Chair Talk

June 2016

“Salute to Seniors and Veterans” was held in Shelby Township on May 23rd. Hantz representatives flanking the SERA banner are: Derek Veginski, Brian Laurain, Alesha Briley and Margaret Zangara.  About a dozen membership applications were received at the event.

Don’t forget to attend the oral arguments on the Okrie vs State of Michigan scheduled for Tuesday, June 7th. We would like to fill the courtroom with SERA members.

On Wednesday, May 18th the Civil Service Commission approved the MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) on Retiree Health Benefits. The amendments to the Health, Dental and Vision Plan will be effective on October 1, 2016. I expect that Cheryl and I will be meeting with Civil Service and OSE sometime in the near future to discuss what may be happening next with Retiree Health Benefits.

On Monday May 23rd I attended an event “Salute to Senior’s and Veteran’s Expo” held in Shelby Township. The Hantz Group had a booth there and had recruited over a dozen new SERA members. A picture of the SERA banner and the Hantz staff participating is on the SERA website.

I attended the Lake Superior SERA Chapter on Wednesday, May 25th. I reported on the status of the Okrie vs State of Michigan lawsuit and the upcoming oral arguments in front of the Court of Appeals. I explained to the members in attendance about expanding our membership to Judicial, State Police and Public School Retirees. Later in the afternoon I also attended the NARFE (National Active and Retired Federal Employees) to give them an update on the Okrie lawsuit. NARFE informed me that they would have some of their members attending the oral arguments scheduled for Tuesday June 7th.

The SERA-PLUS program continues to recruit new members. We have well over 600 new members since the program was started next year. Since we have started with Hantz we have had far fewer complaints about the program.

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.