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TEACHER ELECTION UNDERWAY

NOVEMBER 9, 2007: TEACHERS’ RETIREMENT BOARD ELECTION ENDORSEMENT:

DOW & MITCHELL ENDORSED

The Association is pleased to announce the endorsements of John "Jay" Dow and Karen Mitchell for election to the Massachusetts Teachers' Retirement Board. This election is now underway, with ballots having now been mailed to all retired and active teachers, who are members of the MA Teachers Retirement System (Boston teachers are members of the City of Boston Retirement System and are not members of the MTRS).

A REGRETFUL ANNOUNCEMENT

Billy Rehrey
Billy Rehrey

OCTOBER 22, 2007: We regret to announce the death of Billy Rehrey (age 25), son of Association Executive Vice President/Legal Counsel Bill Rehrey and grandson of Association President Ralph White, died suddenly of a heart attack, while watching Game 7 of the American League Championship Series, at a family gathering on Sunday night.

Update: We wish to thank the many members and friends who sent condolence cards on behalf of the sudden death of Billy Rehrey, the son of Association Legal Counsel/Vice President Bill Rehrey and grandson of Association President Ralph White. The funeral was very uplifting on a sunny autumn day with surrounding foliage at its peak. Also, we thank those who donated to the Cardiac Clinical Research Fund at Children’s Hospital.

 

                                Bill Rehrey        Ralph White

 

LOCAL INSURANCE DEADLINE EXTENDED

OCTOBER 12, 2007: Governor Deval Patrick and legislative leaders have agreed to extend the deadline for local governments to join the state's Group Insurance Commission to October 29, 2007. Originally, an October 1, 2007 deadline existed under the law. However, due to local interest in joining the GIC and the fact that negotiations are underway in a number of local communities, state leaders opted to extend the deadline.

OPTION C STUDY EYED

OCTOBER 5, 2007: Members who retired prior to July 1, 2004 and chose an Option C pension remain outraged over the issue of the outdated mortality used to calculate their pension. Legislation moved forward this week that could bring about a resolution to the issue.

STATE RETIREMENT BOARD ELECTION

Ballots will shortly be sent to all members of the State Retirement System for a very important election.

Association President Ralph White is running for re-election to a new three-year term as one of the two elected members of the State Retirement Board. The second elected seat is currently being held by Theresa McGoldrick. Her term will not expire this year.

Ralph White, the senior member of the Board, wishes to remind all retired state employees of the importance of this election. He is the only state retiree on the five-member Board. The following statement is from Mr. White:

“Retirees need an experienced member on the Board upon whom they can count to look out for their best interests and those of their survivors, someone who will fight on their behalf, both at the Retirement Board and at the Legislature.

“There are seven candidates in this case. In a random pick for ballot position, I am fifth. You will see the word incumbent next to my name. Do not take this election for granted. Please take the time to return your ballot as instructed so that it will be registered and be counted. Your vote is very important to all retirees even though they may belong to one of our other retirement systems.

“I have devoted my life to you and all public retirees of this state. All I ask is that you, as a member of the State Retirement System, spend $0.41 (postage stamp) so that I can continue to represent you at the State Retirement Board and in turn continue to lead our crusade for members and survivors of the Commonwealth’s retirement systems.”

Thank you very much.

Ralph White

Note to active state employees: “While I am a retired state employee, I also represent you on the State Retirement Board. Theresa McGoldrick, my counterpart, who is the other elected member on the Board, works with me as a team. She does an excellent job on behalf of the members of our system. You, as well as our retirees, can reach me at 617-723-7283 at anytime if you have a pension question or problem. I would greatly appreciate your vote. Check with your agency or department office for ballots.”

Thank you,

Ralph White

STATE RETIREMENT BOARD ELECTION

Ralph WhiteBallots will shortly be sent to all members of the State Retirement System for a very important election.

Association President Ralph White is running for re-election to a new three-year term as one of the two elected members of the State Retirement Board. The second elected seat is currently being held by Theresa McGoldrick. Her term will not expire this year.

Ralph White, the senior member of the Board, wishes to remind all retired state employees of the importance of this election. He is the only state retiree on the five-member Board. The following statement is from Mr. White:

KERRY AGREES TO SUPPORT WEP/GPO HEARINGS

SEPTEMBER 12, 2007: After hearing the outcry of Association members, outraged by the lack of federal action on the issues of WEP/GPO repeal, US Senator John Kerry has agreed to support our Association’s request to hold public hearings on the issue of Social Security this fall.

RETIREES OUTRAGED OVER SOCIAL SECURITY STANCE

AUGUST 24, 2007:   The phones in the Association’s Boston office have been ringing white hot with calls from retirees who are outraged by the refusal of Senator John Kerry to hold a public hearing on the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO), as we reported in the September Voice. Many members have notified the Association that they contacted the Senator’s office to express their concern and repeated our request for a public hearing.

July COLA Paid on Schedule

SEPT 2007 - Members of the State and Teachers’ Retirement Systems, as well as those of our 104 local retirement systems, received their new 3% cost-of-living increase this July.

Powerful House Chair Calls For Hearing

Sept 2007 - Spells Out Need - In sharp contrast to the position taken in the U.S. Senate, where a 2007 hearing on Social Security has been all but ruled out, leaders in the House of Representatives are not shying away from addressing the dreaded Social Security offset laws.

Advancing the prospect of full hearings in the House on the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and the Government Pension Offset (GPO) is House Ways and Chairman Charles Rangel. The powerful New York Democrat has publicly called for hearings to take place, during the current Congressional session, on the issue.