Here we go—get ready for the Second Session of the Oklahoma 56th Legislature, beginning Monday, February 5th. AND one rumor floating around is that the continuation of the Second Special Session which is scheduled to convene Tuesday, February 6th.
OREA has some bills that are being carried by our friends in the legislature and some other ones that we are keeping an eye on! Here is an early list to watch:
HB 2985 (Rep. Frix) This bill would provide a COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment) for all retirees who are members of Oklahoma’s Retirement Systems. It has been TEN years since the last COLA and retirees have been subject to increases in health care premiums, rising costs of prescription drugs, and the rise of inflation since that time. This COLA is overdue! Call your legislators and ask them to SUPPORT this bill!
HB 2555 (Rep. Humphrey) This bill adds a voting member to the TRS Board who is a member of an organization with at least 10,000 retired members (OREA).
SB 1386 (Sen. Pederson) Raise the quorum of the TRS to 9, and make the non-voting member of a retiree organization a voting member.
SB 1387 (Sen. Pederson) Creates a one-time stipend for retirees who currently live below the poverty line and receive less than $1000 benefit per month.
SB 1480 (Sen. Pederson) Increases the health insurance subsidy paid by TRS by $50 per month.
***Please remember these are just the introduced version of these bills. There are hundreds and hundreds of bills that have been filed, and we are reading through all of them. We will keep you informed about pertinent bills and occasionally ask for you to take action by calling/writing/contacting your elected officials, of course, if you would like to do so.
HB 1172 (Rep. McDaniel) is a carry-over bill from last session and could create a DEFINED CONTRIBUTION plan for higher education employees, therefore weakening the solvency of the Teacher Retirement System. Please watch for possible movement of that bill.
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