HB 1139

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If they were to pass HB 1139 would it go back to someone who retired in July 2012 or would it only include those who retire after Dec.2012?
No, as the bill is currently written, there is no provision which would allow a person to take the incentive retroactively.

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Retirement Subsidy for Your Health Care

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I have heard that if you have worked for 26 years with the State when you retire the State gives you a deduction on your health insurance. Is this true?

No, that is not true. For each year of state service a person has, the amount the state contributes to your health care increases by 2.5% with a maximum contribution of 65%.  So, if a person worked for 12 years, his/her state subsidy would be 12 x .025 = 30% of total premium; 20 years = 50% of total premium, etc…. However, since the current maximum is 65% anything over 26 years doesn’t add anything to the state’s contribution because 26 x .025 = 65%. If a person works beyond 26 years, he/she will still only get a 65% contribution toward his/her health care.
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NASRA and NIRS: Two Great Resources

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The folks at the National Association of State Retirement Administrators (NASRA) and the National Institute on Retirement Security (NIRS) put out some pretty good material when it comes to touting the economic benefits of public pensions, and coming to the defense of public pension systems at a national level.

NASRA

The National Association of State Retirement Administrators supports the following guiding principles to retirement security and public plan sustainability:

  • Provides assistance or rallying support for any member facing a challenging situation.

  • Maintains a legislative presence in the nation’s capital to influence legislation impacting the public pension industry.

  • Maintains a standing survey of key characteristics of public retirement systems.

  • Provides networking opportunities for members and associate members, especially through an annual conference.

  • Maintains a clearinghouse of information and resources pertinent to public retirement system administration and policy.

  • Provides financial support and participation on the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) that formulates accounting rules applicable to public retirement systems.

  • Maintains membership on the Public Pension Coordinating Council, an umbrella group that promotes excellence among public retirement systems and coordinates activities for the public pension community.

NIRS

The National Institute on Retirement Security is a not-for-profit organization established to contribute to informed policymaking by fostering a deep understanding of the value of retirement security to employees, employers, and the economy through national research and education programs. NIRS seeks to encourage the development of public policies that enhance retirement security in America.

At MOSERS, we rely on these organizations for news and information on the state of public pension systems and for information on how public pension systems positively impact our local, state and national economies.

Here are a couple of recent news items, in which the NASRA and NIRS messages are conveyed.

From the La Crosse Tribune: Dave Mills and Dave Stella: The public sector retirement plan is a model for the private sector

And from the NY Daily News: N.Y. pensions are worth defending: Offering workers a 401(k)-style plan would put them at risk
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Will MOSERS retirees be able to the MOSERS Investment Portfolio (MIP)?

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Will MOSERS retirees with investments in the Deferred Compensation Plan be able to [invest in] the MOSERS Investment Portfolio (MIP) which was discussed on Rumor Central?
I called 1-800-827-1063 and was directed by the recording to select the subject I wished to discuss. I chose "Deferred Comp" and was re-directed to the new plan administrator. Would my first question be within the new DC Plan administrator's purview?
As long as a MOSERS retiree has a balance in the deferred compensation plan in either the 457 or 401(a) plan, he/she will have the ability to invest in the MIP option when it becomes available as it will be an option in the investment line-up similar to the target date funds, stable income and brokerage option.
At this time and considering that the “behind the scenes” programming is just getting underway for this offering, and we have yet to communicate with Plan participants, the plan administrator call center representatives are not equipped with the MIP specifics. Once the initial fund information and roll-out date is communicated with Plan participants in April on the Plan website and in the Plan quarterly newsletter, the Plan administrator call center representatives will be able to answer questions on the new addition.

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What Does it Mean When a Bill is Referred to the Rules Committee?

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[Regarding HB1139] what is meant by Referred: Rules - Pursuant to Rule 25(32)(f) (H) ? What else is going on with this bill?
A bill’s referral to the House Rules Committee is a standard procedure (per the adopted Rules of the House) once a bill has been voted “do pass” out of an originating committee.  The Rules committee may consider the bill and report the bill “do pass” to the House with or without a time limit or send the bill back to the originating committee.  Should the Rules Committee vote HB 1139 “do pass” and report the bill to the House floor, the bill may then be added to the Perfection Calendar for consideration by the full House of Representatives.
The Rules committee posted hearing schedule as well as all other House hearings can be accessed via the House website at http://www.house.mo.gov/HearingsDateOrder.aspx
For your reference, the rule is listed below:
(32) The Committee on Rules. The Committee on Rules shall formulate and present for consideration the rules of the House; shall consider and report upon all propositions to amend or change the rules, which propositions shall stand referred without reading or consideration and without discussion, explanation, or debate to the Committee on Rules, and upon any bill which merits special consideration.
(f) Review of Bills Reported from Regular Standing or Special Standing Committees. /div>
(h) If the Committee on Rules is the original committee to which a bill is referred, when the Committee reports such bill "Do Pass" or "Without Recommendation", such bill shall not be subject to the automatic referral referenced in Rule 25(32)(f). However, in reporting such bill, the Committee on Rules may take any action on such bill as though the bill were referred to it after a "Do Pass" or "Without Recommendation" report from another committee.


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Does HB1139 Include a Health Care Premium?

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Is there a HB that allows an active employee to retire and retain his MCHCP premium at the active rate rather than the retiree rate for the next 5 years or when the employee turns 65 whichever comes first? Rumor has it that you would have to retire by a certain date in 2012 to be eligible for the health premium incentive. Please advise. Thank you.
There is an incentive bill (HB1139) that has been introduced, but it does not include language regarding health care premiums. You can read other posts about HB1139 on our Rumor Central blog. HB1139 has been voted out of the House Committee on Retirement. There is now a House Committee Substitute that has been referred to the Rules Committee.
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Conduct Unbecoming...

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...even for the Show-Me Institute.

The following is a letter from MOSERS Executive Director Gary Findlay to Greg Aubuchon, a policy analyst at the Show-Me Institute.

The February 10, 2012 article was disappointing in a number of respects. I’m hard pressed to believe that the Institute’s objective (as advertised) is “...advancing sensible, well-researched solutions to state and local policy issues,” when I encounter the highly prejudicial commentary that is becoming commonplace in Show-Me Institute releases like: “...Down a Drain”, “Clutching the Sewers: The Foul Smell...”, and “Steaming Piles...” Come on – you’re better than that.

In your “steaming pile” article, you failed to mention the fact that the pension plans you listed paid out $2.8 billion in benefits last year, the vast majority of which went to Missouri residents who quickly pumped it back into the Missouri economy.  My guess is that the financial experts on your staff would not have a lot of trouble computing the multiplier effect of $2.8 billion on the state’s overall economy in a year. Nor, did you mention the recent legislative benefit and funding changes to the state employees’ plan. Instead, your article painted a picture of debt that is in default with no funding plan, which is, in fact, a far cry from the truth. Following your logic to its illogical conclusion would lead one to believe that anyone having less than an 80% equity position in their home should be evicted even if they are making their payments on schedule.

When I initiated the meeting with staff at the Show-Me Institute, it was with the hope that we could open lines of communication so your articles might present a more balanced view that could serve to promote informed debate on policy matters.  I continue to believe that to be a worthwhile objective and again offer to review and comment on drafts that you intend to post on your website. Your interest in taking advantage of this resource will, of course, depend on whether or not distributing balanced information based on comprehensive research that may potentially lead to informed decision-making is truly an objective of the Show-Me Institute.

As was noted in a Feb. 14 Post-Dispatch editorial, “Extremist rhetoric creates an atmosphere in which compromise, or even discussion, is next to impossible.”  Is that really the atmosphere you are hoping to perpetuate?

You can read the offending article here. Print Friendly and PDF