Indiana State Employees Association

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MEMBER/andum

September  2013

*MARK YOUR CALENDARS*

ISEA’S ANNUAL MEETING

DELEGATE ASSEMBLY

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 9TH, 2013

—LOCATION—

PONDEROSA STEAKHOUSE

5005 S EMERSON AVE, INDIANAPOLIS, IN 46237

LOCATED AT THE SE CORNER

OF S EMERSON AVE & E THOMPSON RD

 

—REGISTRATION—

$15.00 ADVANCED OR $20.00 AT THE DOOR

 

Any State Employee may attend as your guest, but must be registered and paid. Please be here this year so you will have a voice and understanding of what is needed to continue to fight for your rights, benefits and how to better inform and serve the tax payer.

 

If you have any questions regarding the

Delegate Assembly Meeting, then please contact the ISEA office at 317-353-8675.

 

Special Thanks to Our Sponsors

Quill.com

Restaurants.com

Grand Prize Donated by:

Purchasing Power

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How’s does an extra check sound?

Legislation was approved to provide eligible PERF retirees (or survivor or beneficiary of the member) with a 13th check. Members will receive the 13th check by Oct. 1, 2013.

 

The member, who retired or was disabled on or before Dec. 1, 2012, must be entitled to receive a monthly benefit on July 1, 2013.

 

The amount of the 13th check is as follows:

At least five years, but less than 10 years (disability)

$150

At least 10 years, but less than 20 years

$275

At least 20 years, but less than 30 years

$375

At least 30 years

$450

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Indiana pension board change cuts state retiree payouts 

Indiana lawmakers grilled the head of the state’s pen-sion system Tuesday, August 27th, 2013 on a decision to push future retirees into a market-based system that could almost halve the amount they earn from annuity plans.

The Indiana Public Retirement System voted unani-mously in July 2013 to change how much new retirees earn from their annuity savings accounts, or ASAs. The state currently allows retirees to return a lump-sum amount earned over their time working for the govern-ment to the pension fund, in return for guaranteed monthly payouts based on 7.5 percent of that lump sum.

More than half of the roughly 425,000 retirees enrolled in Indiana’s major pension plans, the public employee retirement fund and the teacher’s retirement fund are enrolled in the annuity plan. But employees who retire after July 1, 2014, would have to look to market-based rates and a sharp drop in that guaranteed money.

INPRS Executive Director Steve Russo told the panel the new payout would likely drop from 7.5 percent to a figure equaling the 10-year Treasury Note rates plus an-other 1.5 percentage points. The 10-year Treasury yield on Tuesday was listed at 2.75 percent, making the new payout likely 4.25 percent.The pension board’s July vote followed a last-minute push by the Senate’s lead budget-writer, Luke Kenley, to end the annuity payouts over concerns the state could not afford them. But lawmakers, including House Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, said the decision needed a public vetting and pulled it from the state budget.Democrats on the panel said they were caught off guard by the changes.

"This is a big decision that affects a lot of people" said Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Portage. "Frankly, I had expected that this was something that would be vetted before PMOC, at one or two meetings, rather than have you just come back and say, ‘Well, this is what we did.’"

*** But Russo pointed out the pension board’s meetings are open to the public and they have been discussing the change for more than a year.

(ISEA—However, if they were in discussion on this for over a year, then, why did they try to slip it in to the budget without Senate or House Committee hearings? The understanding at the end of the session was that it would be sent to the PMOC for them to hold public hear-ings and discussion.)

"I have no doubt in my mind there was complete and utter transparency," he said. Russo said the board was concerned about the long-term viability of paying out 7.5 percent on the annuity plans when the state’s pension funds are only expected to earn 6.75 percent interest. However, according to the General Assembly’s legislative analysts, they are 100-percent funded.

 

ISEA HAS FOUND Several interesting things in review-ing the Board Minutes of the Indiana Public Retirement

System, were was a lot of discussion on the subject of the ASA . Starting in their February board meeting with no deci-sions being made, At the April Board meeting, discussion of the ASA was brought up again. It was said that legislation was being talked about in the General Assembly. Four options were placed on the Board agenda.

Option 1) Status Quo—INPRS Annuity Rate = 7.50%

Option 2) INPRS Annuity Rate = Defined Benefit Long Term Rate of 6.75%, which is set by the Board.

Option 3) INPRS Annuity Rate = Board determined Market Base Rate.

Option 4) Utilize a Third Party Annuity Provider: Annuity Rate = Rate Market.

In the discussion that followed, it was noted that a third party investor would have a lower credit rating that the State **lowering interest rates** and the use of a Third Party could cause additional communication to the members. Staff member, Mr. Cooper (Chief Investment Officer) recomended that the funds not be separated from the DB pool. ** ISEA would be in agreement, after all it took several years to get an agreement to join the funds in order to receive a higher rate of interest. Why would we now want to take away from the size of the fund. Not to mention that the third party operator would have to be paid.**

As the meeting continued opposition was stated against two Options (1) and (4) which we believe might be appropriate. #1 we can not pay out more than the fund is producing and #4 does not have a good point in it. Later in the meeting one member was opposing #3 leaving option #2 without opposition. This make sense, it is based on the total fund income and leaves it in control of the INPRS Board. Control hopefully used wisely! But in a conference call (not a public hearing) they pushed through option #4. EVERYONE LOSSES! We must get this reversed! #1 & #2 are the only fair ways for today and the future! Call your Senator and Representativ

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 SENIORS

4 Ways to Help Lower Your

Medicare Prescription Drug Costs

Are you a person with Medicare who’s having trouble paying for prescription drugs? Joining a Medicare Pre-scription Drug Plan may help, even if you have to pay a late enrollment penalty.

There are other ways you may be able to save. Consid-er switching to drugs that cost less. Ask your doctor if there are generic, over-the-counter, or less-expensive brand-name drugs that could work just as well as the ones you’re taking now. Switching to lower-cost drugs can save you hundreds or possibly thousands of dollars a year. Visit the Medicare Plan Finder at Medicare.gov/find-a-plan to get information on ways to save money in your Medicare drug plan. You can also call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.

You can also help lower your Medicare prescription drug costs by:

1. Exploring national and community-based programs that might offer assistance (like the National Patient Advocate Foundation or the National Organization for Rare Disorders) that may have programs that can help with your drug costs. Get information on federal, state, and private assistance programs in your area on the Benefits Check Up website, bene-fitscheckup.org. The help you get from some of these programs may count toward your true out-of-pocket (TrOOP) costs. TrOOP costs are the expens-es that count toward your Medicare drug plan out-of-pocket expenses—up to $4,750 for 2013. These costs determine when your catastrophic coverage will begin.

2. Looking at State Pharmaceutical Assistance Pro-grams (SPAP) to see if you qualify. SPAPs in 22 states and 1 territory offer some type of coverage to help people with Medicare with paying drug plan premiums and/or cost sharing. Find out if your state has a State Pharmaceutical Assistance Pro-gram at Medicare.gov/pharmaceutical-assistance-program/state-programs.aspx or calling 1-800-MEDICARE. SPAP contributions may count toward your TrOOP costs.

3. Looking into Manufacturer’s Pharmaceutical Assis-tance Programs (sometimes called Patient Assis-tance Programs (PAPs)) offered by the manufactur-ers of the drugs you take. Many of the major drug manufacturers offer assistance programs for people enrolled in a Medicare drug plan. Find out whether the manufacturers of the drugs you take offer a Pharmaceutical Assistance Program by visiting Medicare.gov/pap/index.asp or calling 1-800-MEDICARE. TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048. Assistance from PAPs isn’t part of Medicare Part D, so any help you get from this type of program won’t count toward your TrOOP costs.

Applying for Extra Help paying for your Medicare pre-scription drugs. If you have Medicare and have limited income and resources, you may qualify for Extra Help paying for your prescription drugs. To apply for Extra Help, contact Social Security at socialsecurity.gov or by calling 1-800-772-1213. TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778.  

If you need help finding resources, like the ones described above, call your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) for free personalized counseling to people with Medi-care. Get their phone number by visiting Medicare.gov/contacts or by calling 1-800-MEDICARE.

Q: I’m not sure I’m in the right Medicare Advantage and drug plan or me. When am I allowed to change my cur-rent coverage?

A: This is a good time to be thinking ahead because sev-eral important dates are just around the corner. It’s also important to watch your mail for any notices from CMS or your current plan. During September and October, if you already have a Part D plan, it may change. Be sure to re-view any notices you receive from your plan in the mail. These may talk about changes to your plan for next year.

The Annual Enrollment Period (Open Enrollment) begins October 15. This is the one time of year when ALL people with Medicare can make changes to their Medicare Ad-vantage health and prescription drug plans for the next year.

If you don’t already have a Medicare Part D plan, this is your chance to purchase one. If you already have a Part D plan, you may switch to a new one for the new year. Medi-care offers a plan comparison tool that can help you com-pare Part D Plans side-by-side at www.medicare.gov. If you purchase a new plan or switch plans, the changes will begin January 1, 2014.

The Annual Enrollment Period ends December 7. In most cases, this is the last day you can change your Medicare Advantage coverage for next year. The plan must get your enrollment request (application) by December 7. The Annual Disenrollment Period is January 1-February 14 of each year. If you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can leave your plan and go back to Original Medicare during this time. A Medicare supplement policy might be available, but you would not be guaranteed a policy. If you switch to Original Medicare during this period, you’ll have until February 14 to

also join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan to add drug coverage. Your coverage will begin the first day of the month after the plan gets your enrollment form.

Between February 15 and October 14 of each year, Medi-care beneficiaries cannot switch coverage unless you qualify for a Special Election Period (SEP). Some instanc-es where you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period include, but are not limited to:

If you’ve recently moved

If you enter, reside in or leave a nursing home

If you are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid

If you qualify for extra help

If you are disenrolling from an Employer Group Health Plan

If you involuntarily lose creditable prescription drug coverage

If you have questions about Annual Enrollment, compar-ing Supplement Plans or anything else related to

Medicare, contact SHIP for help. Call 1-800-452-4800, or visit www.medicare.in.gov.

 

  DELEGATE ASSEMBLY DEADLINES

Resolutions

Nominations for Board Members and Officers

Registration of Delegates

Need to be in by: October 10th, 2013

DELEGATE ASSEMBLY AGENDA

9:00 A.M. REGISTRATION (COFFEE & ROLLS)

10:00 A.M. CALL TO ORDER

OPENING CEREMONIES-GUEST SPEAKER

 

LUNCH

 

RECONVENE

REGULAR BUSINESS

&

ADDITIONAL GUESTS

 

FOR THE GOOD OF THE ASSOCIATION

DRAWING FOR DOOR PRIZES

 

GRAND PRIZE

Fuji Finepix S4800 16MP Digital Camera with Case & 8GB Memory


4:00 P.M.+/- ADJOURNMENT

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**

IT’S ARRIVED!!

THE NEW BENEFIT FOR YOUR USE IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR YOU TO CHECK OUT.

VISIT THE ISEA WEBSITE

WWW.MYISEA.COM

AND LOOK UNDER THE NEW FOR STATE EMPLOYEES

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37.5 VS. 40 HOUR LAWSUIT

Brattain vs. Richmond State Hospital

TENTATIVE SETTLEMENT WAS REACHED AT THE

JULY 29TH, 2013 COURT DATE

****

Very disappointed with the outcome of this lawsuit!

Even after the state basically admitting that they errored in their actions (they changed everyone to 37.5 after we filed) we still come out poorly. It seemed that no matter what the state did wrong, the higher courts said that's ok. The attorneys end up with 20 years of work and received a small fraction of their billing. The only good thing for employees was that they had no out of pocket expense for the cost of the lawsuit.

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CORRECTION OFFICERS ARE PAID FINAL SETTLEMENT FOR THEIR GRIEVANCE!!

Correctional Officers that filed a complaint, be-cause the State of Indiana was not paying them overtime for the hours that were worked in an overtime status, has finally come to a close with the Final Settlement being paid out in Au-gust 2013. The first part of the grievance was paid out back in April 2013. Only those that filed a grievance about this matter are covered under this settlement.

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IT TAKES TWO!

        ISEA AND YOU!

 

PLEASE DO YOUR PART

 GET INVOLVED!!

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If You Get Extra Help, Make Sure You’re Paying the Right Amount

Getting "Extra Help" means Medicare helps pay your Medicare Prescription Drug Plan’s (Part D) monthly premium, any yearly deductible, coinsur-ance, and copayments.

What should my costs be?

If you qualify for full Extra Help, you should pay no more then $2.65 for a generic drug (or brand-name drug treated as a generic) and $6.60 (in 2013) for any other brand-name drug. If you qual-ify for partial Extra Help, you’ll pay no more than 15% of the costs of drugs on your plan’s formu-lary (drug list) until you reach the out-of-pocket limit. Some people with high incomes get partial Extra Help and pay reduced monthly premiums, deductibles, and copayments.

If you have Medicaid and live in an institution (like a nursing home) or get home and community-based services, you should pay nothing for your covered drugs.

Most people who qualify for Extra Help also pay nothing for their monthly premium or yearly de-ductible. If you qualify for full Extra Help and are paying a premium for your Medicare drug plan, you can join another plan and pay no premium in 2013.

You may want to compare the costs, coverage, and customer service ratings of other Medicare drug plans in your area before you switch plans. To compare plans, visit www.medicare.gov. To join a different plan, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227), or call that plan directly. TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.

What if I think I’m paying the wrong amount?

Call your Medicare drug plan. Your plan may ask you to provide information to help them check the level of Extra Help you should get. Here are some examples of documents you can send your plan to help prove you qualify for Extra Help:

A purple notice from Medicare that says you automatically qualify for Extra Help.

A yellow or green automatic enrollment notice from Medicare.

An Extra Help "Notice of Award" from Social Security.

An orange notice from Medicare that says your copayment amount will change next year.

If you have Supplemental Security Income (SSI), you can use your award letter from So-cial Security as proof that you have SSI.

You can also give your plan any of the following documents (also called "Best Available Evi-dence") as proof that you qualify for Extra Help in 2013. Each item listed in the table in the next col-umn must show that you were eligible for Medi-caid during a month after June 2012.

 Proof you have Medicaid & live in an institution or get home & community-based services

Other proof you have Medi-caid

A bill from the institu-tion (like a nursing home) or a copy of a state document show-ing Medicaid payment to the institution for at least a month

?

A copy of your Medi-caid card (if you have one)

?

A print-out from your state’s Medicaid sys-tem showing that you lived in the institution for at least a month

?

A copy of a state docu-ment that shows you have Medicaid

?

A print-out from a state electronic enrollment file or from your state’s Medicaid systems that shows you have Medi-caid

?

A document from your state that shows you have Medicaid and are getting home and com-munity-based services

?

Any other document from your state that shows you have Medi-caid

Your plan must accept any of these documents as proof that you qualify for Extra Help. As soon as you’ve provided any one of these documents, your plan must make sure that you pay no more to fill your prescriptions than the maximum amounts that may be charged for your level of Extra Help.

If you qualify for Extra Help because you have Medi-caid, but you don’t have or can’t find any of these documents, ask your plan for help. Your plan must also contact Medicare so Medicare can get proof that you qualify, if it’s available. You can expect your request to take from several days to up to 2 weeks to process, depending on the circumstanc-es. Be sure to tell your plan how many days of medication you have left. Your plan and Medicare will work to process your request before you run out of medication, if possible.

Can I get money back if I’ve been paying too much?

If you aren’t already enrolled in a Medicare drug plan and paid for prescriptions since you qualified for Extra Help, you may be able to get back part of what you paid. Keep your receipts and call your plan or Medicare’s Limited Income Newly Eligible Transition (NET) Program at 1-800-783-1307 for more information. TTY users should call 711.

Who should I call for help?

If your plan doesn’t correct a problem to help you pay the right amount, doesn’t respond to your re-quest for help, or takes longer than expected to get back to you, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) to file a complaint. TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048. For free help in another language, say "Agent" at any time to talk to a customer service representative.

 

COLA

IF YOU ARE A PUBLIC EMPLOYEE

CALL YOUR STATE SENATOR AND REPRESENTATIVE, ASK THEM TO PLEASE SUPPORT A COST OF LIVING INCREASE IN THE NEXT LEGISLATIVE SESSION.

WE ARE FALLING WAY BEHIND THE YEARLY INCREASE IN OUR COST OF EVERYTHING WE BUY!

ALSO DO NOT FORGET TO THANK THEM FOR THEIR HELP

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