Articles about Legislation that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees.
Healthcare Contribution Moratorium Approved
JUNE 30, 2014: House and Senate budget negotiators reached an agreement on the Commonwealth’s $36.4 billion fiscal 2015 budget over the weekend. The measure will be approved by both the House and Senate, and then sent to Governor Patrick later today.
Insurance Moratorium Pending
JUNE 6, 2014: Following the passage of the Fiscal Year 2015 budget in both the House and Senate, legislative conferees are now negotiating a final unified state budget that will likely receive final approval in late June or early July.
Insurance Moratorium Pending
MAY 20, 2014: State Senators will begin debate on the FY15 budget beginning Wednesday morning. The debate, which is expected to last at least three days, will determine the Senate’s version of the state budget for the coming year.
Of utmost importance to our Association is amendment #89, filed by Senator Ken Donnelly (D-Arlington). Senators McGee, Lewis, Moore, Keenan and DiDomenico have signed onto the amendment as cosponsors.
Association Seeks Two-Year Exentention On Retiree Premium Percentages
MAY 2014 VOICE: For the past three years, retired teachers and municipal workers have been protected from unfair increases in health insurance premium contribution percentages. Alarmingly, the legal protection expires on July 1, 2014!
Association officials are calling on the legislature to extend the retiree protection for two-years, through July 1, 2016.
Report Brings Focus to Increase For State Retirees & Employees
MAY 2014 Voice: Information recently obtained from the both the National and State Associations of Funeral Directors has brought renewed focus on our Association’s proposal to increase basic life insurance for state retirees and employees to $10,000.
Adopts Conservative Approach & Increased Funding
MARCH 2014 VOICE: Governor Deval Patrick and the state’s Legislative Leadership have agreed to significantly increase the appropriation toward funding the Commonwealth’s unfunded pension liabilities, along with shortening the pension funding schedule by four years and adopting a more conservative set of assumptions.
Includes 3% COLA & Funding Schedule Changes
JANUARY 22, 2014: Within the final budget proposal of his eight-year tenure as governor, Deval Patrick chose to include two provisions of critical long term importance to public retirees and surviving spouses.
As he has consistently done in the past, the governor has recommended a full 3% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for state and teacher retirees who retired before July 1, 2013. Like 2013, the new COLA will be paid on a base of $13,000.
JANUARY 2014 VOICE: An issue of great concern to the Association is the end of the legal moratorium on increasing retiree and survivor health insurance contribution rates.
Within the Municipal Insurance Reform law (Chapter 69, Acts of 2011), our Association was able to secure language that has prohibited many cities and towns from increasing contribution rates on retirees and survivors over the past three years. The moratorium applies to any community that fully implements the provisions of Chapter 69.
JANUARY 2014 VOICE: Active employees turned out in droves for a public hearing on retiree healthcare reform held at the State House on Halloween.
The marathon hearing, before the Joint Committee on Public Service, lasted more than 6 hours. More than five hundred people filled the meeting room, bearing witness to a host of government, retiree and labor officials who testified on the proposal known as H59.
Public Service Committee Meets
JANUARY 2, 2014: The Joint Committee on Public Service is off to an aggressive start early in 2014 with a public hearing scheduled for Tuesday, January 7th at 11:00 AM.
Tuesday’s hearing will focus on legislation impacting group classification of active employees. As members know, Massachusetts’ public retirement is organized into four groups (1-4), which are set in statute by the legislature.