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OPM hopes to solve retirement claims backlog with more staff
Government Executive    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The government's human resources chief recently acknowledged his agency does not yet have an information technology plan to successfully tackle the major backlog of federal retirement claims. Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry told Senate lawmakers that the OPM is working hard to get to a place where federal employees' retirement information is automated, but said the government is "still in a paper-pencil world." More

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Bill would prohibit step increases for feds through 2012
Government Executive    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A House lawmaker has introduced a bill that would prohibit step increases for federal employees, who currently are subject to a pay freeze. The provision, tucked into larger legislation aimed at improving transparency within the appropriations process, would prevent federal workers from receiving within-grade step increases through the end of 2012. If enacted, it would mean extra pain for federal employees during the second year of the federal pay freeze. More

House, Senate reach agreement on FAA bill
Government Executive    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The House and the Senate have reached agreement on a bill that funds the Federal Aviation Administration through 2015. The legislation authorizes $63 billion for the FAA over the next four years. More

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Costly financial mistakes retirees make repeatedly
The Courier-Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Despite the best of intentions, retirees tend to make the same money mistakes over and over. Repeating the same scenario isn't all unpleasant. You can learn to play the piano, speak French, ice sculpt, or go out to a lot of nice dinners and more. But eventually, you're going to run into trouble if you don't break the pattern of financial neglect. The money simply may not hold up in the long run. More



Lack of sunlight may raise stroke risk
HealthDay News via Everyday Health    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The amount of sunlight you are exposed to might play a part in determining your stroke risk, new research suggests. "We hear a lot about how sun may be bad for us in terms of skin cancer, for example," noted study co-author Leslie McClure, an associate professor of biostatistics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. "But this examination of sunlight exposure indicates that there may be some positive results related to being in the sun." More

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The top 11 ways more mature workers may land jobs
The Herald News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Being laid off in today's economy can be burdensome for anyone. However, for older adults — many of whom worked the same job for decades and were counting on doing so until retirement — layoffs can be even tougher. Those who have not had to update their rèsumès since they landed their first jobs may have little idea what employers are looking for. More



Hippie retirement: High-end 'communes'
SmartMoney    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
After spending nearly three decades in St. Louis, Kathyrn McKay says she was ready to relocate to a "more progressive" city. On a visit to Boulder, Colo., the then-57-year-old retiree found just that, though the living arrangement wasn't what she had expected: a so-called co-housing complex for adults called Silver Sage. "I loved the sense of community I felt there," she says. Co-housing projects for older Americans, communities of homes on shared land that residents build and operate themselves, are on the rise. More

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8 travel tips for retirees
The Street    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Many people dream of seeing the world once they retire, but sometimes limitations from poor health and a fixed income make finding the perfect trip difficult. While these problems can sometimes prevent retirees from realizing all of their travel ambitions, there are plenty of safe and fun travel opportunities available to seniors. More



Debunking the hype over ID theft
Consumer Reports    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Almost 50 million people subscribed to some form of identity-theft protection in 2010. Those services, which cost about $120 to $300 a year, promise to protect your ID by monitoring your credit reports 24/7, scouring "black-market chat rooms" for your personal information, removing your name from marketing lists and filing fraud alerts. Some throw in up to $1 million in insurance. It's been found that these protection plans provide questionable value. And some promoters of these services have been slapped by the Federal Trade Commission for misleading sales practices and false claims. More

Welcome mat widens at AFVW

AFVW, AKA Air Force Village West, a community for those 60 years or better in Riverside, CA., now welcomes government employees and their spouses. Call to learn more about the new Incentive Value Program.

(800) 729-2999 or visit www.afvw.com.
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Did OPM make a mistake on my 1099-R?
NARFE    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Question: I think the Office of Personnel Management made a couple of mistakes on my 1099-R for 2011. If I multiply the health benefits premium I paid each month by 12, I get a different amount than what appears on my 1099-R. The same thing is true with the amount of my federal tax withholding. It is not much of a difference in either case, but I'm sure OPM is wrong. More

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NARFE to Senate: Eliminating retirement claims backlog is 'urgent'
NARFE    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
NARFE President Joseph A. Beaudoin told a Senate subcommittee Feb. 1 that eliminating the backlog of retirement claims at the Office of Personnel Management is "urgent." As of Dec. 31, OPM had a backlog of 48,375 claims, Beaudoin pointed out, with an average process time of more than five months. "The effect of such long delays on new federal retirees is obvious and serious," Beaudoin testified before the Senate Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management, the Federal Workforce and the District of Columbia. "They must 'make do' while waiting to receive the full amount they have earned. The wait is too long, and the uncertainty is too much, particularly in the current economy." Also appearing at the hearing was OPM Director John Berry. To view a webcast of the hearing, click here. For the full text of Beaudoin's testimony, click here.

NARFE calls to action and reminder about 'Call Congress Day,' Feb. 15
NARFE    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
NARFE President Joseph A. Beaudoin asks each NARFE member to save the date of Wednesday, Feb. 15 for NARFEs "Call Congress Day." For step-by-step instructions on how to call and what to say, click here. In the meantime, Beaudoin is calling on NARFE members to contact their congressional delegations on two issues of immediate concern:
  1. A House-Senate conference committee is considering a proposal to pay for the payroll tax holiday through cuts to federal pay and benefits. To send a message to oppose any plan that unfairly targets federal workers and retirees, click here.
  2. The Senate may take up controversial legislation to overhaul the U.S. Postal Service, S. 1789, as early as this week. This legislation includes a NARFE-opposed provision to drastically change the Federal Employees' Compensation Act. For the text of a letter to send to your senators, click here.


Are you a member of NARFE? If not, join today!
The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association is the only organization dedicated solely to protecting and enhancing the health care and retirement benefits of federal employees and their survivors.



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NARFE NewsWatch from the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association
Disclaimer: The articles that appear in NARFE NewsWatch are chosen from a variety of sources to reflect topics of interest to active and retired federal employees. With the exception of Federal Benefits Question of the Week and News From NARFE, an article's inclusion in NARFE NewsWatch does not imply that the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) endorses, supports or verifies its contents or expressed opinions. Factual errors are the responsibility of the listed publication.

Colby Horton, vice president of publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
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