OPERS pharmaceutical video series debuts

Rising prescription drug costs is a big concern for retirees of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System.

A new, monthly video series will provide viewers with insights into the prescription drug market and examine the role that pharmaceuticals play in the overall cost of health care. The videos will feature Brian Lehman, OPERS’ pharmacy benefits and policy manager.

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OPERS closed on Thanksgiving, day after

As a reminder to members and retirees, the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and the day after Thanksgiving.

The OPERS offices are open on Wednesday, but our lobby hours will close at 1:30 p.m., and phone lines will close at 2:30 p.m. that day. Normal hours will resume on Monday.

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Ohio House passes bill to assist OPERS members

The Ohio House has passed legislation that would improve survivor benefits and facilitate contribution refunds for members of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System.

Ohio House Bill 520 includes provisions that would affect all five state retirement systems. It contains several adjustments to the 2012 pension law that are intended to streamline business practices and improve administrative efficiency.

The bill now moves on to the Ohio Senate.

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Posted in Government Relations, Ohio PERS, OPERS, Pensions | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Update: Medicare rate increase lower than estimates

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced it will increase 2017 Part B premiums for most OPERS members by $12 per month beginning in January, significantly less than original projections.

This month, the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System asked our members and retirees to contact their Congressional representatives and ask them to prevent what could have been a $28 monthly increase for the Part B premiums. Part B covers some medical supplies, doctor’s visits and outpatient services.

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Posted in Connector, Ohio PERS, OPERS, OPERS Medicare Connector | Tagged , , | 19 Comments

Action required to limit Medicare Part B rate increase

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System is asking members and retirees to contact their Congressional representatives and ask them to prevent a 20 percent rate hike for Medicare Part B premiums.

Let your senators and representatives know today that OPERS retirees should not be expected to bear the entire cost of any increase in Medicare Part B premiums.

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Posted in Pensions | 33 Comments

Member Services experiencing long hold times

The OPERS Member Services center is experiencing extremely high call volumes, with long wait times for members trying to reach us. We apologize if you have been inconvenienced.

If you are calling in response to the dependent verification letter you might have received from OPERS, remember you also can complete the form and mail it to us in the self-addressed stamped envelope. If you have no dependents to report, just note that on the form.

If you are calling regarding Open Enrollment, please note that it runs through Dec. 7.

Thanks for your patience.

Posted in Benefits | 29 Comments

Brown wins 11th annual OPERS leadership award

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System annually recognizes one employee for practicing the leadership qualities of one of its former leaders.

The Neil V. Toth Leadership Award is given in honor of Toth, the system’s chief investment officer from 2000-05 before passing away from cancer at age 43. Toth epitomized quality management during his 15-year OPERS career, further building our system to one of the most respected in the country.

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OPERS adapts to changing investment environment

Like many other pension plans, the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System is reducing its investment return expectations because of changes in the global economy.

This adjustment in OPERS’ expected rate of return is part of our continuing effort to keep our pension plan healthy and sustainable, and is part of a rigid review cycle. The changes that OPERS made in 2012 to our pension and health care funds strengthened our system and allowed us to lower our expected returns now.

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Posted in Pensions | 5 Comments

Retirement security week stresses planning

Ohio Deferred Compensation is holding free webinars on various retirement planning topics to recognize National Retirement Security Week. Public employees are encouraged to consider their retirement goals this week and track their progress toward meeting them.

In response, the Ohio Public Employees Deferred Compensation Program will hold webinars on several topics:

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Posted in Benefits, Ohio PERS, OPERS, Saving for retirement | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

OPERS video: Investments drive our success

The Investments division of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System skillfully manages more than $87 billion that is used to pay our members’ pension benefits and provide retirees access to health care coverage.

This video presents an overview of how the OPERS investment team approaches its task, seeking solid returns while maintaining transparency in all of its actions.

Prudent management of the OPERS investment portfolio for the long term allows us to achieve our No. 1 goal: Provide retirement security for our members.

Posted in Benefits, Investments, Ohio PERS, OPERS | Tagged , , | 7 Comments