Hallelujah! According to an email I received today from Senator Richard Devlin's office, both the House and the Senate voted unanimously to override the Governor's veto of SB 897, which passed unanimously in the 2009 legislative session. This is a major slap in Governor Kulongoski's face and an equally hard bolt upside the heads of the PERS, both of which actively opposed this measure. Now, PERS will have to take ownership of the auditing process and members will (starting on July 1, 2011) get benefit estimates and Notices of Entitlement that will actually be accurate. If PERS screws up after all the auditing, they will have to eat the costs.
This is a victory for OPRI, for PERS retirees in general, for upcoming retirees, and for Kay Bell, in particular. I stand in awe of Kay Bell for having the tenacity to keep fighting for her rights against the wall of ignorance that can sometimes be found inside PERS and in the Governor's office. I toast you Kay. I will buy you dinner sometime soon. Thanks again.
CORRECTION (9 p.m.): only the Senate voted today to override SB 897. The Oregon House will vote on Monday. If you haven't written your House Representative, now would be a good time. I think the confusion arose because the Senate voted to override TWO of the Governor's vetoes. The syntax of the response I received made no mention of the second veto. Nevertheless, I strongly believe that the House will also override this veto as well.