public employee who is convicted or pleads guilty or no defense to any offense that requires registration pursuant to Megan's Law loses all rights to pension benefits.
The bill also would amend the Public Employee Pension Forfeiture Act to require any public official or employee who is convicted or pleads guilty or no contest to sexual abuse crimes committed against minors to make full restitution to the public schools where they are employed to restore the money the school lost as a result of the criminal offense.
Obviously, DePasquale had Sandusky in mind when he wrote the bill, but it's not clear it can be applied to
Laws generally aren't retroactive -- we don't punish people for breaking a rule before there was a rule.
But DePasquale said he believes the bill has provisions that would constitutionally allow for the retroactivity clause, which he said is the most important aspect of the legislation.
We wish him the best of luck.
But even if Sandusky continues to receive his pension, it's important to change this law so such a travesty never again occurs.
Also, there are other avenues lawmakers could pursue to see that Sandusky doesn't actually see a dime.
Pennsylvania now exempts pensions from garnishment by winning plaintiffs in civil suits -- of which there will be many filed against Sandusky.
Perhaps there's a way to rewrite that law so retirement income is fair game in cases as horrifying as this.
As galling as it would be to pay this child molester a pension, at least we'd know the money is going to his victims.