PRESS RELEASE: AFSCME Council 13 applauds House passage of retiree COLA bill, urges passage by State Senate

Harrisburg, PA (November 15, 2023) – AFSCME Council 13 applauds the passage of House Bill 1416 by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, which brings tens of thousands of state retirees one step closer to a much-needed pension boost.

“Our commonwealth’s retirees have gone more than 20 years without a Cost-Of-Living Adjustment (COLA), so to call this bill ‘long overdue’ would be an understatement. The onus is now on the State Senate to do the right thing and ensure this group of senior citizens who devoted their working lives to public service gets a much-needed raise,” Executive Director David Henderson said.

Under the bill, an estimated 69,000 pensioners who retired before 2001 would see an average annual bump in their pensions of a couple hundred dollars a month. More than 25,000 retirees from state government would see an average annual increase of $2,240 in the first year while roughly 43,500 retirees from public schools would see an average annual increase of $3,040 in the first year.

Council 13 and its retiree chapter have advocated for a COLA for state retirees for many years and intend to keep up the pressure to turn this bill into law. We urge all members, retirees, and Pennsylvania citizens, to call their state senators and urge them to pass House Bill 1416.


AFSCME (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees) is the largest affiliate in the AFL-CIO. AFSCME Council 13 represents more than 65,000 public employees in Pennsylvania.