Monday, September 28, 2020

PLAN 1 COLA Update

PLAN 1 COLA Update

Since the end of the Legislative Session, RPEC leaders been working with other retiree groups to send a clear and consistent message to the Governor’s Office about the importance of the Plan 1 COLA in the as part of economic relief for retirees.

Earlier this week, the RPEC Executive Board sent a letter to the Governor and his leadership team thanking them for their leadership and encouraging him to sign this bill and protect the COLA funding in the budget.

Given the COVID-19 crisis and the massive reductions in state revenue, there is a great deal of uncertainty regarding the state operating budget passed by the legislature. The Governor has not yet taken action on the budget but is expected to do so this Friday.

The Governor is expected to veto large portions of the operating budget in order to preserve funding for the COVID-19 emergency response efforts, given that the state will likely face a multi-billion-dollar shortfall in state revenue due to the current and pending economic crisis.

While we do not have any clear indication that HB 1390 is among those bills being considered for veto, we will continue to press the Governor’s office about the importance on providing financial relief to Plan 1 retirees.

This pension investment is urgent and will help stimulate local economies across the state in direct consumer spending on groceries, medicine and other basic necessities upon which the approximately 80,000 PERS/TRS Plan 1 retirees depend.

We appreciate the tough decisions facing the state during his unprecedented time and we are hopeful that the Governor will make the decision to protect Plan 1 retirees during this crisis.

The Governor’s office is working around the clock with federal, state and local governments to respond to the global pandemic and has been made aware of the importance of the Plan 1 COLA to retirees.

Please be advised that at this time there is concern that overwhelming policy makers with action alerts may be interpreted negatively and have detrimental impact on our priorities.

RPEC leadership will continue to work in close partnership with other retiree groups to convey our support for the COLA and provide additional information as well learn more.

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