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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Here We Go Again

In my haste to post new information on the Robinson case (see yesterday's missive), I forgot one detail of the Robinson complaint. In addition to alleging that PERS effectively has ignored the statutory "exclusive remedy" (section 14b) of HB 2003, the suit also alleges that the "Notification" sent out to "window retirees" on March 8, 2006 does not constitute proper notice under the statute ORS 238.715. I'm no lawyer - and don't pretend to be - but I'm guessing that the court won't be too persuaded by this claim. At worst, the court might find that the notice was incomplete, but PERS would be the first to acknowledge that the recovery provisions of ORS 238.715 aren't complete until the member actually is invoiced. Anyway, to me the strongest argument is the section 14b claim, especially since the Legislature passed HB 2003 with this "exclusive remedy" for the City of Eugene case. That language seems pretty clear and unambiguous to me. Guess we'll let the courts sort that out. [In that regard, let me encourage each of you reading this to think very carefully about the judicial elections on the May primary ballot. In the ongoing battle over PERS, the courts are the arbiters of our fate. Judges do make a huge difference, as we've all learned in the past three years.]

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