Friday, May 24, 2024

RPEC Weekly NewsFlash, May 3, 2024

RPEC Weekly NewsFlash, May 3, 2024

SCPP to Begin Ongoing COLA Study

On May 21, the Select Committee on Pension Policy (SCPP) will take its next steps toward restoring an ongoing cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for PERS 1 and TRS 1 retirees, the only retired public employees represented by RPEC to not receive annual automatic COLAs.

The Office of the State Actuary (OSA) is expected to deliver a presentation that provides information on the history of PERS 1 and TRS 1 and the various decisions that have impacted the plans over the years. This will set the stage for progress to be made on the SCPP’s legislatively mandated task of developing a proposal to restore an ongoing COLA. The proposal must be completed and recommended to the Legislature by the end of this calendar year.

One May 21, the SCPP will also determine the scope of the research that the Office of the State Actuary will be conducting over the course of the year. Then, at the June 18 and July 16 meetings, the committee will have policy discussions and address questions that will help frame some of the possible outcomes of the study. On September 17, the OSA will present an actuarial analysis that will estimate the costs associated with proposals.

RPEC and a coalition of other public employee retiree groups will work closely with the SCPP this interim to advocate for the best possible ongoing COLA proposal for retirees. SCPP materials and meeting login information can be accessed via the SCPP website.

RPEC Leadership Training – Registration Open!

Are you interested in being a future leader for your chapter or serving on RPEC’s Executive Board? Are you a newly elected or re-elected chapter officer? We encourage any member who is interested in or is curious to know more about leadership to attend RPEC’s annual virtual Leadership Training. This training is necessary for all re-elected and new chapter officers.

This will be a 2-part training on Zoom: Leadership Training, led by the Council Office on June 10th, and the AFSCME Financial Standards Training on June 14th. The registration deadline is May 17th, only 2 weeks away!

Register here: https://2024.rpecwa.org/2024-leadership-training/

The training has been revamped to align with the new Strategic Plan implemented by the Executive Board, and will cover topics including: RPEC’s organizational structure, effectively communicating with your chapter, interacting with and recruiting potential members, mobilizing your chapter for legislative advocacy, running successful meetings, and more. The tools and content for the training are updated and improved upon each year, so please plan to participate even if you have already done so in the past.

To the leaders who are maintaining their position of office, we look forward to continuing our work with you. To those that are new to leadership, welcome, and we hope you are as excited as we are about the path ahead of you. With a strong foundation of chapter leaders, there is no limit to what RPEC can accomplish.

Join Us Today, May 3, for the Legislative Update Call

Please join us today, Friday, May 3rd, for RPEC’s monthly Legislative Update Call. Log into Zoom at 2:00 PM to get the latest updates on state and federal issues pertaining to your retirement security.

We will cover the work of the Select Committee on Pension Policy (SCPP) as it begins to develop a proposal to restore an automatic ongoing COLA to PERS 1 and TRS 1 retirees. As 2024 is a big election year, we will also focus on the work of the RPEC Political Action Committee (PAC) to elect pro-retiree candidates. We will discuss some of the changes that we anticipate occurring in the legislature due to retirements and look at legislative districts where we expect to see especially competitive races in November.

Legislative Update Calls occur on the first Friday of each month and are a great opportunity to learn more about the issues that most immediately impact your retirement security. The format is conversational and asking questions is highly encouraged.  We’ll see you at 2:00 PM.

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89045365250?pwd=cHYvbU80d08xTXRLTmpOZGF1VW53QT09

Dial in: (253) 215-8782
Meeting ID: 890 4536 5250
Passcode: 320296

RPEC’s New Website Coming Soon – Join us for a “Sneak Peek”!

The Council Office has been hard at work building RPEC’s new member-oriented website. We are close to completion and would like to take a moment and invite you to a special “Sneak Peek” 1-hour event on May 17th at 1:00 pm to become familiar with the new website and its components. The new website features a member-only area which requires a login to the website, which we will take time to familiarize you with.

The meeting link is https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82206617570?pwd=RDhCSWVmU1A0ZkFFMVcrS3RhcmpXQT09

We heard our members in previous listening sessions last year, and worked to create a more informative, useful, as well as interactive website for leaders and members alike. If you wish to take some time prior to this event to take a look around, you can find it at this temporary URL – https://2024.rpecwa.org/

Join us for this special “Sneak Peek” event ahead of the website’s launch later this month. We hope to see you there!

Virtual Executive Board Meetings, May 6 & 7 – Open to All Members

Are you interested in learning more about RPEC and our priorities? If so, please join us for the May 6th and 7th Executive Board meetings. Both meetings will take place via Zoom and begin at 9 a.m. The meeting on May 6th will focus on key business items and will include an update about our pending biennial convention, September 24-26th, at the Wenatchee Convention Center. The May 7th meeting will focus on the Executive Board’s progress to date regarding the implementation of the strategic plan, which was unanimously approved by the Executive Board at the November 2023 meeting. Implementation began in January. The log-in and call-in information is the same for both meetings. Log-in and call-in information is available on the RPEC calendar at: https://rpecwa.org/calendar/

Save the Date: Alliance for Retired Americans 2024 Western Regional Conference

On June 5th and 6th, the Alliance for Retired Americans (ARA) will hold its Western Regional Meetings at the Westgate Hotel in Las Vegas, NV. During the meeting, four ARA Executive Board members from the western region will be elected. For more information and to register, visit: https://actionnetwork.org/ticketed_events/2024-western-regional-meeting?source=direct_link&

The AFL-CIO has asked the ARA to collect retiree stories that highlight the successes of labor unions. If you have a story you would like to share, fill out the form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdFx1Rfelirh1uw38G3dnXNtObH07R9dXIEb9paLlfs8kSLOw/viewform?pli=1

The Alliance is also looking for stories from members insured by Medicare Advantage who have experienced issues with accessing treatments, medications, or providers. To share your story, fill out this form https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSel4B1RN8-06JVU-mDBNy4cKO2gn2kVhHbJZe1rFnS3-JjfkQ/viewform

Please contact Joni Jones at Jjones@retiredamericans.org if you have any questions.

Upcoming Events:

Please refer to our calendar page for more information for each event, including links to Zoom meetings, if available.

  • May 6 – Executive Board Meeting (9:00 am)
  • May 7 – Executive Board Meeting, Strategic Planning (9:00 am)
  • May 9 – Public Employees Benefits Board (9:00 am)
  • May 9 – Healthcare Workgroup (3:30 pm)
  • May 17 – Leadership Training Registration Deadline
  • May 17 – New RPEC Website “Sneak Peek” Event (1:00 pm)
  • May 20 – Political Action Committee (10:00 am)
  • May 21 – Select Committee on Pension Policy (10:00 am)
  • May 23 – Healthcare Workgroup (3:30 pm)
  • May 27 – Council Office closed, Memorial Day
  • June 7 – Legislative Update Call (2:00 pm)

Your Voice for Retirement Security!