Budget Rider Includes State, Teacher and Local Retirees

MAY 14, 2008: Providing a major boost to public retirees, Senate leaders unveiled their version of the Fiscal 2009 State Budget that includes language raising the COLA base to $16,000. The three outside sections of S2600 raise the base not only for state and teacher retirees, but also allow local retirement systems to provide the same $16,000 COLA base for local retirees.

On May 2, the House of Representatives unanimously passed an outside section in its version of the annual budget that also raises the base to $16,000. However, unlike the Senate version the House did not raise the base for local retirees.

“This was an oversight by the House that we are working with Senate leaders to correct,” said Association President Ralph White. “We are confident that the House will approve the Senate’s language once the budget is in conference Committee, thus allowing the local retirement systems to also adopt the $16,000 base. This will be a local option however, which means we must work closely with our local officials to get it adopted across the state.”