OPERS offers several ways to contact us

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System maintains a fully staffed Member Services Department that fields hundreds of thousands of calls each year.

OPERS members reach out to us for help on dozens of issues including benefit payments, retirement status and health care eligibility. Our representatives and counselors are available at our headquarters in Columbus, over the phone and via email.

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OPERS certifies candidates for board election

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has certified six people to run for three positions on the OPERS Board of Trustees in this year’s election.

Incumbent Municipal Employee representative Ken Thomas was unopposed following the deadline for candidates to submit nominating petitions. He will take office for a new term beginning on Jan. 1.

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OPERS explains health care changes

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has updated its education tools to help retirees plan for upcoming health care changes.

A new video explaining the OPERS Medicare Connector is now available online.

To help retirees plan for the Connector which starts in 2016, OPERS Health Care Director Marianne Steger is conducting seminars around Ohio. The new video features Steger’s presentation explaining the Connector model.

In addition, OPERS retirees will soon receive either an e-mail with a direct link to the video or a DVD containing Ms. Steger’s presentation. The 33-minute presentation can also be accessed through the OPERS home page at www.opers.org and OPERS’ YouTube Channel. You can access the video directly by clicking here.

Retirees who are eligible for Medicare Parts A & B will use the Connector to select a plan that will supplement traditional Medicare. As the video demonstrates, the Connector gives OPERS retirees affordable health care choices.

Posted in Health Care | 21 Comments

Public pensions create economic vitality

Contributions to public pension systems in Ohio and throughout the United States have a positive impact on the economy, the National Institute on Retirement Security said in a report.

In “Pensionomics 2014,” NIRS found that state and local pensions support 6.2 million jobs and $943 billion in economic activity nationwide. This is stable revenue that states and municipalities can count on year after year.

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OPERS to hold Connector meetings around Ohio

Our members have sent us lots of questions about the 2016 OPERS Medicare Connector, and we’d like to provide the answers.

Beginning next week, OPERS Health Care Director Marianne Steger will conduct a series of seminars around Ohio targeted to this new feature of our health care plan. Retirees of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System who are eligible for Medicare Parts A & B will use the Connector to select a plan that will supplement traditional Medicare.

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Qualifying members have earned QEBA checks

In rare cases, members of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System contribute more to their pensions than the IRS permits to be considered in determining pension benefits. In these situations, the IRS and the state of Ohio permit the creation of Qualified Excess Benefits Arrangements (QEBA) to distribute the difference.

A recent letter printed in The Columbus Dispatch focused on the QEBA. We’d like to explain how these arrangements work.

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Medicare Connector to lower health care costs

As the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System prepares to transition eligible members to a Medicare Connector model in 2016, a closer look at the projected participant costs illustrates advantages of the new plan.

By transitioning to the Connector, we are presenting participants increased flexibility and an opportunity to save money while keeping the same level of, or better, health care coverage.

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Valuation helps Board set contribution rates

The funding level, amortization rate and other key financial measures of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System were confirmed during the recent annual pension actuarial valuation.

Our external actuaries, Gabriel Roeder Smith & Co., presented the preliminary results for 2013 during the May meeting of the OPERS Board of Trustees. The valuation is a measure of our financial position, which the Board uses to help establish employer and employee contribution rates.

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OPERS releases latest annual financial reports

The Ohio Public Employees Retirement System has published updated versions of its key financial reports.

The 2013 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, and a condensed version called the 2013 Summary Annual Financial Report, are available on the OPERS website. They contain vital financial, investment, actuarial and statistical information about our retirement system as of the end of 2013.

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Video focuses on Medicare Connector allowances

With the introduction of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System’s Medicare Connector in 2016, OPERS will provide eligible retirees with a monthly allowance to purchase a plan on the individual Medicare market.

At its June meeting, the OPERS Board of Trustees approved monthly allowance amounts for the Connector. In our latest health care video, OPERS Health Care Director Marianne Steger discusses the newly approved allowances, as well as other relevant topics, including:

  • The Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) that members will use to pay their premiums
  • Types of Medicare plans and how much they might cost
  • How the HRA can be used if there’s money left over at the end of the month
  • How we’ll be communicating news of the Connector to you

You can click here to watch the Connector allowance video.

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