I did point out that if they were focusing on the COLA, then there were smarter and better ways to approach any COLA changes than what is currently in the proposal and what other states have done in this area. While not the only element we need to talk about, everyone knows – and has known for months – that the COLA is the largest cost driver. It represents 22-25% of the cost of the benefit. Other factors, for example, increased member contributions have and should be part of the discussion, but our funding hole is so deep that changes to the COLA must be part of the solution in any scenario. It is the only way that the math can work.
“Look at every other state that's done pension reform – what have they done? They've changed the COLA because that's where the cost is,” Mr. Ingram said, noting that 25 percent of TRS payments are for cost-of-living increases on pension benefits.
Read more: http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20121003/NEWS02/121009921/head-of-teacher-pension-fund-says-state-will-need-to-cut-colas#ixzz28ZoB2aNL
Read Once again we have a problem with TRS Executive Director Dick Ingram