Articles about the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees

COLA'99: Nears Approval

NOVEMBER 1999 - "It's
money in the bank" continues to be Association President Ralph White's
reassurance to inquiries about the 3% pension COLA promised for this
past July.

For state and teacher
retirees, the 3% will become law, retroactive to July 1, 1999 as soon
as the FY2000 state budget is passed by the House and Senate and signed
by Governor Cellucci.

Hingham Makes "One-Time" Cola Payment

SEPTEMBER 1999 - Refuses To Recognize State Law - Hingham's
Retirement Board has made a "one-time" COLA payment to its retirees.
The payment was 2.1% for the 1998 COLA and 1.3% for the 1999 COLA.

3% Cola On Hold

SEPTEMBER 1999 - No Problem: White - New
COLA payments for state and teacher retirees remain on hold while the
FY2000 (effective July 1, 1999) state budget negotiations continue
between House and Senate leaders. "However, members can be assured that
the budget delay does not present a problem," said Association
President Ralph White.

COLA Upped To Three Percent

JULY 1999 - House, Senate Come Through - Without
fanfare, the Massachusetts House and Senate have quietly delivered a
three percent pension cost-of-living increase to retired public
employees and survivors.

Hull And Chelsea Accept Cola Law

JULY 1999 - Both
Hull and Chelsea have accepted the Chapter 17 COLA law, leaving Hingham
and Easthampton as the only two retirement systems in the state whose
retirees are not eligible to receive a COLA.Hull
accepted Chapter 17 at its May 2 Town Meeting and Chelsea's City
Council accepted the statute on June 14. Hull will make a retroactive
COLA payment to July '98 and Chelsea is expected to do the same.

Hull Town Meeting To Vote On COLA

MAY 1999 - Hull,
one of the four remaining communities without a pension COLA provision,
will vote on the Chapter 17 COLA law at the May 2nd Town Meeting.

Association Opposes Hingham COLA Bill

MAY 1999 - Proposal Defies Contractual Rights Of Retirees - Hingham,
one of four retirement systems in the Commonwealth that have failed to
accept Chapter 17 (1997 COLA law), continues to deprive its retirees of
pension increases by insisting on seeking its own personal COLA law.

Four Systems Lack COLA

MARCH 1999 -
Only four communities have not accepted Chapter 17, Acts of '97, which
allows the local retirement board to pay a COLA under a state mandated
formula each year.


JANUARY 1999 -
1.3% CPI Falls Short For Retirees - In light of recent changes in the process by which the federal
government calculates the annual Consumer Price Index (CPI), the
Association has filed legislation to allow the state’s 106 retirement
systems some latitude in establishing the annual COLA percentage.


JANUARY 1999 -
Non-Accepting Systems Have Second Chance - With six months remaining in this fiscal year, only six communities
have yet to take advantage of our Association’s 1998 legislation
(Chapter 306) which will allow them to pay a 2.1% COLA retroactive to
this past July.