GOVERNOR’S SIGNATURE PROTECTS RETIREES
Retired Public Employees' Association of California
RPEA - Sponsored AB 241
For Immediate Release: September 13, 2016
Contact: Kelly Boyles, 916-448-3444
SACRAMENTO - AB 241 (Gordon), sponsored by RPEA, was signed by Governor Brown on September 9, 2016.
AB 241 requires, under certain conditions, a local public entity to provide the name and mailing address of each retired employee to an organization that is incorporated and qualified under specific state and federal laws for the purpose of representing retired public employees during a bankruptcy proceeding.
When the City of Stockton filed for bankruptcy, retirees from the city organized as a group in order to become a party to the bankruptcy. This group received approval as a labor organization under the Internal Revenue Service’s Code 501(c)(5). Upon approval, they were able to obtain donations and hire legal counsel to represent them in bankruptcy court.
The group then requested from the city the names and addresses of the city’s retirees so they could notify them of their intent to seek representation before the bankruptcy court. The city refused. As a result, notifying retirees of the organization’s attempt to hire an attorney was made exponentially more difficult.
Normally, the names and addresses of public employees are exempted from the California Public Records Act (Government Code Section 6250 et seq.); however, there is at least one exception contained in Section 6253.2(b) that allows the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of in-home health care workers to be provided to labor organizations for the purpose of organizing and representing these workers.
“This is a big win for retirees,” said RPEA President George Linn. “Organizing retirees to be represented in a bankruptcy proceeding by their former employer is an important exception that needed to be made.”
Since the beginning, RPEA has been actively involved in enhancing the lives of retirees. RPEA was founded in 1958 and has more than 24,000 members with 85 active chapters in California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Oregon. We are the only statewide association representing all PERS retirees. RPEA takes an active and involved role in CalPERS, serving on their Advisory Committee and meeting regularly with CalPERS executives and board members. RPEA works tirelessly to safeguard and promote the retiree benefits of California’s public employees.
For more information regarding retiree pensions and health benefits or to learn more about the Retired Public Employees’ Association of California, check out our website www.rpea.com
###CalPERS Names Marcie Frost as New Chief Executive Officer
Marcie Frost as New CEO
President George Linn’s was recently interviewed on ABC10’s Sac & Co. Click the link below to watch:
RPEA is a non-profit association of retirees and active employees who are members of the California Public Retirement System (CalPERS). Our mission is important:
While we encourage participation in one of our 85 chapters, most of our members participate by reading our bi-monthly newsletter, giving us feedback on their needs, and enrolling in one or more of our "members only" insurance programs.
At $4.50 per month, RPEA is a bargain hard to resist. We need you and you need us — to support our fight to protect our pensions and benefits.
RPEA has over 26,000 members; with 85 active chapters in California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, and Oregon.
RPEA was founded in 1958 as an association to protect and enhance retirement benefits for all Public Employees who receive their pension or health benefits from the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS).
RPEA is the only statewide association representing all PERS Retirees: State, Classified School and Public Agency.
RPEA retains a professional lobbyist who represents our interest before the Governor, Legislators and CalPERS Board. We also have access to a federal lobbyist who keeps us informed on federal retiree issues.
RPEA continues an active and ongoing relationship with CalPERS serving on their Advisory Committee concerning CalPERS plans and proposals. We also monitor every CalPERS Committee and frequently testify at these meetings on behalf of our members.
Every RPEA member receives a bi-monthly statewide newsletter with general information and legislative, and health care updates.
RPEA offers a variety of discount programs for our members.
The General Assembly is composed of delegates from every chapter and is the governing body of the association. The authority and responsibility of the elected Board of Directors is defined in the association's Constitution, Bylaws and Policy File.
RPEA’s State Board of Directors is composed of four officers, five directors (Legislation, Membership, Public Relations, Health Benefits, Member services) and nine area directors. Each area director has a number of assistant area directors who together assist some eighty-five active chapters.
RPEA was established to protect and enhance retirement benefits for its members.
RPEA's ever increasing influence in the retirement community is solely dependent on membership support.
The New Reed/DeMaio Initiatives
Comments from RPEA President George Linn
The expensive, incendiary and promise-breaking challenges that California retirees have confronted over the past several years have been oftentimes been linked to the efforts of Reed and DeMaio.
The initiative process in our state creates an open avenue for demagogues with money to make a run at shaping public policy from their own narrow viewpoint. We have seen several efforts by former San Jose Mayor, Chuck Reed, and former San Diego councilmember, Carl DeMaio, to make scapegoats out of public employees and blame our retirements for being the cause of any and all economic problems in California.
RPEA has been in the forefront of undermining their efforts to pass an initiative that would cripple retirement benefits—an initiative that has at times included decimating the retirement benefits of those who have already retired. Yes, a second bite at the apple for those who don’t believe that the contract made with retired employees is sacrosanct.
Reed and DeMaio are extremists who have taken advantage of people’s fears and employed the ugliest kind of fear-mongering. They have not been successful because public employees have refused to allow them to advance punitive ideas at the expense of employees who have done their jobs well and are entitled to security in their retirement years.
We have written extensively about Reed and DeMaio. We have also participated in developing a strategy for responding to them with the simple facts regarding the vibrancy that a healthy retirement system brings to the California economy.
Earlier this month, Reed and DeMaio retreated yet again and withdrew an initiative that was deservedly excoriated by policymakers and failed to get the support of either major party.
Today, they have come back with a re-drafted initiative that they intend to put on the ballot. Our legislative advocate, Aaron Read, did an immediate reading of the proposal. He quickly surmised that it cut from the same cloth as those that preceded it.
Specifically, for all new hires after January 2019, it caps the amount of money an employer can pay for retirement – miscellaneous employees are capped at 11% and public safety at 13%. Really? The authors knew from the get-go what Aaron spotted immediately, which is that such a drastic reduction will close existing plans, and the costs will skyrocket.
The course for RPEA is obvious. We will continue to oppose Mr. Reed and Mr. DeMaio and the attacks they continue to make against honest Californians. Please don’t sign any initiative that has their name attached to it.