PBA’s COLA Bill passes Senate Committee

SB 784 by Senator Joe Gruters (HB 779 by Representative Chuck Clemons) unanimously passed the Florida Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee on April 10. The bill creates what we call a “hard floor” of 2% for the post-retirement Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) in the Florida Retirement System.

From Left to Right: Matt Puckett, PBA Executive Director, PBA President John Kazanjian, Senator Joe Gruters, S.W. Florida PBA President Mick McHale.

This floor will apply to employees with service credit prior to July 1, 2011 who are being adversely affected by the monthly reduction of COLA credit due to the accrual suspension in 2011.

The Division of Retirement classifies these employees as Tier One members of the retirement system.

The PBA and the Florida Professional Firefighters have teamed up to create this “hard floor” to stop the erosion of benefits over time.

The hard floor of 2% only applies to employees who will have a COLA below 2% in retirement and will not lower a current or future retiree’s percentage amount if it is higher than 2%.