In January, the PFRS Trustee Board signed the memorandum of agreement with the state to acquire the approximately $30 billion of our pension funds. With the acquisition of the pension money, the State Pension Board Trustees will be forming an exploratory committee to research the best way to bring back COLA.
Local 600, with the full support of President Pat Colligan and the State PBA, has formed its own COLA exploratory committee. The committee consists of Brothers Tod Colletta, who will serve as chair, Brother Ken Burkett, Brother Mike Heller and Brother Dave Oppmann. These members bring years of knowledge and experience that will be an asset on a committee that will present questions and get answers on how best to reinstate COLA.
At the February PBA state meeting, I had the opportunity and pleasure to speak to PFRS Trustee Board Chair Ed Donnelly, who assured me that there will be full cooperation between the state pension COLA exploratory committee and the Local 600 exploratory committee. I personally feel that the acquisition of the pension funds and the establishment of the two COLA exploratory committees are positive steps. Our goal is to bring back COLA where it is sustainable and fiscally responsible.
All COLA updates and questions you might have for the committee will be addressed at the Local 600 monthly meetings. You will never receive any misinformation, lies, false hope or anything that jeopardizes the progress of reinstating COLA, but you will get honest information from Local 600 and the COLA committee on the progress of reinstating COLA.
With the backing and support of the State PBA, the leading and most powerful law enforcement union in New Jersey, and the largest and strongest retired PBA Local in the state of New Jersey, I believe progress can be obtained through mutual cooperation between the two exploratory committees. Joining, renewing and attending our monthly meetings are the best ways to be informed of the progress that both committees are achieving.