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February 2011

February 2011

ORTA ALERT January 14, 2011

It is time to contact STRS Executive Director Mike
Nehf & all STRS Board members, particularly Retired
STRS Board Members Jim McGreevy & Bob Stein to
let them know that you do not support any further
reductions in the COLA. The original STRS proposal
reduced the COLA from 3 – 2% for current retirees &
1½% for future retirees. The amended proposal
(10/10) kept the 2% COLA for current retirees & future retirees (who would
wait for 3 years before receiving it).
Note: The COLA affects not only current, but future retirees. So we are
asking for no further reduction from the 2% COLA for everyone’s bene-
The STRS Board needs to vote on a new pension proposal that meets the
30 years funding requirement & does not include an employer contribution
increase. A STRS proposal & vote is expected by the end of January.
Please continue to check the ORTA and STRS web-sites for information.
Ann Hanning, ORTA Executive Director

E-mail Addresses:
STRS Ex. Director Mike Nehf
Ret. Bd. Member Jim McGreevy
Ret. Bd. Member Bob Stein
Written correspondence should be sent to: State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio
275 E. Broad St. Columbus, OH 43215-3771

Important Pension News

After months of working on various scenarios to bring
STRS funding to a solvent position, STRS learned in the
past few days that a plan must be presented that allows
for 30-year solvency for the pension system with no addi-
tional contributions from local school districts. None of
the earlier plans fit this model. STRS has quickly gone
into a revamping of the plan to meet the new criteria. You
Where’s the sun- can see the present scenarios by visiting
shine? The information is posted in the members-only area. At
stake is our Cost of Living Increase (COLA). To voice
your opinions about the status of the COLA you are be-
ing asked to contact STRS. Contact information is on the
front page of this publication.

Mike Nehf Writes to the Columbus Dispatch

Please take
To the Editor:
time to
The Columbus Dispatch is correct in that the Ohio Legislature
contact STRS
should reform public pensions, as noted in its Jan. 10 editorial. In
and tell them
September 2009, the Board of the State Teachers Retirement System
that you want of Ohio (STRS Ohio) adopted a plan to do just that and is hopeful
to keep at action by the Legislature can be taken soon so the board may begin
least part of implementing the changes. The Retirement Board’s plan recognizes
your COLA! that all of us are living longer and increases both the retirement age
and reduces benefits for current and future retired teachers. These
changes will help put the pensions on a sustainable path. One point
of clarification: The editorial stated that teachers “often have con-
tributed less of their pay to their retirements” than private sector
workers. In fact, public educators in Ohio do not pay into Social Se-
curity, but instead currently pay 10% of their salary to STRS Ohio
(versus 6.2% of wages for employees paying into Social Security).
Based on the support we have received from our major education
constituency groups for the Retirement Board’s plan, we know that
Ohio educators are willing to make necessary changes to preserve
their pensions.
Mike Nehf, Ex. Dir. STRS Ohio
Michael J. Nehf, Executive Director STRS Ohio
275 E. Broad St. Columbus, OH 43215-3771

One Retirement Board Seat Up for Election in 2011

In spring 2011, an election for one contributing member seat on
the State Teachers Retirement Board will be held. Taiyia Hayden
currently holds the seat. Her four-year term ends on Aug. 31,
The election process begins this fall, when individuals interested
in running for this seat can request petitions from STRS Ohio.
Those eligible for nomination are individuals presently contribut-
ing to STRS Ohio or those who have contributions on deposit
with STRS Ohio. STRS Ohio retirees who are reemployed in an
STRS Ohio-covered position are not eligible for nomination.
Individuals interested in running for this seat can request peti-
tions from STRS Ohio by calling toll-free 1-888-227-7877. The
deadline for returning petitions is Feb. 25, 2011. STRS Ohio
members will receive their ballots and voting information in
April; they will have through May 2 to cast their vote. The win-
ner of the election will begin his or her four-year term on the
“Perhaps it
board on Sept. 1, 2011.
would be a
good idea for
our groups to
On the Local Front think about
having an STRS

This month we decided to make a change in our meeting Rep come to

location. Both restaurants in town have adequate room for our county to
us and since most of us have been enduring the long win- speak to us
ter days looking at the same surroundings, perhaps a about the
change of scene for our meeting was in order, too. It is changes.”
good to support all of our local businesses. Thus, the
change for this month.
Perhaps it would be a good idea for our group to think
about having an STRS representative come to Noble
County to speak to us AND our active teachers. Actives
are going to be facing a lot of changes when they retire
and talking to staff from STRS could ease a lot of tensions.
The Retirement Planning Committee, headed by Lana
Anderson along with Cathy Neuhart, Deno Capello and
Jane Barnett might look into this. We could possibly work
it out with one of the high schools to have this meeting di-
rectly after school so that teachers nearing retirement
might attend. This is something to think about for spring.
Noble County RTA

At this meeting you will receive the new 2011-

2012 Membership Booklet containing the upcom-
ing committees, officers and meeting dates.

Please continue to invite active teachers to join

us as associate members. The cost is $5 per
year. Associate members enjoy all the benefits
of our organizations. The only exception is vot-
ing rights.

Dues are payable to :

Dee Frakes, Sec.-Treas.

53664 Seneca Lake Rd.
Senecaville Oh 43780

Those Who Can’t Be Here

Over the holidays, many of us visited with our members
who are now shut-in. Wilma Jordan is at home and so en-
joys being there. Eleanor Sanford is also at home and
has good and bad days. Edna Wiley is at Summit Acres
as is Eleanor Moore. Please continue to remember these
faithful teachers with an occasional visit or card.
Mark your calendar! Please visit the websites at and for cur-
rent news happenings about the legislature, the ORSC
and our pensions.
The president would like to express his appreciation to all committee chairs who
so willingly prepared their annual reports to be sent to Columbus. Thank you so