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SOCIAL SECURITY TO INCREASE BY 2%

Medicare Part B Also Expected To Rise

October 17, 2017: It’s now official. Just yesterday the Social Security Administration (SSA) announced that the 2018 COLA (Cost-of-Living Adjustment) for Social Security beneficiaries will be 2.0%, starting with benefits paid this coming January. This 2% COLA will produce an average increase of $27 in monthly SS benefits next year.

Retiree activists voice opposition to Lyons' pension reform

By J.D. Capelouto, Lowell Sun Statehouse Correspondent 

Several employee and retiree advocates spoke out on Tuesday against an Andover representative's bill that would majorly shake up the way Massachusetts calculates pensions for its workers. 

Retirees & Unions Make Case on Healthcare Protections

Retirees & Unions Make Case on Healthcare Protections

Litany of Bills Before Public Service Committee

 

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to Attend Annual Meeting

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to Attend Annual Meeting

We are pleased to share some exciting news: Boston Mayor Marty Walsh will be our special guest speaker at the Association’s Annual Meeting on Friday, September 8th at Lantana in Randolph. The meeting gets underway at 11:00 AM and all Mass Retirees members are invited join us in welcoming Mayor Walsh. 

 

Critics Ignore How Public Pensions Benefit U.S. Taxpayers, NCPERS Finds

Critics Ignore How Public Pensions Benefit U.S. Taxpayers, NCPERS Finds

August 15, 2017: Public pension plans are resilient, pose little burden on taxpayers, and stimulate the U.S.

State Budget Deal Struck

Healthcare Issues Remain Unresolved

JULY 7, 2017: After more than a month of negotiations, House and Senate budget conferees have struck a deal on the Fiscal 2018 State Budget. Both branches of the legislature are expected to approve the Conference Report today.

Fall Remains Likely Timeframe For Action on WEP

Bipartisan Support in Congress Remains Strong

JULY 7, 2017: Retirees who have fallen victim to Social Security’s dreaded offset laws remain anxious for news of progress on federal reform legislation now pending before Congress.

Negotiations Continue Over FY18 State Budget

Negotiations Continue Over FY18 State Budget

3% State & Teacher COLA Awaits Final Approval

 JULY 6, 2017: Mass Retirees officials are closely monitoring developments on Beacon Hill, where House and Senate Conferees continue to negotiate the final details of the Fiscal Year 2018 State Budget.

Retirees Fight For a Voice on Group Insurance Commission

Fate Rests With House/Senate Budget Conferees

JUNE 21, 2017: Members who are insured under the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) are asked to contact their State Representative and Senator in support of a proposal granting Mass Retirees a seat on the board governing the health insurance plan.

Saugus retiree increase warranted

JUNE 15, 2017: The approval of the Saugus retiree COLA cap from the $12,000 to $14,000 was reasonable, overdue and justified because of the current financial success of the Saugus retirement system.

Saugus Town Meeting members increase pension benefits for retirees

Town Meeting members approved a cost of living adjustment that will mean more monthly pension benefits for retired town employees.

 

Senate Approves Major Restructure of State GIC

Senate Approves Major Restructure of State GIC

Mass Retirees Gains Commission Seat

MAY 24, 2017: Wednesday morning the Massachusetts Senate approved a major restructure of the state’s Group Insurance Commission, granting our Association and two additional public employee unions seats on the 17-member Commission.

Mass Retirees Fights Rising Insurance Costs

Budget Amendment Caps Payments

APRIL 14, 2017: Together with an AFL-CIO backed coalition of public employee unions, Mass Retirees has sponsored an amendment to the FY18 House budget proposal that lowers the cap on out-of-pocket health insurance costs.

Mass Retirees Endorses Paul Shanley For PRIM Board

PRIM BALLOTS DUE - Tuesday, MAY 9th

APRIL 10, 2017: For those retired members of STATE Retirement system who have not submitted ballots for this very important election at the State Pension Reserves Investment Management board (PRIM); Please vote on-line before Tuesday, May 9th  before 5pm, or by mail, postmarked before such deadline!

“Its essential we continue to have a voice on the investment arm of our state pension system, please vote for Paul Shanley”, Association President Frank Valeri.

Remembering Senator Ken Donnelly

Remembering Senator Ken Donnelly

Loyal Friend and Staunch Retiree Advocate

APRIL 7, 2017: The news of Senator Ken Donnelly’s passing on April 2nd after an 8-month battle with brain cancer was met with great sadness on Beacon Hill, across the firefighter community and amongst our members.

Donnelly, a retired Lt. from the Lexington Fire Dept. was not only a Mass Retirees member, but maintained a close friendship and collaboration with our Association dating back three decades.

Your guide to the most contentious parts of the GOP health-care plan

As printed by the Washington Post, March 24th.

Is the Republican health-care plan a return to freedom or a watered-down version of Obamacare? Will Republicans placate their base with a major legislative achievement, or will this be the party’s undoing for a generation of voters?

We’ve published the most incisive arguments from health experts and our columnists in the two weeks since Republicans unveiled this bill. As the debate reaches a climax, we’re giving you a guide to that commentary — pro and con, divided by subject matter:

GIC Sets FY18 Insurance Rates

GIC Sets FY18 Insurance Rates

OME Plan To Increase 1.6%

MARCH 3, 2017: This week the Commonwealth’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC) voted to set insurance plan rates for FY18, which begins July 1.

Rates for the popular Optional Medicare Extension (OME) plan will increase by 1.6%. Last year rates for this plan decreased by 7.1%.

Retirees not eligible for Medicare, who are insured under the GIC’s Indemnity Plan with CIC coverage (run by UniCare) face a 3.6% increase. The average increase across all GIC sponsored plans is 3.8% for the coming year.

Retirees Push Back on Cost Shifting

GIC Lowers Medicare Copayment

GIC Set To Increase Out-of-Pocket Costs

Association Calls for Reconsideration

FEBRUARY 10, 2017: The state’s Group Insurance Commission is scheduled to meet on Tuesday, February 14th to finalize plan design and rates for FY17, which begins July 1.

Together with a coalition of active employee unions, our Association has called upon Governor Charlie Baker and the GIC to reconsider its plan to increase out-of-pocket costs. Baker, like past governors, controls all appointments to the Commission.

With Trump meeting today, Richard Neal of Mass. enters tax overhaul fray

With Trump meeting today, Richard Neal of Mass. enters tax overhaul fray

WASHINGTON — He’s known as the insider’s insider, a veteran relationship-builder on Capitol Hill, a quiet dealmaker.

Now the low-key, pragmatic Massachusetts lawmaker, Representative Richard Neal, is facing a challenge that could win him a new title: Miracle-worker.

Valeri Elected to State Retirement Board

Succeeds Association Founder Ralph White

The following is special message from Association President Frank Valeri:

Attention State Retirement System Retirees: Maris Update!

This coming January, the Massachusetts State Retirement Board (MSRB) will implement the first phase of its new information system, MARIS, replacing the Board’s current forty-year-old computer system.

For retirees of the Massachusetts State Employees’ Retirement System (MSERS), the first monthly benefit payment using MARIS will be the regularly scheduled payment for January 2017.

For more information or to access the State Retirement Board's new MARIS system, click here.

How Trump May Remake Medicare

Howard Gleckman,  Forbes Contributor

During his presidential campaign, Donald Trump was largely silent on Medicare, though he often suggested he’d leave the program untouched.

Not any more. It now looks as if Trump may push for major changes in the principal health care program for older adults and some younger people with disabilities. But what will he do?

Retirement Board Election Alert

Dear Fellow State Retiree:

IF YOU HAVE NOT VOTED YET FOR THE YOUR STATE RETIREMENT BOARD ELECTION, ITS NOT TOO LATE.

Ralph White Steps Down From State Board

Ralph White Steps Down From State Board

Association President Frank Valeri Is A Candidate For Seat

October 17, 2016: Former Association President Ralph White has decided to step down from serving as one of the elected members for the State Retirement Board. He was first elected to serve on the State Retirement Board in January of 1997 and has served continuously since that time. Twenty years later his successor as Association President, Frank Valeri, has announced his candidacy to run for his open seat.