Re: “Lawmakers eye retirees’ cost-of-living increases” (TNT, 3-27).
In 1966, I was promised that if I spent 30 years in the classroom and “donated” 6 percent of my salary each year, I would receive a monthly retirement check based on my years of service and my highest salary. This “donation” was, of course, mandatory.
I truly believed the state would uphold its part of our contract. I believed it would not only pay me my money back, with interest, but would, upon my turning 66, include a COLA in the bargain.
Now I find out that the state intends to walk away from our deal. They took my money and put it in an account but didn’t always add matching funds like they promised. Now, surprise – they are short funds and want to renege on the deal we made. No COLA even though it was a contracted benefit.
They’re certain I’ll understand and sympathize with their self-created catastrophe. Well, surprise! I don’t understand. Are they the only entity in Washington that can cancel a contract and walk away blameless? And they wonder why they can’t find new teachers. Maybe the “new kids” aren’t as naive as I was.