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Legislative Issues

Important Announcement from MPERS and Subsequent Informational Meetings in your Area!
Edit File Delete File Updated On: Mar 01, 2013
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http://www.mainepers.org/Pensions/Proposed-Legislation.htm

Below is an IMPORTANT Announcement from MPERS in regards to informational meetings being held to receive input on legislative changes being recommended by MPERS to the Municipal PLD's (Participating Local Districts) Please POST/share/forward this information as there is registration required to attend the informational meetings in three different areas in the state. This information was sent to all municipalities but it seems that word was not passed down. MAP is just being made aware of it this afternoon. For those in the AUGUSTA area the informational meeting is THIS WEEK on FEB. 28TH. Please act immediately in sharing and acting on this information as this is extremely important information affecting your MPERS retirement. Thank yo and stay safe, Paul Gaspar.


Please join us for informational meetings to share information about actions being recommended by the Participating Local District Advisory Committee (PLD Committee) which were submitted to the Legislature in January, 2013.

The PLD Committee continuously monitors the Consolidated Plan for Participating Local Districts (PLD Plan) to protect the plan’s fiscal health and responsiveness to employer and member needs.  Participating employer and employee committee members are unanimously recommending modernization of benefit provisions for newly hired plan members, changes in cost-of-living-adjustments (COLAs), and employee and employer rate increases.

Employer rates are scheduled to return to their original level of 8% by 2015. The remaining recommendations are a result of a multi-year review by the committee of the Plan’s funding level, which currently is  87% funded as of June 30, 2012.  PLD Committee members requested and reviewed a cost report prepared by MainePERS and unanimously agreed that actions beyond employer rate increases are needed to maintain the strong fiscal condition of this plan. Members further agreed any actions should be consistent with good retirement plan management, benefit design, and shared by employers, employees and beneficiaries or retirees.

MainePERS, with the support of committee members has scheduled a series of meetings to share information about the following changes that were recommended to the 126th Maine State Legislature:

For New Members to the Plan:

    •  Normal retirement age of 65 [1]

    •  Early retirement reduction factor increases from approximately 2.25% to 6% [2]

For all PLD Members:

    •  Post-retirement cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) become available after 12 months of retirement instead
       of six months [3]

    •  The post-retirement COLA cap changes from 4% to 3%.

The Committee further recommends that the MainePERS Board of Trustees:

Increase employee contributions by .5% for three years for a total of 1.5% beginning once the employer contribution rate has reached 8% in fiscal year 2015 and lasting until such time when the funding level of the plan justifies a decrease;

Increase the minimum employer rate to not less than 75% of the normal cost.

We will have more information coming soon to our website.

[1] Members who change employers within the PLD Plan would not be affected by this change.
[2] Members who change employers within the PLD Plan would not be affected by this change.
[3] This change will start 18 months after the effective date of legislation to avoid interfering with plans of
     members who are currently in the retirement process.


Download:
 PLD Proposed Legislation Notice.pdf

Special Announcement

On June 7th, Governor John Baldacci signed LD 499; "An Act Making Unified Appropriations and Allocations for the Expenditures of State Government, General Fund and Other Funds, and Changing Certain Provisions of the Law Necessary to the Proper Operations of State Government for the Fiscal Years Ending June 30, 2008 and June 30, 2009", the Maine state budget, into law after its 2/3 passage in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

This is a great day for the men and women of Maine’s public safety community. The bi-partisan support of the Governor’s budget ensures the funding for the retiree health care subsidy program known as LD 1021.

Through the hard work, perseverance and the belief that what we were doing was right, we were successful in passing LD 1021 into law. With the same commitment, we were successful in keeping the funding intact throughout the appropriations and budget process. In short, the past 30 months of this journey has resulted in health care for present and future police & fire retirees.

I’d like you to join me in thanking the Public Safety Coalition, which included the Professional Fire Fighters of Maine, Maine Fire/Police Chiefs’ Associations and members of the original Task Force. All were instrumental in the success of this campaign. But most of all, I’d like to thank Dick Wurfel, Bobby Reynolds, Ron Green, John Martell, Mike Williams (PFFM) and (Chief) Mike Lajoie all who went above and beyond in getting this benefit for all of us.

For those members who gave their time to support this effort by coming to Augusta and contacting their legislators; you have helped us get to where we are now, and you have my thanks. Your efforts were a major factor in the success of this campaign. Although there are too many to list in this letter, please know that your support is remembered.

We owe a debt of gratitude to John Richardson & Bob Duplessie who not only paved the way for this effort, but also led the 122nd legislature in recognizing the sacrifices that all police officers and firefighters make and fought for its passage. Also Governor Baldacci and his staff, who from the beginning, kept their word not, only in supporting this program, but making sure the funding stayed in the budget.

In addition, our thanks go to the current leadership of the legislature: Senate President Beth Edmonds, Speaker of the House Glen Cummings, House and Senate Majority Leaders; Hannah Pingree, Sean Faircloth, Elizabeth Mitchell and John Martin. Although there was opposition from the minority, I would also recognize Minority leader Josh Tardy for his commitment to finding a common ground between the parties to pass this budget.

Finally, I’d like to thank two members of the original task force that laid the foundation for this historic program; MAP Vice President Jim Fahey and Mike Williams of the South Portland Fire Command Unit. This has been an effort 5 years in the making and no one person can take credit for this success.

In closing, I would like to thank the Executive and Full Boards for supporting my efforts in Augusta, and the immense amount of time and resources that were required to successfully lobby this bill into law. Although there were some that said it could not be done, or would not be a benefit, I can only say that this has been a monumental step in providing an important piece of security to those who serve in public safety. It also has proven that with a common interest, we can work collaboratively with others in addressing the needs of those in public safety as well as the receiving the recognition they deserve.

Enjoy this victory,

Fraternally,

Paul Gaspar

MAP Executive Director



FAQ on LD 1021
Jun 16, 2013
LD 1021 / Public Law Chapter 636 Retired County and Municipal Law Enforcement Officers and Municipal Firefighters Health Insurance Program  FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT http://www.mmeht.org/benefit/retirees/QA.
Download: LD 1021.docx

Maine Senate kills bill to end concealed-weapon permits
Jun 13, 2013
Maine Senate kills bill to end concealed-weapon permits One Republican votes with Democrats to block the measure, 21-14. Written by Tom Bell, Staff Writer (Portland Press Herald) The Senate on Wednesday voted down a bill that would have removed the permit requirement for carrying a concealed firearm. The 21-14 vote effectively kills L.D.
Changes to Rule 41 of Maine Rules of Crim Procedure
Mar 21, 2013
Enclosed are proposed changes to Rule 41 (Search & Seizure) of the Maine Rules of Criminal Procedure.  The changes would allow a search warrant request to be made outside the presence of a Superior Court justice, District Court judges, or justice of the peace.  The proposals will be submitted to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court for its consideration no later than early next year.
Download: 11 16 2012 Revised Draft Rule 41 and New Rule 41C.pdf

Fireworks update 03-19-2013
Mar 21, 2013
AUGUSTA — A slate of bills that would place new restrictions on the sale and use of fireworks failed to launch Monday. Lawmakers on the Legislature's Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee tabled four bills that do everything from restrict the hours and dates fireworks could be used in Maine to set up fireworks-free zones around farms with livestock.


Page Last Updated: Jun 16, 2013 (17:48:09)
 
 
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