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Monday, December 23, 2013

Your Luck Didn't Last

While I was away in Myanmar (Burma), PERS sent out letters to those people it thinks are not eligible for continuance of the income tax subsidy.  Predictibly, a few long-time Oregonians were caught in the dragnet and they are busily trying to get PERS to undo their mistake.  Worse, in my last message before leaving for Myanmar, I had specifically emailed PERS to clarify what the effective date of the change would be.  I posted, based on PERS’ response, that the first check to be affected by the change would be the check received on February 1, 2014 (for January 2014).  However, the same letters out-of-staters received while I was gone tell retirees that the effective date will be the check received on January 1 (or 2nd), 2014.  So, I must apologize if the information I provided in my last post misled anyone.  I am trying to get clarification from PERS now, and I will update this post if I hear anything that either supports my original post or contradicts it.  In the meantime, I am profoundly sorry that my post might have been misleading.  I thought I had the information correct (and I confirmed it by rereading the email PERS sent me).


UPDATE:  I just heard back from PERS.  The official start date for the reduction in benefits due to loss of the Income Tax subsidies (SB 656 or HB 3349) is for the check to be received on JANUARY 1, 2014.  The original date I posted did NOT come to me via a direct communication with PERS.  I should have followed my usual course of action to “trust, but verify”, but in this case I relied on information gleaned from a usually reliable source who had posed this question to three different PERS Customer Service representatives.  In my haste of getting ready for my trip, I did not follow this up with a clarifying or confirming email to PERS.  I accept total responsibility for my failure to verify and apologize profusely to anyone seriously misled by this information.  It did not come from an “official” PERS source, but I do believe that this information came from PERS representatives who were not looped in on the conversation.  Again, my apologies.