Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee and General Treasurer Gina Raimondo are pushing plans to reform Rhode Island's pension system, including elimination of cost-of-living-adjustments (COLAs) for all retirees.
These COLAs, which increase to match the rate of inflation, have inflated pensions for many retirees beyond their highest working salaries. The Providence Journal reported recently that, according to Raimondo, more than half of the state's retired teachers, and nearly half of the retired state workers, receive more state income today than they did while working.
Is it fair to pull out the rug on these COLAs now, after people worked their many years under fair contracts? Or do the state's finances trump the rights of those workers? What are your thoughts?