TO: All Retirement Boards

FROM: Joseph E. Connarton, Executive Director

RE: COLA Notice

DATE: January 18, 2012

The Public Employee Retirement Administration Commission (PERAC) is providing this notice regarding the COLA Report required by Chapter 17, Section 8(c) of the Acts of 1997.

Under the statute, PERAC reports to the General Court the computation of the increase in the United States Consumer Price Index in the previous year by the Commissioner of Social Security.  Any such increase is based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W).  This index is used annually to adjust benefits paid to Social Security retirees and beneficiaries.

The Social Security Administration has announced that the latest Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) is 3.6%.  The COLA which any such system may grant, pursuant to Chapter 32, Section 103(c) and effective July 1, 2012 will thus be 3.0%.  This figure reflects the Social Security Administration COLA, with a limitation of 3.0%.

Please be reminded that if a board wishes to adopt a COLA, the board must make this decision in a public meeting, properly posted, and called specifically for such action.  The board shall also notify the legislative body at least 30 days before that meeting.  Both of these steps must be completed before June 30, 2012 so the COLA, if approved can be implemented on July 1, 2012.

Each Retirement Board making a decision whether or not to grant a COLA must notify the Commission of that decision within 30 days.