Chair Talk

September 2014

SECC (State Employees Charitable Campaign)

SERA Chapter Presidents will be receiving the SECC retiree brochures in the coming days. Please distribute the brochures to your Chapter members. I am hoping that retirees will participate in the SECC retiree campaign. You may choose the charities that you want to support. For more information you can go to the SECC website at: or call Heather Travis at (517-664-9800).


We have been approached by Patrick L. Rose requesting that SERA financially support a proposed Amicus Brief appealing the recent decision finding that the new Court of Claims established by the Legislature (PA 164) last year was not unconstitutional. I have asked Mary Pollock to invite Mr. Rose to the Executive Board meeting to explain his position. I will have hand-outs from Mr. Rose at the meeting. Mr. Rose will be seeking funds from other groups as well. The proposed cost of the Amicus Brief is in the $3000 range.


The Civil Service Commission will be meeting on Wednesday, September 17th to consider the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between DTMB and Civil Service regarding changes in retiree healthcare. I will be attending the Commission meeting and speaking to the process the SERA representatives were involved in as regards this MOU. Although there was only a small adjustment in one area (Emergency Room Co-Pay) there was an adjustment. That adjustment will save Medicare retirees some money. I am satisfied that Civil Service (Employee Benefits) and OSE (Office of the State Employer) listened to our concerns and provided all the information that we had requested. We will continue to meet with EBD and OSE to discuss other options to reduce health care costs for the State and our retirees.


Magellan will be sending out new ID cards to current retiree members beginning soon. There is a new eligibility number on the cards because Magellan is now receiving eligibility files from ORS not BCBSM. Magellan is the provider of Mental Health and Substance Abuse benefits. There is no change in coverage.

Editor’s note: Bob Kopasz is Chair of the Michigan SERA Council. He may be reached at P.O. Box 692, Mt. Morris, MI 48458; phone 810/240-8380.