PERA Debate

One in ten Coloradans gets a retirement through the public employee pension system or PERA. But without legislative changes, there won’t be enough money to keep the plan solvent. Bente Birkeland has more.

Republican Senator Jack Tate of Centennial is the main sponsor of Senate bill 200. Among other things, it would increase the amount both employees and employers contribute – and change the way retirement is calculated.

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“There is a problem with salary spiking. If you look at the private sector and really a lot of folks outside of PERA which is the majority of Coloradans their retirement is based on the average salaries throughout their whole careers.”

But Democrats disagree on how far the proposal should go. Democrats offered more than a dozen amendments on Monday to try to minimize the impacts to retirees – including lowering how much the minimum age for retirement would have to go up. Those amendments were defeated. The bill needs a final vote in the Senate before it moves to the House.

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