Latest Legislative News
*ORTA takes a stand against STRS's possible suspension of COLA. A letter from ORTA was hand-delivered to STRS. (12/14/16)
...As you are wrestling with which steps to take with the fund, we wanted to make sure you understand our position, representing Ohio retired educators. When the STRS Board voted in 2014 to eliminate the COLA for retirees—along with other changes in the system--the commitment was made to reinstate the COLA after one year. With that commitment, ORTA supported STRS efforts and campaigned to get acquiescence, if not acceptance, from retirees across the state. The STRS Board in turn made good on this commitment.
We advise the Board to study carefully all possible avenues to solvency and only consider postponing the COLA as a last resort. First, consideration needs to be given to those retirees whose pension is quite small and on whom any cessation would wreak the greatest hardship. Second, if any change in the COLA status is deemed necessary, it is imperative that any decrease or cessation needs to be temporary.
If the STRS Board chooses to ignore our advice and enact changes to the COLA which will negatively impact our members long term, ORTA will not support any such recommendations. We will not support a COLA cessation.
Read the entire letter....
* H.B. 520 (UPDATED 12/14/16) With a self-imposed deadline of December 8, the Ohio Legislature moved with relative swiftness during the lame duck session to advance
House Bill 520, which contains many items requested by the ve retirement systems.
The House of Representatives passed the
bill on Nov. 17, shortly after the legislature reconvened following the elections. This did not leave much time for the Senate to act
due to the break for Thanksgiving. The bill
was referred to the Senate’s State and Local Government Committee where it was reported out by a unanimous vote on Dec. 7. The full Senate took up the bill the following day and also passed it absent any dissenters. Following concurrence by the House, the bill is now on its way to the governor.
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Dear OEA-Retired member,
You may have recently received a mailing from a new organization calling itself “POP5” or “Protect Our Pensions.” Led by the former executive director of Public Employee Retirees, Inc. (PERI), its stated purpose is to “preserve Ohio’s defined benefit pension plans,” including all five of the public retirement systems in Ohio. POP5 is not affiliated with OEA or OEA-Retired.
While there does not appear to be any inherent conflict between the stated goals of POP5 and OEA, it is important to note that there is nothing that POP5 is seeking to accomplish that OEA and our allies are not already working on. READ ENTIRE LETTER
There have been some new and exciting things happening with technology and social media at the Ohio Department of Education that we wanted to make sure you saw them. Read more...
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