Articles about Legislation that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees.

New Early Retirement Incentive Offered

JULY 2003
- State/Local Employees Eligible - In order to trim the public work force and avoid wide spread layoffs
later this year, the Legislature is in the process of passing two new
early retirement incentives (ERI).

House Moves Pension System Off-Budget

JULY 2003
- Senate Looks To Alternative Funding Sources - In the most dramatic change in the way the state funds its annual
pension appropriation since the modern fund was created in the early
1980s, the House of Representatives has moved the funding for the
State/Teachers pension system off-budget.This
move, if accepted by the Senate in Conference Committee and passed into
law, will ensure that the Commonwealth meets it annual pension funding
obligations without the funding becoming the focus of political
gamesmanship. Over the past several years, the budget line-item for the
state's pension obligation has been targeted repeatedly as a source of
funding for other non-retirement programs.

Hurry-Up Early Retirement In Medford

MAY 2003
- Although Medford did not offer an early retirement incentive (ERI)
last year, Mayor Michael McGlynn and the City Council, faced with a
depleted FY03 budget, quickly passed a home rule petition which allowed
Medford employees to retire under a five-year ERI this February.

Leadership Change For Public Service

MAY 2003
- Key Committee Has Many New Faces - The combined effect of new leadership in the state Senate and a
turnover in House members has lead to a brand-new team at the helm of
the Joint Committee on Public Service.

Romney Sets Eyes On State Pension Plan

MAY 2003 - “Has Corporate Mentality:” White - Governor Romney’s attempt to overhaul state government includes a proposal to change the Commonwealth’s public pension plan.

Romney Targets Insurance

MAY 2003
- Plays ‘Shell Game’ With Pension Funding - With great fanfare, Governor Mitt Romney has filed his budget
proposal for fiscal year 2004, which begins on July 1. Under the plan,
submitted to the Legislature on Wednesday February 26, Romney claims to
have achieved $2 billion in savings by “reforming and restructuring”
state government.

2003-2004 Legislative Program: Sponsors

MARCH 2003
- The following are the eighteen bills filed by the Association for the
2003-2004 session. Names listed in bold denote the lead sponsors of
each bill. All other cosponsors are listed in the order in which
senators and representatives, respectively, signed onto the bill.

Wide Support For Retiree Legislation

MARCH 2003
- Top Democrats/Republicans Stand With Association - Once again, the Association's legislative team has been successful in
rounding up marquis sponsors for our bills. As members may recall from
the January edition of the Voice, our 2003-2004 legislative package contains 18 separate bills.

2003 - 2004 Legislative Program

- Enhancing Benefits for Retirees/Survivors - Our Association's Legislative Committee, chaired by William Hill, has
been working with members of the General Court to craft the legislative
program for the 2003-2004 session. The following are summaries of each
of the bills that the Association has filed for the coming session.
Bill numbers and sponsors will be reported in our March Voice.

Association Ready For New Session

- Files 18 Bills: Includes Raising COLA Base - In anticipation of the legislative session that is about to begin on
January 1, the Association has filed its new legislative package for
the 2003-2004 session.