Secure retirement benefits

Secure retirement benefits
Mass Retirees President Frank Valeri

Dear Members,

I hope you and your loved ones are safe and enduring this difficult time as best as you can. Here at Mass Retirees, our staff is doing as well as can be expected. We are still working on your behalf, albeit remotely. If you need us, please call or email.

Gauging from the calls, emails and questions coming in from social media, retirees are understandably anxious about receiving pension and Social Security checks on time. We are in regular contact with state and federal officials. Pension and Social Security payments will be made on time.

As your elected representative on the State Retirement Board, I want you to know that your retirement is secure. Neither the Social Security Administration nor our State and Teachers Retirement Systems have ever missed a payment - nor have any of our municipal retirement systems! I fully expect that all retirees can continue to count on timely payments. 

Many members have also asked questions and expressed concerns over the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis, specifically its effect on our financial markets. The Pension Reserves Investment Management (PRIM) Board is well equipped to weather the storm. The same holds true for all of our local retirement systems.

You and I are well represented on the PRIM Board by Paul Shanley, who is Mass Retirees Executive Vice President. Paul has worked hand-in-hand with State Treasurer Deb Goldberg and PRIM officials to mitigate financial risk through a well-diversified investment portfolio. While our retiree fund, like all investment funds, is undergoing a very turbulent period the system is well prepared.

Thanks to the work and forward thinking of Paul Shanley and his PRIM colleagues, our pensions are secure. You can count on being paid on time.

The same holds true for retired teachers, as well as members of local retirement systems. All of our public retirement systems are well run, well prepared, and will continue to manage the ongoing situation. All retirees will be paid on time!

During this crisis, we can’t overlook the importance of having the high-quality health insurance benefits that we enjoy through the GIC and at the local level. God forbid that any one of us become sick, we are fully insured and have access to some of the best healthcare facilities on the planet.

Should you need to be tested for COVID-19, the test is covered in full by the GIC, as well as by Blue Cross Blue Shield. For information on COVID-19 Prevention and Treatment, please click here. 

Finally, I can’t stress enough the importance of keeping you and your family safe during this crisis. The threat of infection is real. This can lead to serious health consequences for older people, as well as those with compromised health. However, there is no reason to panic.

We can remain safe by maintaining good hygiene and following social distancing guidelines. I know it is difficult to remain physically separated from family, friends and neighbors, but it is the only way to stop the spread of the virus and keep yourself safe. Many carriers of the coronavirus have no symptoms, but are still highly contagious. Please be safe. 

As I mentioned above, our Association will continue to fully operate. If we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to call on us. We are all in this together!

Most sincerely,

Frank Valeri


Mass Retirees Association

Elected Member, State Board of Retirement