The Public Employees Benefits Program (PEBP)
The PEBP Board will not meet in October, but have scheduled their next meeting for Thursday, November 17, at 9:00 a.m., location to be determined. An agenda for this meeting is not yet available.
However, PEBP also wants Pre-Medicare and Medicare participants to know they have a three day schedule coming up involving healthcare plans both groups are involved with. The first set of meetings take place Wednesday, October 5, in Southern Nevada at the College of Southern Nevada's Cheyenne Campus in the Horn Theatre. The campus is located at 3200 East Cheyenne Avenue and will begin at 9 a.m. Both sessions are scheduled for two hours, one from 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. and a second from 1 p.m. - 3 p.m.. On Thursday, October 6, PEBP and Towers Watson will be in Carson City at the National Guard Armory Auditorium located at 2460 Fairview Drive. Again, sessions run from 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. and from 1 p.m. - 3 p.m. The third day is in Reno at Truckee Meadows Community College's Sierra Building Rooms 105 and 204, and again there will be two sessions for each group, beginning at 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. For more information about these meetings, please contact PEBP at 775-684-7000. Attendance is very important and will go a long way toward clearing up any questions and/or concerns you may have with your health care through PEBP and the Medicare Exchange, Towers Watson, especially since Open Enrollment begins October 1. Participants in the Medicare Exchange need to be very careful NOT to dis-enroll rom the Medicare Exchange during Open Enrollment. Typically insurance companies inundate retirees during open enrollment with the promise of lower rates, however, when a Medicare Exchange participant leaves the PEBP sanctioned Medicare Exchange, they face losing their employer contributions to help with premium costs as well as the loss of their life insurance. Please see RPEN's next "Health Matters" column within our next RPEN Review newsletter that will be out in the next couple of weeks.
PEBP INFORMATIONAL MEETINGS WITH WILLIS TOWERS WATSON'S
Meetings commenced October 5 in Las Vegas and will conclude October 7 in Reno. Two sessions were held in Las Vegas and Reno as well as a third session October 6 in Carson City. Attendance each day numbered around 40 and were geared towards Pre-Medicare and Medicare participants in the One Exchange Medicare Exchange. Anyone having issues with their plan was encouraged to attend one of the meetings that were held in the morning and afternoon.
Additionally PEBP will have a Willis TW One Exchange Representative in their Carson City office on Stewart Street one week per month through December. Stacy Nelson will be at PEBP October 10-October 14; November 14-November 18 and December 12-December 16. If you were unable to attend one of the informational meetings in the North, contact Stacy at 1-866-266-1395 to schedule a one-on-one meeting with her ASAP.
For additional information about PEBP, please visit their web-site by clicking on the link below.
Public Employees Retirement System of Nevada (PERS)
The Nevada PERS Board will meet again on October 20 in Las Vegas at the PERS offices located at 5820 Eastern Avenue. An agenda will be posted here when it becomes available.
Nevada Policy Research Institute Targets NV PERS
RPEN has obtained a document being used by NPRI in a fundraising attempt that names NV PERS many times in an effort to once again target PERS as another legislative session fast approaches. The document was given to RPEN anonymously. All public employees, those retired as well as those still working, need to be alarmed by this document, that can be viewed by clicking on the link below.
NPRI also recently filed a petition for a writ of mandamus in Carson City seeking the release of data requested from PERS in a format that is more usable for NPRI, which maintains a searchable online database of public employee salary and benefit information. In the document NPRI said it requested data about pension payouts last year to add to a website it maintains called Transparent Nevada. They said they received a report that listed pension payouts not by retiree name but by Social Security number, which by law must be redacted. NPRI complained this information leaves nothing more than a list of payments to unknown individuals. NPRI also said in their complaint a 2015 Nevada Supreme Court decision indicates that agencies are not excused from their disclosure duties if they have a computer program that could compile the information. The request for information from NV PERS started several years ago with a request from the Reno Gazette Journal. A hearing date for this latest effort has not been set.
For more information about Nevada PERS please visit their web-site by clicking on the link below.
Nevada State Legislature 2015-2016 Interim
(ALSO SEE THE LINK "LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS" ON OUR HOME PAGE FOR ADDITIONAL LEGISLATIVE INFORMATION)
Second Interim Retirement and Benefits Committee Meeting Scheduled for
December 14, 2016!!
The next meeting of the Interim and Retirement Benefits Committee has been scheduled for Wednesday, December 14, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. in Carson City. The meeting will be held in Room 3138 of the State Legislative Building located at 401 South Carson Street, with a video-conference planned in Room 4412 of the Grant Sawyer Building in Las Vegas at 555 East Washington Avenue. This will be a very important meeting as issues expected to be considered by the Nevada State Legislature at the 2017 session are likely to come up.
The first meeting of the interim was held February 19 in Carson City with a video conference in Las Vegas at the Grant Sawyer Building.
Nevada State Senator Ben Kieckhefer (SD 16/Carson City-Washoe) chaired the meeting attended by many RPEN members from Reno, Sparks, Carson City and Minden in the North and Las Vegas, Henderson, Summerlin and Boulder City in the South.
PERS Executive Officer Tina Leiss was called to the table first and she outlined legislation passed in 2015 that impacts PERS, including SB 406 that is estimated to save the state $10 billion over ten years once the changes are fully implemented (mostly for new hires). Many of the issues she discussed can be viewed by clicking on the link below.
Damon Haycock, Executive Officer at PEBP spoke next on where PEBP stands on dealing with the non-state participants in PEBP, commonly referred to as "orphans" who are subjected to escalating health care costs because of the size of their group. IRBC Member Assemblyman Randy Kirner (AD 26-Reno) told Haycock the state has been dealing with this subject long enough, calling a "train wreck" and implored him to handle it once and for all. Kirner also addressed the fact brought forth by RPEN's Legislative Advocate Marlene Lockard when she testified the first time under public comment, that Towers Watson/One Exchange, the group that handles the Medicare Retirees, still has not hired a full time person to be in Nevada to handle complaints, issues and concerns by the thousands of participants in the exchange. Haycock said PEBP helped usher in a pilot program last year to bring someone from Towers Watson to visit areas in Nevada (north and south) but Kirner said there should be a full time presence here and Lockard agreed during her 2nd round of public comment. She said Towers Watson should be the one to pay for the cost of opening a full time office in Nevada, and Kirner agreed.
The IRBC normally meets twice per year during the interim so their next meeting will likely be later this year. To view additional materials from PEBP considered during this meeting please click on the link below.
- Senator Ben Kieckhefer, Chair
- Assemblyman Paul Anderson, Vice Chair
- Senator Pete Goicoechea
- Senator Joyce Woodhouse
- Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton
- Assemblyman Randy Kirner
Mark Krmpotic, Fiscal Analyst
Cindy Jones, Fiscal Analyst
Alex Haartz, Principal Deputy Fiscal Analyst
Judy Lyons, Secretary
Brenda J. Erdoes, Legislative Counsel
Eileen G. O'Grady, Chief Deputy Legislative Counsel
Northern Tri-County Chapter Keeps the Public in Their Area Informed During the Legislature and Beyond!!
NTC Chapter President Mike Bumgartner (who also now chairs RPEN's Legislative/Insurance Committee) authors a regular article in the local newspapers in his area, begun in 2015 and continues as we head toward the 2017 legislative session. To read last year's monthly columns, as well as his latest columns please click on the links below.
Retired Public Employees of Nevada (RPEN) Wraps Up Their 2016 Annual Board of Directors' Meeting in Elko
The local Elko economy was infused with over thirty thousand dollars as the Retired Public Employees of Nevada (RPEN) held its’ annual Board of Directors meeting there September 20-23.
Nearly one-hundred members and guests of RPEN converged from all over Nevada for the annual gathering hosted by the local Elko Chapter at the Ramada Hotel/Stockmen’s Casino for the week. A bus was chartered in Southern Nevada to carry 35 of the members from seven of RPEN’s chapters located in Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite/Overton, Lincoln and White Pine. Members from the other twelve chapters drove in from Northern Nevada, including Pahrump, Carson City, Tonopah, Mineral, Reno, Sparks, Fallon, Fernley and Winnemucca.
The business of the group included nine workshops covering topics important to public employees on such things as making a difference at the state legislature, building a chapter newsletter, social media and parliamentary procedures, to name a few. A legislative panel discussion is a staple of our annual meeting, and this year included two State Assembly members; Glenn Trowbridge from Summerlin, who is also a past State President of RPEN, and Elko Assemblyman John Ellison. The panel covered topics RPEN will be concerned with at the next legislative session, including recent attacks on the state’s Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS).
Formed in 1976, RPEN’s sole mission has and always will be the protection of our members’ pension and health care benefits, often earned in lieu of pay increases. There are also constitutional protections for these benefits and RPEN works alongside other public employee groups at the Legislature and beyond to protect those benefits.
RPEN, a 501 (c) (4) non-profit organization, has nearly nine-thousand dues paying members. The annual meeting brings our members together to discuss many issues, but it isn’t all business. Four of our members received Special Recognition Awards, including: Sarah “Pete” Getker from Lincoln, Jimmy Green from Las Vegas, Lonnie Strait from Summerlin and Sue Durst from Reno. A Lifetime Achievement Award was also presented to Jack Milligan from our Las Vegas Chapter, who served RPEN as State President from 2003-2005. Entertainment during our awards banquet was provided by Barn J Entertainment, a local favorite in Elko.
Our host committee for the Elko meeting was led by Chapter President Janice Barton, and our annual meeting for 2017 will be hosted by our Summerlin Chapter.
The Executive Committee of RPEN will come together again in the new year, January 18-19, as they meet for the first meeting of year in the boardroom of RPEN's State Office in Carson City.
* Legislative meetings can also be seen/heard live over the Internet at: www.leg.state.nv.us Just go to that Web site and click on Listen to Meetings Live on the Internet