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To: Pension Recipients
From: Bill Stefka
Date: December 31, 2014
Re: COLA Approved/Election Results/Update

Dear Retirees:

COLA APPROVED FOR 2015! For the third year in a row we are pleased to report that the pension fund continues to remain healthy and can afford to grant another COLA to our eligible retirees! A 1.3% cost-of-living increase (COLA) has been approved for all eligible retirees, widows, and beneficiaries effective January 1, 2015 and will begin with the January 25, 2015 payroll. The annual inflation rate of the CPI-U (all items - which includes food and energy) index used by the fund was 1.3% and it had fallen recently due to energy prices at the pump. For newly retired firefighters, please remember according to our statute that COLA eligibility begins at the earlier of age 50 or reaching what would be your 25th anniversary in the pension plan. Also, the COLA may be prorated in some instances for firefighters who have been retired for less than the entire calendar year of 2014.

Don’t forget about the Public Safety Officers’ (PSO) deduction of up to $3,000 annually. (Also referred to as the HELPS Act, first responders, etc.) The IRS allows retired firefighters (public safety officers) to reduce their income up to a maximum of $3,000.00 based on the medical and/or dental as well as vision insurance premiums which are deducted directly from your retirement checks. This includes any insurance amounts deducted from your check for beneficiaries as well. Please remember this is a limit of up to $3,000.00 and your 1099R’s will not automatically reflect this exclusion. The instructions for taking this exclusion will probably be noted in the Form 1040 instructions as the “Public Safety Officer’s (PSO) adjustment. It is strongly advised that you consult with your tax advisor before completing your tax return with any questions you may have.

The pension board trustee election results are now in. The results were:

Keith Johnson 457
Write In’s 0

Congratulations to Keith Johnson on being elected to his third 3 year term on your pension board effective January 2015! The pension board and staff want to thank Keith for his dedication to the pension plan and the membership. The Board appreciates the entire membership, both active and retired, who participated in the election process.

During 2014 we lost the following retirees and widows:

Name Date Deceased Benevolent Fund? Spouse/Or Survivor
John H. Kieke (83) 1/1/14 Yes Yes/Vernille
Douglas D. Palmer (77) 2/17/14 Yes Yes/Dorothy
David L. Johnson (77) 2/23/14 No Yes/Barbara
David E. Smith (43)
(Active-With18 Years)
3/4/14 Yes Yes/Elishea
Lawrence A. Beach (74) 4/6/14 Yes Yes/Lillian
Edwin M. Almquist (66) 4/24/14 Yes Yes/Mary
Ronnie E. Roberts (64) 4/24/14 No Yes/Valerie
Maurice Simmons (90)
(Widow of Ernest)
5/8/14 N/A N/A
Nicole Jean Curry (71)
(Widow of Winifred (Kid)
6/19/14 N/A N/A
Agnes Edwards (90)
(Widow of Thurlow)
6/29/14 N/A N/A
Ronald E. O’Dell (55) 6/30/14 No N/A
Preble Davis (98)
(Widow of William)
7/9/14 N/A N/A
Gertrude Davis (90)
(Widow of Edward)
9/25/14 N/A N/A
Dorothy Keeler (95)
(Widow of Alton)
10/8/14 N/A N/A
W. Steven Massey (61) 10/11/14 Yes Yes/Jennie
John O. Carpenter (80) 12/19/14 Yes Yes/Janette
(Daughter)

As most of you know, we no longer collect monthly dues for the benevolent fund. Dues are now collected biannually from the member retirees as a deduction from your check, and the benevolent fund representatives will contact you directly with any further information or changes about the program. There is no need to make any payments to them until you are contacted directly by their representatives at which time we can deduct the biannual payment from your check.

If you have any questions, please contact our pension office. The pension board and staff wish all of you a Safe and Happy New Year!

Sincerely,
William E. Stefka
Administrator