The Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) is considering changing its rate of return assumption from 8 percent to 7.25 percent. The practical implications of this change would have an impact on future cost-of-living adjustments for retired educators. By lowering the rate of return assumption to 7.25, TRS would need to request an increase of 1.82 percent from the Texas Legislature in contributions. This 1.82 percent represents billions of dollars, approximately $786 million per year.

Retired Texas educators need and deserve cost-of-living adjustments. Many retirees have had their budgets stretched to the limit by the changes to the state-run health care program, TRS-Care. Those who have retired since Sept. 2004 have never seen a cost-of-living adjustment.

The Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) is encouraging TRS to seek enough funding from the Texas Legislature to offset the changes made to the investment return assumption.

Follow TRTA’s lead by signing the petition. Your signature will help make a difference when we lobby the Legislature.

Important Upcoming Dates and Events

Now is not the time for retirees to sit on the sidelines. April is a critical month for TRS retirees.

This Wednesday, April 4, the Senate State Affairs Committee will meet at 12:30 p.m. to discuss public pension systems in Texas. View the complete agenda by clicking here.

According to the meeting agenda, the committee will review and assess (1) the different types of retirement plans; (2) the actuarial assumptions used by retirement systems to value their liabilities and the consequences of amending those assumptions; (3) retirement systems’ investment practices and performance; and (4) the adequacy of financial disclosures including asset returns and fees. Make recommendations to ensure public pension system retirees’ benefits are preserved and protected.

The meeting will take place in the Senate Chamber, and public testimony will be limited to two minutes per person. TRTA encourages members who live in the area or are willing to travel to Austin to attend the hearing and to provide oral or written testimony. If you are submitting written testimony, you must provide fifteen copies to the committee clerk and include your name on each copy.

TRTA will keep its members apprised about the results of this meeting, as well as provide a link to the live broadcast.

Additionally, TRTA is hosting its Convention on April 8-10, and TRS is hosting a board meeting on April 19-20. Now is a good time to join TRTA’s campaign and sign this petition! Don’t forget to renew your TRTA dues and ramp up our advocacy efforts! Don’t forget that the state run-off elections are coming in May!