TREASURER CHELLIS APPLAUDS GENERAL ASSEMBLY FOR IMPORTANT VETO OVERRIDE
For Immediate Release:
June 4, 2008
Contact: Scott Malyerck
Passage of legislation ensures greater financial stability for Retirement System and cost-of-living adjustments for retirees
(Columbia, SC)…”After one full year of hard work, we now have legislation that stabilizes our State Retirement System and reduces
its unfunded liability while ensuring that our retirees are treated fairly and with respect,” said State Treasurer Converse Chellis, adding,
“With strong leadership and a willingness to work together, we can accomplish great things.”
The House voted yesterday 108 to 7 and the Senate voted 46 to 0 today to override Governor Sanford’s veto of H.4876 otherwise known
as the “COLA Bill.”
The Treasurer’s COLA Task Force worked for over a year to find a solution to a forty-year-old problem. For approximately forty years
the State had granted ad hoc COLAS to retirees. This method of giving cost-of-living increases placed a huge financial burden on the
well-being of the Retirement System. It also required retirees to come to Columbia to beg for a cost-of-living adjustment year after year.
The passage of this bill puts and end to these antiquated and ineffective practices.
The legislation will help decrease the $9 billion unfunded liability of the Retirement System, puts an end to automatic granting of ad hoc COLAs,
guarantees retirees a 2% COLA without any additional funding of any kind, and helps to protect our State’s credit rating.
Treasurer Chellis is grateful to the membership of the General Assembly for taking a stand and overriding a veto that would have cost
the State billions of dollars over time.
Chellis said, “Today, we have taken a big step forward, not only for retirees, but the State and the people of South Carolina as well.”
Treasurer Chellis, who chaired the COLA Task Force, acknowledged the work that former Treasurer Thomas Ravenel and Ken Wingate
did to further this legislation. Chellis also thanked the members of the Task Force for their diligent and persistent work in finding a solution
to a major financial problem.
# # #