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Saturday, August 30, 2008
Please be safe out there this weekend. I've already had to be about several times and the old saying "it's a jungle out there" wouldn't be sufficient to describe how bad the traffic really is. Stay home and enjoy our most excellent (just kidding) Labor Day weather. This reminds me more of July 4th than Labor Day. Here's hoping for a long, pleasant fall. I don't want the rains to return anytime soon.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
You can bet that the Portland Police and Fire pension fund Board will be taking cues from the PERS Board and will, if one were betting, follow PERB in collecting the overpayments. What makes this case somewhat different is that the Board is clueless about who is responsible for the mistake or how it was even made. This group didn't bother to keep minutes or notes during the period and so there is no way to actually figure out the inspiration for this error. The overpayments range from about $50 per month to slightly over $100 per month. The birdcage liner also reports that Portland Mayor Tom Potter and Portland City Commissioner Randy Leonard are among those currently being overpaid pension benefits.
I wish the Portland Police and Fire Bureau the best of luck in working through this uncertainty. In my fantasy world, the retirees are left untouched and this becomes a legal precedent that can be used to benefit PERS retirees afflicted by this latest case of "no good deed ever goes unpunished."
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
In the larger scheme of things, PERS probably had no alternative to deducting the money. Billing active members would have met with mixed results and driven up collection costs. But it seems to me that PERS could have discounted the attorney fee assessment so that over a period of say 5 years, the compounded amount would have covered the attorney fees. In short, I think some accounts must have been padded as a result of this one time fee. By any criterion I can think of, this is hardly a one-time hit for active members? Perhaps PERS will tell me where I'm wrong, but I don't see how any alternative explanation can obtain here.
P.S. I'll be off the grid for a few days as I recover from minor surgery on Friday. Regular programming should return next week.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
The main act of this case begins October 23 and runs through October 27th in Judge Kantor's Courtroom.
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
On the PERS front, most window retirees have gotten their August 1st check showing the deduction for Attorney Fees in the Strunk case. As expected, the August take home benefit increased by a small amount, or it decreased by an equally small amount. The amount by which your benefit changed on August 1 over July 1 should indicate how much your benefit take home will *increase* on September 1. Add the amount of the attorney fee back to your take home and you'll have your future take home resulting from the August 1, 2008 COLA. PERS sent out the stubs for the August check yesterday and most members should start to see them today or in the next few days.