Breaking News

GIC Continues to Examine Health Plan Affordability

GIC Continues to Examine Health Plan Affordability

Review Comes at Request of Mass Retirees 

AUGUST 7, 2018: Following several years of increased healthcare costs paid by retirees in their insurance through the state’s Group Insurance Commission (GIC), Mass Retirees called upon the Commission to consider affordability prior to any further increases in cost. 

Legislature Restores Retiree Work Limit To 1,200 Hours

Legislature Restores Retiree Work Limit To 1,200 Hours

Rejects Governor’s Counter Proposal

 AUGUST 1, 2018: Late last night, the Legislature reapproved Mass Retirees proposal increasing the limit on public sector post retirement employment to 1,200 hours annually.

The legislation, which is now known as H4821, increases the hourly limit part time work from the current limit of 960 hours to 1,200 per year. H4821 is now before Governor Charlie Baker, who has 10 days in which to either approve or veto the bill.

Treasurer Goldberg Delivers July COLA

Treasurer Goldberg Delivers July COLA

3% For State & Teacher Retirees

Thanks to State Treasurer Deb Goldberg, as well as the State Employees and Teachers Retirement Boards, the July pension checks of over 127,000 State and Teacher retirees will contain the 3% COLA.

Annual COLA approval for both State and Teacher retirees is handled through the State Budget. Despite being approved in all three versions of the FY19 State Budget (Governor, House, and Senate), this year’s 3% COLA payment was stuck in limbo as budget negotiations extended into mid-July.

Baker Rejects Part-Time Work Limit Increase

Baker Rejects Part-Time Work Limit Increase

Mass Retirees Shocked By Governor’s Counter Proposal

JULY 26, 2018: Governor Charlie Baker has rejected a Mass Retirees proposal that would increase the hourly limit for retirees returning to part-time public sector work. Our proposal, which was also backed by the Mass Police and Professional Fire Fighters, was passed within the FY19 State budget as outside section 29.

Legislature Approves Increase in Retiree Part-Time Work

Legislature Approves Increase in Retiree Part-Time Work

Now Awaiting Governor’s Approval

JULY 19, 2018: The recently passed State Budget includes a section increasing the hourly restriction on part-time work to 1,200 hours a year. This measure applies to public retirees who return to part-time work with either the state or local government within Massachusetts.

Mass Retirees partnered with the Mass Police Association to spearhead the statutory change, which effectively amounts to 23 hours a week. Current law limits public retirees to just 960 hours annually, or 18.5 hours a week.

State Budget Deal Reached

State Budget Deal Reached

3% State & Teacher COLA Retroactive to July 1

JULY 18, 2018: House and Senate budget negotiators have reached agreement finalizing the $41.88 billion FY19 State Budget. Both branches of the legislature approved the budget today. Governor Charlie Baker now has 10 days in which to review the document, before taking executive action. 

In passing the budget, the legislature has approved a full 3% COLA on a $13,000 base for State and Teacher retirees, who retired prior to July 1, 2017.  

No Action Taken on Life Insurance & Moratorium Fix

Formal Legislative Session Ends July 31st

JUNE 25, 2018: Despite the best efforts of our legislative team, as well as a wide array of union lobbyists, Mass Retirees’ amendments to the House’s Health Care Reform bill (H4617) failed to be adopted. Of the 171 total amendments filed, only 25 were successfully adopted during last week’s debate in the House. 

LOCAL & TEACHER RETIREES: WE NEED YOUR HELP NOW!

LOCAL & TEACHER RETIREES: WE NEED YOUR HELP NOW!

JUNE 19, 2018: Mass Retirees is calling for your immediate help in advocating for our legislation that will permanently protect local retirees from future increases in the percentage of the health insurance premium that you must pay. Today, the House will begin debate on the H4617, a bill relative to healthcare reform in Massachusetts and consider an amendment that provides this basic protection to all local retirees – including retired teachers.

Raise the Death Benefit

Raise the Death Benefit

Mass Retirees Call on House to Increase Basic Life Insurance: Adopt Amendment #99

State retirees and active employees are urged to contact their State Representative and ask that they support AND vote to adopt Amendment #99 to H4617. This proposal would increase the state’s Basic Life Insurance benefit to $10,000, utilizing a small portion of the Group Insurance Commission’s projected $99 Million surplus as a funding source.