Your Retirement

Articles about Your Retirement that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees.

3,600 Accept State's Early-Out

- Local ERIs Also Being Adopted - The Commonwealth's second early retirement incentive offer in
two-years was accepted by 3,600 state employees prior to the cutoff
date of September 8.

Appeal Board Rules For Option C Veterans

- Final Word: Full Vets Benefit Allowed - For veterans, who retired with an Option C regular pension, they now
have the final word on whether they should receive the full amount of
their vets benefit, and the answer is yes. "Our patience has paid off,"
reports Legislative Chairman Bill Hill who is himself a Korean War
veteran receiving an Option C pension.

Spousal Benefit: Employees Win First Round But Wait Continues For A Final Decision

- Association Takes On Fight For Member's Spouse - Employees, who have been denied the right to retire under the spousal
benefit provision because of the law's repeal this past July, have won
the first battle. But unfortunately, final victory cannot yet be
declared, as members, along with their spouses who are affected by the
repeal, must continue to wait for a decision from the state's appeal

Heating Oil Assistance Deadline: April 30

MAY 2003
- With fuel oil prices soaring this past winter, you may want to take
advantage of the state’s fuel assistance program, known as Low Income
Home Energy Assistance Program, (LIHEAP). But time is quickly running
out with an April 30th deadline for filing.

DALA Decision Appealed

MAY 2003
- No Final Word Yet - As predicted in the January Voice, the two decisions, issued by the
Division of Administrative Law Appeals (DALA) on Option C veterans and
personal use of official motor vehicles, have sparked further
controversy. Currently, they are being appealed, so the final word on
these issues has yet to be heard.

Municipal Early-Outs Slowed

- Caution At Local Level - After a rush of local government early retirement incentive (ERI)
activity this past spring, the caution flag has been flown and
acceptance of the home rule law has slowed considerably.

Court Sides With Perac In Dispute Over What Disability Retirees Can Earn

- Disability retirees have suffered another setback in their battle
with the Public Employee Retirement Administration Commission (PERAC)
over what they can earn to supplement their pensions. This time, a
Mass. court has sided with PERAC's broader definition of the term
"earned income".

Problems For Polaroid Retirees Worsen

JULY 2002
- Pension Benefits May Be Reduced - Unfortunately the problems for Polaroid's retirees continue to go
from bad to worse, further demonstrating the importance of the pension
and insurance protections for public retirees that we have under Mass.
law. These same retirees, who have been devastated by the loss of their
health insurance benefits, may also suffer a reduction in their Polaroid pensions.

Fuel Aid Reminder

MARCH 2002
- Deadline: April 30 - Don't forget you must apply before April 30, under the state's fuel
assistance program known as Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program,

Circuit Breaker: Still Time To File

MAY 2002
- Even though the filing deadline for state income tax returns (April
16) may have passed, you can still file for circuit breaker (CB)
property tax relief. So members, particularly those who normally don’t
file state returns, should not be upset with themselves if they forgot
to apply by April 16. Time has not run out!