Board Approves 5% Cost-of-Living Adjustment Effective January 1, 2022

Board Approved Funding Policy image

At the October 25, 2021 PSRS/PEERS Board of Trustees meeting, the Board voted to grant a 5% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for eligible benefit recipients effective January 1, 2022.

Missouri law states that a 5% COLA must be granted when the CPI-U equals or exceeds 5%, as does the PSRS/PEERS funding policy.

The total increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for the 12 months in fiscal year 2021 (July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021) was 5.3915%. The last time a 5% COLA was given was in 2009.

“Over the past fiscal year, we experienced an unusually high CPI-U increase,” said Board Chair Jason Steliga. “The COLA policy is designed to ensure that our retirees receive an adequate COLA in years when the cost of living increases.” He added, “We are confident that the policy is working as intended, to help us ensure we make sound decisions that are in the best financial interest of all our members.”

It is the Board's fiduciary responsibility to the Systems and members to make decisions that are consistent with maintaining the Systems' ongoing financial health and strong funded status. As of June 30, 2021, PSRS was 85.2% pre-funded and PEERS was 87.7% pre-funded. This means, that as of the end of our last fiscal year, PSRS/PEERS had enough assets on hand to pay more than 80% of all present and projected future benefits with today's dollars. 

PSRS/PEERS provides service retirement, disability, and survivor benefits for more than 128,000 active members and over 100,000 retired Missouri public school teachers, school employees, and their families. The market value of invested assets for PSRS and PEERS combined were approximately $56.8 billion as of June 30, 2021 making the combined entity larger than all other public retirement plans in the state combined. PSRS/PEERS is the 46th largest defined benefit plan in the United States and 105th largest plan in the world.