Issues

Keeping an eye on health insurance

Keeping an eye on health insurance

NOVEMBER 8, 2019: This week’s video message focuses on the upcoming retiree health insurance plan design process for Fiscal Year 2020. I realize that it’s only November 8th, but the planning process for the next fiscal year gets underway now. In Massachusetts, the state and local fiscal year begins on July 1.

Mass. Congressional Delegation Supports WEP Reform

Mass. Congressional Delegation Supports WEP Reform

100% Cosponsor H.R. 4540

OCTOBER 31, 2019: Support for federal legislation aimed at reforming the Social Security Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) continues to rapidly grow. The bill, H.R. 4540, now has 46 official Congressional cosponsors – including all 9 Massachusetts’ members of Congress. In addition, 23 national and state-wide organizations have also endorsed the proposal.

Reelect Frank Valeri to the State Retirement Board

Reelect Frank Valeri to the State Retirement Board

OCTOBER 16, 2019: An election is now underway for state retirees and active employees to elect one of two representatives to the State Retirement Board. Mass Retirees President Frank Valeri is seeking reelection to a 2nd term on the State Board.

National Support Grows for WEP Reform

National Support Grows for WEP Reform

Teacher Unions & Firefighters Back H.R. 4540 

OCTOBER 9, 2019: Less than two weeks following the filing of new federal legislation aiming to reform the Social Security Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), a strong showing of national support has quickly enveloped H.R. 4540.

Next Steps With WEP Reform

Next Steps With WEP Reform

Last week, we announced a major step forward in our fight to reform the Social Security Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). With the filing of H.R. 4540 by Ways and Means Chairman Richie Neal of Springfield, we now have a sound proposal that stands a realistic chance of being passed by this Congress.

NEAL FILES WEP REFORM BILL

NEAL FILES WEP REFORM BILL

H.R. 4540 Offers Relief For Current & Future Retirees

SEPTEMBER 28, 2019: Massachusetts Congressman Richard Neal (D-Springfield) has fulfilled his promises to Mass Retirees, filing a new proposal to reform the Social Security Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and bring immediate relief for the more than 73,000 MA residents impacted by the WEP.

Hearing Held on COLA, Part-Time Work and Option B/C Legislation

Hearing Held on COLA, Part-Time Work and Option B/C Legislation

Public Service Committee Reviewing Proposals

SEPTEMBER 26, 2019: Today, the Joint Committee on Public Service held a public hearing that included five legislative proposals filed by Mass Retirees. All told, the Committee heard testimony on 40 bills during the two-hour hearing.

Subscription Service for Active Public Employees Begins

Subscription Service for Active Public Employees Begins

Information Resource for Retirement-Eligible Employees

SEPTEMBER 18, 2019: Mass Retirees has launched a one-of-a-kind Subscription Service for active public employees nearing retirement age. 

Ratified by Association members at our Annual Meeting earlier this month, the Subscription Service is designed to educate and inform active workers about public retirement, healthcare and Social Security in easy to understand terms.

Legislature Weighs Health Insurance Reform

Legislature Weighs Health Insurance Reform

Rising Costs & Affordability Main Concerns

SEPTEMBER 2019: Earlier this year, Mass Retirees filed six separate legislative proposals relative to health insurance benefits for public retirees and surviving spouses. Known as “bills”, these proposals are now before various legislative committees where public hearings are held, followed by detailed analysis by committee staff.

3% State / Teacher COLA Approved

Work Now Underway On Future COLA Improvements

September 2019: Since the state budget was not be approved by Governor Charlie Baker until July 31st, retired teachers will not receive their COLA payment until August – which is retroactive to July 1.

State retirees, along with members of local and district retirement systems began to receive their FY20 COLA in their July pension check. The annual COLA for local and district retirees is determined and approved by the respective retirement board and is not part of the Commonwealth’s annual budget process.