Unanimous Support! SB 1458 Adopted in House
The Texas House of Representatives unanimously adopted SB 1458 today. The “actuarial soundness” legislation received a number of amendments before being adopted, one of which expands the cost-of-living increase to TRS members who retired in 2004 or before.
Other amendments were adopted that grandfather all non-vested active TRS employees from early-retirement penalties. In addition, the amendment added provisions for retirees to receive a 13th check.
During the bill discussion, it was pointed out that some of the adopted amendments may prevent the fund from attaining actuarial soundness. Chairman Callegari accepted the amendments in the bill debate, but also said they may be stripped off the bill as it moves through the final stages of the legislative process.
It is important to note that Chairman Callegari authored the amendment for the expanded COLA and is intent on keeping this amendment as this bill enters final negotiations. The expanded COLA could help as many as 195,000 TRS retirees who are in desperate need of a pension increase. The expanded COLA amendment still maintains the fund’s actuarial soundness so that raises will be possible for more retirees in the future.
TRTA will continue to work with the bill’s authors, Senator Robert Duncan and Representative Bill Callegari, to ensure the fund is sound and the most number of retirees as possible are helped.
We are also working closely with our friends in the active educator community. We know that the end result will be a plan that protects the TRS defined benefit plan and ensures the TRS fund’s long-term actuarial soundness.
TRTA wants to thank every House member who voted “Yes!” for SB 1458. The bill will now need one more vote in the Texas House (known as a Third Reading) before it is finally adopted. That vote should come soon (as early as today, but more likely next week).
After that, the bill will be sent to a “conference committee,” where the final differences between the Senate and the House-amended versions of the bill will be negotiated.
While we still have several steps to go in the process, today’s vote was a significant victory for all TRS retirees and active school employees!
Please click here to send a short thank you note to your Representative for their positive vote! Let’s make sure that the Texas House knows we appreciate their work. We have sent emails by the tens of thousands. We asked for their vote, and today every House member voted for TRS retirees and with TRTA!
Now is the time to let them know we are involved in the legislative process! Feel free to call them, too, and let them know we still need their help with one more vote on SB 1458! TRTA Call your Legislator Hotline is 1.888.674.3788.
TRTA will continue to update you as the bill moves through the process.
YOU ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE! WITH OUR CONTINUED HARD WORK, WE CAN MAKE THE FUND ACTUARIALLY SOUND AND PROVIDE SOME MUCH NEEDED FINANCIAL RELIEF TO OUR TRS RETIREES BOTH NOW AND IN THE FUTURE. THANK YOU!