We’re YOUR organization!
Focused Strictly on Retirees
Run by Retirees
Protect Retiree Benefits
Work to Improve Retiree Benefits
Mobilize Retirees (When Needed)
REAOC BOARD OF OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS
The REAOC Board will still continue to meet on a monthly basis although we will follow the CDC guidelines and not meet in person. Our Board meetings will continue to be held on the 2nd Wednesday of each month and we will utilize the online Zoom platform. If you have any issues or questions you would like to have us discuss, please contact the REAOC office at (714) 840-3995.
REAL ID DELAYED
Due to circumstances resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and the national emergency declaration, the Department of Homeland Security, as directed by President Donald J. Trump, is extending the REAL ID enforcement deadline beyond the current October 1, 2020 deadline. They will grant a one-year extension, until Oct. 1, 2021.
Click here to read the press release from the Federal Homeland Security.
Click here to read the LA Times story regarding the REAL ID delay.
SPECIAL SENIOR SHOPPING HOURS
During this time of the COVID-19 virus, it is especially crucial to follow the requests of the local and State governments to stay home and to maintain social distance. Many of us find that we still need to go to the grocery stores as well as pharmacies. As you may have heard, many of these retailers are creating special hours for seniors as well as others in the population who are vulnerable to becoming ill due to this virus. REAOC has prepared a listing of the stores that are allowing special shopping hours, days, etc. for this population and will update the list as we obtain new information. These listings are intended to assist our members. As a safeguard we request you check with your local store to verify this information before you go. This information is subject to change as situations arise and is beyond our control.
Please click here to see this listing.
CALIFORNIA STAY AT HOME ORDER
Governor Newsom issued at “Stay at Home” order on March 19, 2020. To read what this means to all of us, click here.
Along with this order, the LA Times published an excellent article entitled “California calls on millions of senior citizens to stay home because of coronavirus. What you need to know.” To read this helpful article, click here.
IMPORTANT MESSAGES FROM THE HEALTH PLANS REGARDING TELEHEALTH
Several of the health plans have shared information regarding telephone appointments during this crisis. Please follow-up with your individual health plan if you have any questions.
Click here to see the Kaiser telehealth information.
Click here to see the Scan telehealth information.
Click here to see the Anthem telehealth information.
Click here to see the Anthem information regarding COVID-19
CORONA VIRUS INFORMATION
The County of Orange prepared an excellent resource about caring for older adults during this pandemic. Click here to read this document.
Click here to see the County of Orange, Emergency Operations Center Press Release regarding assistance for Seniors. Older adults and/or their families are encouraged to call the Office on Aging information and assistance call center at (800) 510-2020 for assistance. This service is for those who live in Orange County.
OC Health Care Agency Support
OCERS has provided an update on their website regarding the impact to them from the corona virus. You can click here to find the latest information.
You are encouraged to utilized the “myOCERS portal” on their website to help you with your issues and to limit the direct telephone calls if at all possible. REAOC is in frequent contact with OCERS. OCERS has ensured that pension checks will be issued as expected.
In light of the unknown facts and drivers surrounding the Coronavirus REAOC strongly believes caution is of utmost importance when it comes to the health of our membership. This is a challenging time for us all. Being mindful of recommendations by health experts to avoid crowds, the REAOC Board of Directors unanimously agreed that cancelling the upcoming luncheon is the most pro-active, appropriate action to take at this time. We will continue to update our website, www.reaoc.org, with information as changes develop. Due to time limitations when producing our Informer newsletter, there will still be references to the March luncheon. Please note that the luncheons have been cancelled for both March and May.
UPDATE ON THE CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT
GAYLAN HARRIS, JERRY JAHN, AND JAMES MCCONNELL ON BEHALF OF THEMSELVES AND OTHERS SIMILARLY SITUATED
COUNTY OF ORANGE,
The California County Retirees Employee Association (CRCEA) filed an Amicus Brief in the Central District Court of California related to the above class action lawsuit. They have stated:
THE COUNTY OF ORANGE’S ACTIONS VIOLATED THE MMBA AND CANNOT STAND.
The CRCEA submits this amicus brief to underscore a critical point-the beneficial purposes of the 52-year-old provisions of the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act (MMBA) will be substantially weakened if this Court were to affirm the district court. By unilaterally preparing and adopting the 1993 Plan Document, the County of Orange violated the MMBA and its primary goals. Any result other than reversal of the summary judgment would substantially weaken very successful and important legislation which has helped keep labor peace in the California public sector for more than one-half of a century.
The CRCEA urges this Court to reverse the summary judgment
and remand the case for trial on the merits.
Please click here to read the full Amicus Brief for the class action lawsuit.
Please click here to read the Opening Brief of Appellates.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY WITHIN THE ORANGE COUNTY TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY
OCTA is recruiting applicants for the Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) and the Taxpayer Oversight Committee (TOC). We need your help to find civically engaged residents who want to make a difference in the community.
Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) is looking for new committee members for two public committees. The committees: Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) and the Taxpayer Oversight Committee (TOC). These committees help advise OCTA on a wide range of policies, procedures, and actions. OCTA strongly encourages residents and community leaders to get involved and help improve the quality of life for all Orange County residents.
The Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) actively participates in helping examine traffic solutions, providing input to OCTA’s transportation studies and communicating with their constituencies. Committee members also participate in roundtable discussions and hear special presentations on various transportation projects, programs, and services. CAC applications are available here and are due on May 1.
The Taxpayer Oversight Committee (TOC) is an independent 11-member committee that monitors OCTA’s use of revenue collected through OC GO (also known as Measure M), the county’s half-cent sales tax for transportation improvements. Members of the TOC work to ensure the transportation projects specified in OC Go are built as promised. There are open positions in the Second and Third Supervisorial Districts. TOC applications are available here and are due May 1.
Applications must be received by May 1 and for more information, contact Jared Hill at (714) 560-5680 or email@example.com.
The Board is expected to select members by the end of June.
Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)
At the Orange County Employees Retirement System (OCERS) Board meeting on February 10, 2020, a COLA was approved! For 2020, the COLA is 3 percent. This is based upon a change in the CPI of 3.07 percent which was rounded to 3 percent as is required by statute and provides that a maximum COLA of 3 percent be granted. OCERS will increase applicable benefit allowances by 3 percent. The COLA adjustment will appear on the May 1st check.
When your contact information has changed
If you move, get a new or change your e-mail address or telephone or if you have a name change, there are actions that are necessary so that you continue to receive your benefits, newsletters, e-mails, etc.
If any of the above pertains to you, you need to notify REAOC, the Orange County Employees’ Retirement System (OCERS) and the County of Orange Employee Benefits Center with the new information.
To contact REAOC – call (714) 840-3995 or click here to e-mail with the new/changed information.
To contact OCERS – call (714) 558-6200 or click here to go to their website and sign-into “MyOCERS” to update your information.
To contact the County of Orange Employee Benefits Center – call (800) 858-7266 or click here to go to the benefits website.
REAOC Informer Newsletter
Click here to read the latest Informer newsletter.
CRCEA Intercom Newsletter
Click here to read the latest newsletter from the California Retired County Employees Association (CRCEA).
Click here to read the notes from the Spring 2019 CRCEA conference.
NEWS WEEK OF MARCH 30, 2020
Empty Beaches on a beautiful day in OC
The Orange County Register ran a front page story on Friday, March 27 about the lack of people at the beach and the breathtakingly clear air due to the weather and the lack of pollution from vehicles on the road and large ships headed to nearby Long Beach. Click below for the article and then click on the arrows on the side of the photo for an assortment of drone aerial photos that tell the story of a beautiful day at the beach with no people. (More)
Misinformation heightens coronavirus fears
A Governing article reports that as COVID-19 spreads across the world, a new virus is brewing and spreading like wildfire. From miraculous cures, to paranoid conspiracies, misinformation about the coronavirus has been going viral at such a disturbing rate that data and health scientists have deemed it an “infodemic. “ (More)
Columnist – Crisis reveals big financial shortcomings
Columnist Dan Walters begins his column with “The rapidly expanding COVID-19 pandemic threatens the lives and livelihoods of Californians, but it also lays bare some multi-billion-dollar shortcomings in state government finances that have been ignored for decades, despite many warnings. The most obvious is the state budget’s unhealthy reliance on taxing the incomes of a relative handful of wealthy Californians. Income taxes generate about 70% of the state’s general fund revenues and about half of those taxes are paid by the 1% of Californians atop the income scale.” Walters also focuses on the issue of pension funding in this piece. (More)
Columnist – CalPERS unprepared for coronavirus recession
The Mercury News carried this column by Bay Area columnist Daniel Bornstein in which he begins by saying “State residents could face higher taxes or reduced government services because more than $41 billion of investment losses this year have left the California Public Employees’ Retirement System at nearly the same precarious funding level reached during the Great Recession.” (More)
US Public Pensions Lose $1 Trillion from Market Crash
The Chief Investment Officer site provides this story on the impact of the stock market decline on public sector pensions, and notes that “Moody’s says governments are in a worse position to smooth costs than during financial crises.” (More)
Santa Barbara pension system takes a big hit
Noozhawk reports that the county employees’ pension fund “lost about 13 percent of its value between Jan. 31 and March 16, dropping from about $3.3 billion to about $2.87 billion. The losses are about 10 percent going back to the beginning of the fiscal year on July 1, 2019.” (More)
Opinion – States need coronavirus relief for pensions and health care
Bloomberg news published his opinion piece by a Rockefeller Institute of Government fellow writes that the “$2 trillion stimulus bill includes relief for individuals, families and businesses limping through the current slowdown, it’s barely going to dent the impending budget increase for state and local governments. Medicaid and retiree pension costs — already the two most problematic spending areas for governments — will balloon as result of the Covid-19 crisis. Congress can help with both.” (More)
Is a federal pension bailout possible in this environment?
This article at Forbes mentions the possibility. (More)
China Concealed Extent of Virus Outbreak, U.S. Intelligence Says
Bloomberg News reports that “China has concealed the extent of the coronavirus outbreak in its country, under-reporting both total cases and deaths it’s suffered from the disease, the U.S. intelligence community concluded in a classified report to the White House, according to three U.S. officials.” The article says the federal analysis found the Chinese data incomplete, and two officials branded the Chinese data as fake. Vice President Pence is quoted as saying the US would be better off if China had been more forthcoming and one US Senator is quoted as saying the concealment of actual case numbers by China means that “The claim that the United States has more coronavirus deaths than China is false.” (See also next story.) (More)
China Rejects U.S. Intelligence Claim It Hid Virus Numbers
Bloomberg News also reported that “China rejected the American intelligence community’s conclusion that Beijing concealed the extent of the coronavirus epidemic and accused the U.S. of seeking to shift the blame for its own handling of the outbreak.” (See also previous story.) (More)
Coronavirus recession now expected to be deeper and longer
This Los Angeles Times story reports what many of us know – the recession is world-wide and big. (More)
ABOUT OUR LUNCHEONS
REAOC luncheons are held for the purpose of bringing Orange County retirees together for an afternoon of camaraderie, entertainment, and information. Friends and family are always welcome! Each luncheon features a different theme, with door prizes, and special gifts. As an added bonus, there is a valuable Progressive Drawing. They also serve as a general meeting for the membership.
The Mile Square Park Banquet Facility located at 10401 Warner Ave., Fountain Valley, California, 92708. For directions, call the Mile Square Banquet Facility at (714) 962-5541 or see map below showing where the Facility is located. Please DO NOT call the Facility to make reservations. Reservations are made by sending in the reservation form in The Informer or by calling the REAOC office at (714) 840-3995.
Luncheons are held the 4th Wednesday of January, March, May and September, and on the first Wednesday of December at Noon. To ensure a parking spot please arrive by 11 a.m. Please carpool if possible as the parking lot at this facility can be quite busy.
Cost for the luncheon is $17.00 per person. A reservation form is provided in The Informer (on the current Luncheon page), in the “Forms” section of the REAOC web site or you may email the REAOC office of your request (firstname.lastname@example.org).
HEMET CHAPTER LUNCHEONS
Luncheons in Hemet have been traditionally held on the second Tuesday during the months of February, April, June, October and December. Attendees arrive around 11:30 a.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in the Fellowship Hall located at 515 E. Kimball Avenue in Hemet and lunch is served between 11:45 and noon. The cost is $9.50 per person. The Hemet Chapter would like new members and encourages all REAOC members who live in the area or within driving distance to join them for the luncheons.
Please Note: The April 21 and June 16 luncheons have been cancelled. In light of the unknown facts and drivers surrounding the Coronavirus REAOC strongly believes caution is of utmost importance when it comes to the health of our membership. This is a challenging time for us all. Being mindful of recommendations by health experts to avoid crowds, the REAOC Board of Directors unanimously agreed that cancelling the upcoming luncheons is the most pro-active, appropriate action to take at this time.
REAOC’s Hemet Chapter will hold its next luncheon on Tuesday, October 20th at 11:30 AM at the First Presbyterian Church.
Make your reservation for the next luncheon by calling Mary Little at 951-485-7738 or Jane Pabitzky at 951-237-3240 by no later than October 6, 2020.
Below is a map showing the general location of the Mile Square Park Banquet Facility located at 10401 Warner Ave., Fountain Valley, California 92708.
If you need exact directions from your house you can go to MapQuest and click on “driving directions.”
HEALTH PLAN RATES FOR 2020
Please click on the links below for the charts provided by the County for the 2020 Health Plan rates:
Click here for the retiree PPO rates
Click here for the retiree HMO rates
For information about the supplemental insurance including dental and vision coverage, please click on the link below.
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