There is no requirement to use COLA for anything in particular. It is strictly up to the local agency to determine its use. It is meant to provide additional revenue for school district to be used to cover any uncontrollable cost increases including but not limited to increases in pension (STRS/PERS) contribution, special education costs, utilities, supplies, step and column increases, statutory employee benefits, and required textbook adoptions. COLA could also be used to rebuild the District's reserve, to designate other one-time needs or for emergency (unplanned) expenditures. It’s important to note that in recent years the statutory COLA has not been high enough to cover the cost of these increasing expenditures.