"Needham Bill" Nears Final Passage

NOVEMBER 1998 - All
signs point to the Legislature taking final action on H-5369 before
1998 ends. Labelled the “Needham bill,” referring to the Needham
retiree whose controversy triggered the bill’s introduction (see
September Voice), H-5369 allows retirement boards to forgive a retiree
for certain overpayments in his pension.

As
we reported earlier, the bill remained in the Senate Ways and Means
Committee at the close of the Legislature’s formal session, At press
time, it’s expected thatWays and Means will report out H-5369
favorably. With that, the Legislature can then move towards final
enactment.

Remember that H-5369
applies to mistakes in pension overpayments that retirement boards
discovered beginning back to January 1, 1996. Also, the mistakes must
have gone undetected for more than one year.

When
enacted, H-5369 will apply to other mistakes, including one common to
actve employees - paying into their pension at the incorrect (lesser)
rate of contribution. Finally, the legislation does not allow a retiree
to continue receiving an overpayment once it is discovered.

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