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Thursday, June 12, 2008

March Of The Pigs

Actually it's June, but no matter. Those sleazers over at PERS just keep getting bolder and bolder with their collection efforts. In yesterday's post, I described the attorney fee reduction charged to window retirees for their "victory" on the COLA freeze in the Strunk (Sartain) case. I mentioned that PERS was charging me about 90% of my 7/1/04 COLA. What I didn't mention, probably because I was distracted by the more obvious aspects of this, is the base benefit PERS chose to use for computing my share of the attorney fees.

Remember that PERS has claimed all along that I (you too) was never entitled to the benefit paid me when I retired. This is because, as they claim, the 1999 earnings were not final when I retired. Thus, I was (and have been) recalculated to a new base benefit on the effective date of my retirement and all COLA adjustments applied to the revised base benefit. So, let me pose a rhetorical question. If PERS believed that my base benefit was calculated wrongly and that I was not entitled to that base benefit, and that PERS was entitled to recompute my base benefit to reflect an 11.33% credit for 1999 instead of 20%, just why do they have the right to use the WRONG (in their opinion), illegal, incorrect benefit as the base for computing (a) my July 1, 2004 COLA and (b) my share of attorney fees. PERS claims "In accordance with the Court's decision [in Strunk], PERS calculated the COLA amounts each recipient would have received July 1, 2004." Wait, wait, wait, wait. How can PERS do this? How can PERS speak out of both sides of its mouth at the same time. How can PERS claim it is following the Strunk court's order, when they spent the whole of the Arken case INTERPRETING the Strunk Court's order in a completely different way? Maybe I'm stupid, or maybe a little naive, but I'm not dumb. PERS cannot have it both ways. It cannot claim my COLA amount is one thing based on a benefit they claim I'm not entitled to, and then turn around and claim the benefit I'm not entitled to is the basis of their computing an amount I owe them to pay for their f**kup. I don't get it. Perhaps someone smarter than I am can explain this to me. Perhaps Greg Hartman, or Judge DeMuniz, or Judge Kantor, or Paul Cleary. How is it legally possible to remain on both sides of the street at the same time?


William said...

It just goes to show we need to change the name to Oregon Public EMPLOYERS Retirement System. The only thing the employees get is the shaft. Thanks to you I knew this was happening, but I am still outraged. The payment of attorney fees should come from the state general fund. The state lost the case. There is no reason except greed for us to pay for our own victory. Grrrrrrr!

Lana said...

Can you run that by me again mark? I am not following what you are saying.

it seems they are basing both things on what they claim we should have gotten (revised right?)

mrfearless47 said...


The reason you aren't following is because what PERS is doing doesn't make any sense in light of what they've been claiming all along. The adjustment for the legal fees has been based on your "fixed" benefit as of July 1, 2004. This, despite the fact that PERS has claimed that we weren't entitled to that benefit and sued us to get our benefits adjusted downward. So, they aren't basing it on the adjusted (downward) benefit. They are computing it on the fixed, unadjusted, and higher benefit. Just another cute way of PERS exacting the largest amount of money per retiree from a benefit to which they claim we were never entitled. Go figure? Black is white. Dollars are rubles. Cars get 2000 miles per liter, and the check is in the mail. The lies never stop.