Social Security Withholding Changes

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When can we expect to see the change in Social Security withholdings on our payroll checks?
According to the December 2010 changes in Federal law, the Social Security contribution rate changed to 4.2% employee (6.2% employer) on January 1, 2011 affecting any paychecks paid on or after that date.  State of Missouri employees saw this change with their January 14, 2011 payroll checks.  Questions can be directed to your agency payroll/personnel office.
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BackDROP Rumor

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We have heard that there may be a new plan in the works regarding the back drop. That it would be changed to where only the people who are actually working towards their back drop at the time will be able to get it. That anyone who is at 80 and out or before will not be able to get the back drop. 
At this point no such legislation has been filed.  We will monitor the legislative session and inform our members of any legislation signed into law that impacts them.
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Laws Passed at the Federal Level to Help Revive Economy Should Take Seniors Into Account

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The laws that the President passes to revive the economy should include seniors. Taking money away by reducing their pension with taxes is going to send the economy into a deeper recession. This generation working now is not saving or investing the extra monies they receive. You are only giving away the goose that laid the golden egg.The extra monies in the paycheck for 2011 will only put us deeper in debt.

The Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System (MOSERS) administers retirement, long-term disability and life insurance benefits for our members. MOSERS cannot control actions taken by the federal government. Your concerns are better directed to your congressional representative or the president.
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Layoff Rules Administered by the State

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There is a rumor that the State plans to change the lay-off rules, which would require anyone who has their backdrop to retire and not allow them to bump other employees to keep a job. Is this true? And, if so, would this mean you could be "required" to retire if you only had your two year minimum backdrop or would you have to have completed the entire five year backdrop period before you had to retire?
 Through the years, there have been recurring discussions about ways to try to improve layoff processes for agencies within Missouri State Government.  However, at this point, we are not aware of any discussions to implement the approach you reference.  The current rules for layoffs within Merit System agencies do not limit employee options to transfer or demote in lieu of layoff based on BackDROP status and we are not aware of any movement in this direction.
Please note that MOSERS does not administer layoff rules. Rather, that is handled by the Division of Personnel within the Office of Administration. We asked for their input on this response.
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Frustrating Process Regarding Proposed Retirement Incentives

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We have received a couple of similar Rumor Central questions recently. Here are the questions, followed by our response:
Why does the legislature play games with state employees like last year when first we thought that the insurance premiums for a retiree would be the same as an active member which didn't pass, then they offered the retirement incentive for someone retiring with at least 10 years could get $1,000.00 incentive for up to 20 years payable in 5 installments which also didn't pass. This was a big disappointment to me and now they are doing the same thing in HB305.
Why does the legislature always jerk state employees around regarding bills with retirement incentives and get our hopes up and then they don't pass?
We understand the frustration that the legislative process can sometimes cause, particularly when the outcome of such legislation would greatly impact you.  Legislative proposals are considered through a deliberative process, which often includes the views of both proponents and opponents to the proposed change.  As a result, some laws pass and some do not and no one can predict whether or not a particular bill will pass. MOSERS has no control over that process, and ultimately, decisions about the laws governing the retirement plan, including any incentive offered and the time period for which it is offered, rest with the legislature and the Governor's office. As is always the case, you can express your concerns regarding this matter to your elected representatives in the legislature, as well as to the bill’s sponsor. MOSERS will monitor this and all other legislation that may impact our members and keep you informed.


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