The 2019 Texas Legislative Session Begins

Executive Summary:

The 86thTexas legislative session began today. It marks the start of 140 days of lawmaking that will have a major impact on the lives of all retired educators. At the forefront of retiree-related issues will be the Teacher Retirement System of Texas pension fund’s rate of return assumption change and the budget deficit for TRS-Care.

The Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) is looking forward to working with state lawmakers to help improve and secure the pension fund and TRS-Care. You may read TRTA’s legislative platform here

TRTA is focused on encouraging the Legislature to provide retirees with a benefit increase of some kind. TRTA will be recommending that the Legislature increase its contribution to the TRS fund from 6.8 percent to 8.6 percent. This change in contribution should shore up the funding from TRS’s decision to lower its rate of return assumption. TRTA would like to see a benefit increase for all retirees who retired before Sept. 1, 2018.

Meanwhile, TRTA believes that TRS-Care funding must increase to make up the budget shortfall, and the Legislature should make it a priority to help retirees who were hurt by the changes last session. TRS-Care is projected to have a budget shortfall between $231 million and $412 million. 

We are entering this legislative session with a sense of optimism, and we are excited to start our work with legislators new and old.  We are encouraging our members to get involved too. Among the many involvement opportunities that will arise naturally throughout the session, we look forward to seeing many members at our Day at the Capitol on April 3rd. Day at the Capitol is a great opportunity to rally together and show the Legislature just how strong of an organization TRTA is! We will have more details about how you can join us as the rally day approaches.

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