As members of the Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) know, there is still much work to do as the 87th Legislative Session enters its final weeks. We must remain focused on moving bills that would provide TRS retirees with a much-needed cost-of-living adjustment (COLA)!
Please be sure to tune in to hear from TRTA Executive Director Tim Lee and TRTA Legislative Coordinator Larry Yawn about how we can achieve a COLA for retirees this session and how you can help move this process along! The live event will happen today, Friday, April 23 at 2:00 p.m.!
Texas House Passes Budget
On Thursday, April 22, the Texas House of Representatives debated the state budget bill, Senate Bill 1. The bill, which passed the Senate on April 6, now includes an additional amendment that affects the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS).
Representative Tony Tinderholt offered an amendment to the state budget that takes money from a fund that gives taxpayer dollars to film incentives for out of state entertainment executives. The money would be transferred to health care costs of Texas retired teachers. Specifically, this amendment increased the state funding to the TRS-Care health insurance program by $45 million, or 5%.
Representative Tinderholt talked to TRTA about his amendment and why the TRS-Care issue meant so much to him, saying “they EARNED it . . . we need to take care of them!”
While the budget has now been adopted by both chambers, it will be sent to a conference committee including both Senators and Representatives who will work through differences in the Senate and House versions of the bill. TRTA will develop a communications campaign for elected officials asking them to keep the Tinderholt TRS-Care amendment.
We Must Continue to Focus on Getting Retirees a COLA
Time is running out to get bills moving through the legislative process! HB 3214, the COLA bill with the most traction at this time, has still not been set for debate by the full Texas House. There is much work to do to get this bill moving.
Please stay tuned to the Inside Line as we provide you with updates and urgent action alerts that will be vital in moving bills forward to provide TRS retirees with a much-needed COLA! Tune in today at 2:00 p.m. for a special update about the part you can play to help advance the COLA bill.
TRTA is hard at work in Washington, D.C. too. The recently re-introduced federal legislation, HR 2337, by Congressman Richie Neal (D-MA) would ensure Social Security fairness for future public employee retirees and provide current retirees impacted by the WEP a rebate of $150 per month for life.
TRTA is working on this legislation and many other WEP concepts to help our members. The WEP update will also be a focus on our Facebook Friday Live broadcast later today.
The TRTA membership drive is underway for the coming 2021-22 membership year. No other group 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.