Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA)

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The Cost of Living Adjustments is an increase made to your retirement allowance every April 1. Each year, the change from December to December in the San Francisco Bay Area’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) is rounded to the nearest half percent and becomes the COLA amount. The amount is announced on this page in the first week of February each year.

Annual COLA Announcement

First week of February

Annual COLA Date

April 1

Maximum Annual COLA

Tier 1 and Tier 3 3%
Tier 2 and Tier 4 2%

2020–2021 CPI Change

4.00%

2022 COLA Increase

Tier 1 and Tier 3 3.0%
Tier 2 and Tier 4 2.0%

COLA Reflected in Retirement Payment

April 29, 2022

More COLA Info

When is the Annual COLA Announced?

The COLA amount that will be applied on April 1 is announced on this page in the first week of February each year.

COLA Maximums and the COLA Bank

The maximum statutory annual COLA increase is 3% for Tier 1 and 3 members and 2% for Tier 2 and 4 members. In years where the CPI increase is greater than these percentages, the difference between your maximum and the rounded CPI increase is automatically banked for future years. The banked percentage is used in years when the COLA is less than the maximum. In 2022, Tier 1 and 3 members will bank 1% and Tier 2 and 4 members will bank 2%.

New Retirees

If your first day of retirement is April 1 or before, you will get the COLA for that year. If your first day of retirement is April 2 or after, you’ll have to wait for next year’s COLA.

Long-Time Retirees and the Supplemental COLA

Many long-time retirees will be eligible for an additional non-vested Supplemental COLA.

What is the Consumer Price Index (CPI)?

The CPI is a measure of price inflation. Specifically, it is a measure of the average change over time in the prices paid by urban consumers for a market basket of consumer goods and services such as food, housing, apparel, transportation, medical care, and education. The CPI is measured by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which produces CPI figures for the U.S as a whole and for major urban areas such as the San Francisco Bay Area. ACERA bases its COLA on the change in CPI for the Bay Area from December to December.