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NEWS FROM NARFE

FEHBP Open Season ends Dec. 8
NARFE
Open Season for the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program will end Dec. 8. NARFE provides its members with complete information on FEHBP premium amounts for health and dental and vision plans in the November and December issues of narfe magazine, along with information sources and Open Season FAQs. Employees who do not receive Open Season information from their agencies should contact their personnel or administrative office. The Office of Personnel Management will provide information to most eligible annuitants, survivor annuitants and former spouse annuitants. Those who have not received their notices by now should contact OPM. Plans will not automatically send enrollees their 2015 brochure. You must request one or download it from the OPM website, www.opm.gov.
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Calling all NARFE photographers!
NARFE
Entries for next year's NARFE Photo Contest Calendar must be in by Feb. 15. All NARFE members (except those who work as professional photographers) are eligible to participate, whether or not they already have had a photo appear in past calendars. To view contest guidelines and entry rules on the NARFE website, go to www.narfe.org, log in as a member, then click on Special Programs at left. Send us your best shots!
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FEDERAL BENEFITS QUESTION OF THE WEEK


Social Security
NARFE
Question: I need 40 credits for retirement benefits, but I have only 32. Would I be able to buy the other eight credits that I need?
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FEDERAL UPDATE


TSP moves closer to offering mutual fund option
Government Executive
The agency that manages the Thrift Savings Plan moved a step forward Nov. 12 toward eventually allowing participants to invest some of their money in mutual funds of their choosing. Greg Long, executive director of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, will recommend that the board "conceptually support" creating a mutual fund window option for TSP enrollees in addition to the plan's current five core funds and five lifecycle offerings.
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McDonald unveils VA reorganization plan
FEDWeek
Having spent the first three months of his tenure at the Department of Veterans Affairs conducting a thorough personal review of operations, Secretary Robert McDonald unveiled his plans to reorganize the agency Nov. 10. Included are establishment of a departmentwide customer service organization headed by a chief customer service officer who would report directly to him.
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Why phased retirement may become the hottest boomer benefit
Time
Older federal workers will be able to work part-time before retiring. Other employers are likely to follow. Many boomers aren't ready to retire, but they're eager to leave behind the demands of the 40-hour workweek, let alone the 50-hour grind. Little wonder that the concept of phased retirement — gradually trimming back your workdays while holding onto some benefits — is growing in popularity.
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Postal employees' health care costs will rise far less than originally estimated
Government Executive
U.S. Postal Service employees and retirees received a scare in September when the Office of Personnel Management reported their share of their health care premiums would skyrocket nearly 19 percent in 2015. USPS, however, said the reality is not so bad.
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FINANCES


Here's a new reason to think twice before buying long-term care insurance
CNNMoney
It's one of the biggest risks in retirement, and it's one that hardly anyone is ready to face: long-term care costs. Some 70 percent of those over 65 end up needing some form of long-term care, which is likely to be costly.
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HEALTH


Study finds alternative to statins in preventing heart attacks and strokes
The New York Times
For the first time since statins have been regularly used, a large study has found that another type of cholesterol-lowering drug can protect people from heart attacks and strokes. The finding can help millions at high risk of heart attacks who cannot tolerate statins or do not respond to them sufficiently.
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TRAVEL


Survey: Enterprise is top car renter, Dollar worst
USA Today
Enterprise, National, and in a tie for third, Alamo and Hertz, were the top brands for overall satisfaction among major car rental agencies, a study finds. Dollar, Thrifty and Budget were the three worst. But overall, customer satisfaction has plateaued, as seen in the new study by J.D. Power and Associates.
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SECOND CAREERS


5 ways to turn your age into an asset
Job-Hunt.org via Forbes
Managing the "age issue" is a matter of perspective during a job search. For older job seekers, the goal is to turn your age from a potential liability into an asset, so recruiters and hiring managers will view you as a seasoned veteran. As a job seeker, your first commandment is to find the job that fits your experience, career goals, strengths and personal fulfillment.
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CONSUMER TIPS


12 surprising ways to save on groceries
The Simple Dollar
If you've been trying to cut costs to stop living from paycheck to paycheck, the food category was probably one of the first to take a hit. You may have tried slashing your grocery budget to an unrealistic amount and clipping coupons to make ends meet. If this approach is working, kudos to you. But if you’re struggling with it or even failing miserably, don't throw in the towel just yet.
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We are NARFE. Join us!
The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association is the only membership organization solely dedicated to protecting and preserving the benefits of all federal workers and retirees. NARFE is your legislative voice and your information resource. Join now.

Visit NARFE on the Web at www.narfe.org.



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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
Bianca Gibson, Executive Editor, 469.420.2611   Contribute news
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