Teachers Retirement System Loses Billions

Teachers serving our community now could be in trouble if they're nearing retirement. Billions of dollars is gone from the Texas teacher's retirement system thanks to the current state of the economy.

And while retired teachers now will still receive their checks, if this trend continues, that may not be true for those in the future.

Eddie Smith, President of Canyon's Retired Teachers Association says, "As it goes down we then that 31 years becomes we are covered for 25 years than 20 years, and so on. So it's probably not me or other people in our retired teachers group right now who are going to be hurting, but the ones who are the active teachers right now, who are looking to retire, may be in trouble if the market doesn't turn around."

The state has stopped cost of living increases for retired teachers.. And now has tried to cover the extra cost by increasing their contribution.

Rod Schroder, AISD Superintendent says, "The state addressed this situation in the last session by upping their contribution to 6.58 percent, prior to that the state had been funding it at 6% which is the minimum."

Smith says there shouldn't be too much cause for alarm yet.. But a close eye will need to be kept on the fund.

"We are a long term fund, not a short term fund. So as long as the money stays in the market and the market recovers, eventually, then we can all hope to be better off, but right now we are in the same boat as everyone else." Smith says.

First estimates placed the money loss around 25 billion dollars, officials say that has been scaled back to about 16 billion.