TRS Board Meets, Prepares Legislative Budget Request

  • TRS will testify at next week’s House Public Education Committee hearing on September 20
  • TRS will present its legislative appropriations request (LAR) to the Legislative Budge Board (LBB) on September 21
  • TRS will host health care fairs across the state this fall, and retirees are able to register now
  • An updated TRS Great Value for All Texans brochure will be published by the agency in October
  • Medicare Advantage deductible reduced to $400 starting Jan. 1, 2023

The Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) Board of Trustees convened September 15-16 for their quarterly meeting. TRS Executive Director Brian Guthrie reported that as of June 30, the value of the pension trust fund was $184.4 billion.

Upcoming TRS Meetings and Events

TRS will testify at the Texas House Public Education Committee on September 20. The committee will be evaluating the impact of the pandemic on the state’s teacher workforce, and current practices to improve the recruitment, preparation, and retention of high-quality educators. TRS will address issues around retirees returning to work. A live link to the hearing will be available from this website before it begins at 10:00 a.m. next Tuesday.

TRS will also attend Joint Budget Hearing to present its legislative appropriations request (LAR) to the Legislative Budget Board (LBB) on Wednesday, September 21 at 11:00 a.m. in Room E2.026 of the Capitol Extension.

The LBB is a permanent joint committee of the Texas Legislature that develops budget and policy recommendations for legislative appropriations and completes fiscal analyses for proposed legislation. The meeting on Wednesday is a standard part of the process for all state agencies ahead of the next legislative session.

TRS will present its FY 2024-25 budget request, which includes current law (Senate Bill 12) for contribution increases from the state, employers, and active employees. Based on long-term demographic trends, the request assumes 3.0% annual covered payroll growth per year for public education and 5% annual covered payroll growth per year for higher education.

According to TRS, the agency cannot request a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in their budget, per statute, but the need for a COLA will be highlighted in Executive Director Guthrie’s administrative statement. TRTA members know that we are advocating for a substantial and meaningful COLA for TRS retirees in the coming legislative session.

As TRTA published in an Inside Line earlier this week, TRS will host several in-person as well as virtual health care information fairs across the state this fall.

TRS Headquarters Report

TRS Executive Director Brian Guthrie provided an update on the new TRS headquarters buildings currently under construction in the Mueller district of Austin. Interior construction on the Alpha building began in July 2022 and is proceeding as planned. TRS will move its Investment Management Division (IMD) into the building in July 2023. Construction has also begun on the second building, known as Bravo.

Economic Impact of TRS Payments on Business Activity in Texas

A presentation was made to the TRS Board of Trustees by Dr. Ray Perryman. The Perryman Group conducts studies to quantify the total economic benefits to the state of pension, health care, and supplemental payments to TRS recipients.

This information is used to create the TRS Great Value Brochure, a helpful resource for TRTA members. An updated brochure will be published by TRS in October 2022. TRTA will share the electronic version of the brochure once it becomes available.

In Dr. Perryman’s report, he stated that payments by TRS are an important component of teacher compensation, helping attract and retain quality professionals to the field. In addition, they generate substantial economic benefits in communities across the state. Direct TRS Pension, TRS-ActiveCare, and TRS-Care payments in FY2022 totaled almost $19.0 billion. Pensions alone totaled $12.1 billion in 2021.

Spending from both TRS retirees and the TRS health funds provide notable economic stimulus throughout the state. TRS pension payments create an economic impact equivalent to 145,064 jobs in the state of Texas, while TRS-Care has an impact equivalent to 69,697 jobs.

Medicare Advantage Deductible Reduced

The TRS board approved a reduction in the TRS-Care Medicare Advantage plan’s deductible. The deductible will be reduced from $500 to $400 beginning on Jan. 1, 2023. Additionally, routine eye exams will now have $0 copay every 12 months. The health care plan will also provide a complimentary $200 hearing accessory with the purchase of a premium hearing aid. Learn more about these changes here.

Thank You

TRTA is the only group that focuses solely on your TRS retirement security! Please join us today!

Thank you for being a member of TRTA and supporting issues that affect retired Texas public school personnel. Be sure to download the TRTA app to receive all of the latest updates and communicate with your fellow retirees.

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