UPDATED 
June 12, 2024

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BEYOND THE LINE 

June 12, 2024                              ALBANY BILL TO GUARANTEE OUR HEALTH BENEFITS DIES

Despite the support from many legislators in Albany backing the bills that would have guaranteed our current health benefits,
both the Senate and Assembly bills died without any votes being taken. Strong opposition to the bills by DC37, the UFT and other large unions in the Municipal Labor Council appeared to be using threats of voting for many of those legislators. Bob Ganley mentioned at the recent meeting that if a bill wasn't planned ahead of time to reach the Governor's desk, it certainly wasn't going to get there.

The Organization of Public Service Retirees vows to continue the fight in the next session in Albany. Donations are needed and we ask our members to make a donation. The other issue at hand is whether the City will ask for an appeal to the most recent court case they lost in appeal.

Please go to their website and make a donation, no matter how small:  www.nycretirees.org

June 6, 2024                                                      REPORT OF JUNE MEMBERSHIP MEETING

With thanks to Recording Sec'ty Bob Forrester and his wife, Fran:

President Bob Valentino called the meeting to order at 12:15 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance to The Flag.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto reported we lost 5 fellow Transit Police Officers since our last meeting, along with Father D'Angelo from
The Shields of Long Island. We asked for prayers for them and their families and also for our Armed forces and recent law-enforcement officers who lost their lives in the performance of their duties along with all officers and family members on the Sick List.

Bob Valentino spoke of the 80th Anniversary of D-Day; all the men who fought, the sacrifices they made and for all who lost their lives in Normandy - truly the "Greatest Generation."

We had two guest speakers:

Association Chaplain Rabbi Berkowitz remembered Father D'Angelo as the perfect example of a member of the Clergy. He then reported on his recent visit to Israel with 25 members of the Clergy. He spoke of the horrors of October 7th and the 125 hostages still being held.  He spoke movingly about the rich history of Israel and its people.  Bob Valentino asked for prayers for all who suffered on October 7th.

President Valentino reported that the Executive Board unanimously voted to endorse member Mike Sapraicone who is running for US Senator against current Sen. Kirsten Gillebrand. Mike has worked for New Yorkers for over 20 years as a Transit ,then as an NYPD Police Officer and Detective. We feel he has a better knowledge of legislation that would affect law enforcement. Members were urged to vote for him.

Bob also mentioned that many members, several being present at the meeting, were celebrating their birthdays in the month of June. We all gave them a big Happy Birthday applause.


Former Deputy Police Commissioner Bob Ganley
reported he received a call from Albany in the morning that the bills submitted for a vote to guarantee our health benefits were now being rejected in Albany by their not coming to the floor for a vote. He further mentioned that the City of NY, though not yet reported, may appeal the recent decision where they lost the case regarding co-pays and of any moving of retirees into a Medicare Advantage Plan from their current Medicare and GHI plans.

Bob Valentino reported that at the Sept. 4th meeting, 4 members will be inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame. It was decided that the September meeting will start at 11:30 AM to alleviate traffic problems for those members who travel far.

Information about the June 14th Bowling Dinner can be found on the Website on the Latest News page report of the May meeting.

Executive Sect’y Tom Greer reported he has sold all the Mets-Yankees baseball tickets and we thanked Tom for all his work with this event every year.

Tony Lomanto mentioned we were having a navigation problem with the Website which is being worked on and is now back in operation. Bob urged members to visit the Website at least once a week for up -to-date information.

Treas. Tony Lomanto reported we have $15,500.00 in checking and have $4,000.00 in donations. All our expenses have gone up.  On July 24th postage will be $.73 for first class.  In light of these, and other increasing costs, the 2025 dues will go from $30.00 to $40.00 per year.

Legislative Director Tony Piazza spoke of the City of New York and also the Variable Supplement Fund, noting that there are only about 300 members who would receive this benefit.

Tony thanked Greg Stripp (L) and Tom Greer (R) for taking care of the members at the door

Bob then thanked Tony Lomanto and Frank Crisa for their great work on the “Beyond the Line” magazine. Tony mentioned that he and Frank were already working on the next issue and if you have any photos or articles you would like to see in that issue, please send them to us. Unfortunately, newspaper articles are difficult to copy and publish.

Tony asked members to notify him if their address or email has changed.

After the 50/50 raffle, the meeting adjourned at 2:00 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Fran and Bob Forrester

May 31,  2024   DEA PRESIDENT PAUL DiGIACOMO HONORED AS "MAN OF THE YEAR" AT NYPD HONOR LEGION DINNER
DEA President Paul DiGiacomo, who has been a good friend of the Retirees Association, was honored as "Man of the Year" at the Annual NYPD Honor Legion Dinner on May 30th at Russo's On The Bay in Howard Beach NY.

Paul has reached retirement age and will be stepping down as the DEA President as upcoming elections would prevent him from serving his full term of office if re-elected.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto, Advisor Fred Ametrano and Associate Members Bob Lentol and Jim Venezia represented the Retirees Association at the affair.

Several photos taken at the affair can be viewed in this PDF

May 21, 2024              CITY OF NEW YORK LOSES THE APPEAL CASE FOR THE MEDICARE ADVANTAGE PLAN


CELEBRATE!  YOU EARNED THIS!

The Organization of Public Service Retirees www.nycretirees.org announced that the Appellate Court has ruled IN FAVOR of the organization in the appeal case started by the City of New York and the forcing of retirees into the Medicare Advantage Plan (MAP).

From the OPSR:

On March 21, 2024, we had oral arguments and today, May 21, we were given a unanimous decision.  We thank all of you for believing in us and our legal team.  Without all of you, we would never have gotten this far.  The Court said the City cannot take away our Medicare Supplement.

This is the exact decision,

"Accordingly, the judgment (denominated an order) of the Supreme Court, New York County (Lyle E. Frank, J.), entered September 19, 2023, which, in this hybrid proceeding-class action brought pursuant to CPLR article 78, granted the petition complaint to the extent of permanently enjoining the City respondents/defendants from eliminating petitioner/plaintiff retirees’ existing health insurance, automatically enrolling them in a new Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan, enforcing a June 30, 2023 deadline for retirees to opt out of the new plan, and implementing any other aspect of the City’s new retiree healthcare policy, should be affirmed, without costs."

You can read it here 

May 13, 2024                     FUNDRAISER FOR RET. SGT. RORY McGINN'S GRANDDAUGHTER


RORY AND LILLY

From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

CHARITY FUNDRAISER FOR RORY McGINN'S GRANDDAUGHTER LILLY

Lilly is the Granddaughter of Association member Ret. Sgt. Rory McGinn. Please help this precious 6 year old little girl Lilly and other children who have this unknown disease. See the letter below I received from Rory.

Louie, On June 8, 2024 my son in law Johan Fagerholt will be participating in the Orphaned Disease Center’s Million Dollar Bike Ride to benefit the TBC1D24 Foundation taking place in Philadelphia, PA.

On October 18, 2017 my wife Lillian and I welcomed our first Grandchild Lillian (aka Lilly) to the world. Lilly began having seizures at 3 months old. After multiple hospitalizations and specialist appointments Lilly was diagnosed with a rare genetic mutation. So rare it doesn’t have a name only a number, TBC1D24.

The mutation causes many medical issues including sensorineural hearing loss, drug resistant epilepsy, hypotonia and dystonia. In many cases those diagnosed do not thrive and pass within their first years of life.

Lilly is one of the lucky ones and although she lives every day with various symptoms she is a very happy girl who greets everyone with a smile! And she has two great parents, Bridget and Johan.

Donations to the TBC1D24 Million Dollar Bike Ride are matched by corporate sponsors and 100% of donations are awarded for research grants to help future kids.

Please go to Support Johan Fagerholt - 2024 Million Dollar Bike Ride | PledgeIt for Charities   Johan Fagerholt is riding that day.

Louie, I can’t thank you enough.
Rory

The Retirees Association donated $100 to help.

May 9, 2024                                     MEDICARE UPDATE REPORT FROM RET. LIEUTENANTS ASSOCIATION               
Thanks to Lou Hollander and Alan Berkowitz for forwarding this out.

The Retired Lieutenants Association NYPD issued this report that was posted in The Chief in April. You can read it on the PDF HERE

It involves a letter being sent to President Biden to put a halt to the privatization of Medicare and instead expand the public health program.

May 3, 2024                                                     REPORT OF MEMBERSHIP MEETING MAY 1, 2024

 

President Valentino started the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance followed by Treasurer Tony Lomanto reading off the names of the 11 fellow officers who passed away since our last meeting in March. We asked that they and their family members be remembered in your prayers along with the law enforcement officers recently killed in the line of duty. We also ask that all our fellow officers and family members on the Sick List be remembered with your prayers and for our fellow law enforcement and Armed Forces serving in harm’s way.

 

After a delicious buffet meal, President Valentino said he was very happy with the number of members attending the meeting at this new location, Verdi's of Whitestone, and mentioned that we will be scouting a location in Brooklyn for a possible meeting location. One former Brooklyn location that held meetings was the Ben McChree Boat Club off the Belt Parkway. Unfortunately, they are no longer in business. We will inform our members where the June 5th meeting will take place.

 

Bob then sent birthday greetings to all our members whose birthdays are in May, including our editor, Frank Crisa. He further commented on the number of great comments he has received with our recent issue of “Beyond the Line” and how much that newsletter means to the membership. It is, truly, one of the ‘glues’ that holds us together.

 

Bob mentioned that he will be going for knee replacement surgery at the Manhattan Hospital for Special Surgery on May 22nd. He expects to be bowling again shortly thereafter.

 

Bob spoke of the Annual Bowling League Dinner Dance to be held on June 14th at Verdi’s of Westbury. The cost is $140.00 per couple.  Entertainment will be by the group "Desert Highway," the Eagles tribute band.  Contact Bob at leftybowler0601@gmail.com   

 

Executive Secretary Tom Greer informed us all 100 tickets for the Mets-Yankees Game on June 25th have been sold out. Tom will be texting the tickets to those who purchased them in a few days. Another job well-done, Tom, and thank you.

 

Treasurer Tony Lomanto thanked all the members who sent condolences, Mass, or sympathy cards to him after his brother passed away in March. He thanked all the members present for attending this meeting at the new location. We saw several members from The Bronx and Westchester County who couldn’t make the meetings on Long Island.

 

He then gave a hearty “Thank You!” to Frank Crisa for the work he did in putting together this last issue and how proud he is to be working with Frank. Any PAID member who has not received their copy, please contact Tony Lomanto at 516-526-7968 or alomanto@optonline.net 

 

Financially, we are doing well. We have 5 new members joining and the donations have been coming in as you can see in the last issue. We deeply appreciate them in view of ever-increasing costs for printing, postage, meeting expenses, etc. The cost of this last issue alone was over $8100 for printing and mailing. Another rising expense is the Association’s $300 Death Benefit. From the time it started in 2006 to date, the total is $120,700. He reminded everyone that the benefit is only for eligible members who are paid up to date.

 

Tony spoke of the ongoing Medicare Advantage fight with the City of NY. He and President Valentino went to Albany with many other city employee retirees to get the support of the legislators to back the bills that would guarantee our current health benefits. Bob spoke to the crowd along with Marianne Pizzitola of The Organization of Public Service Retirees. Her organization is constantly seeking donations to keep the legal fight going. We ask for the members to send any donation amount to them by going to their website for instructions: www.nycretirees.org

 

Our Legislative Director, Tony Piazza, couldn’t make the meeting, so 1st VP Deo Fasolino spoke of the current status of the VSF. At the present time, there is a bill in the Assembly – A7824 – but it needs a companion Senate bill to have the VSF benefits extended to those eligible service retirees before July 1, 1987. At present, Tony Piazza estimates about 280 eligible retirees are in that group. We ask that all residents of NY City, their relatives, and friends, send letters to Mayor Adams and their respective NY City Council members and urge them to support the bills that would correct this injustice.

 

Deo further informed our members that President Valentino bowled his 17th “Perfect 300” game recently. Then Bobby corrected Deo….it was his 70th sanctioned “300” game. Well done, Bobby!

 

With that, the meeting was adjourned, and we all ventured out to the highways and headed home.

 

2nd VP Ron DiMaio and recording Sec’ty Bob Forrester were excused. Many thanks to Financial Sec’ty Greg Stripp and Tom Greer for their help at the door.

 

Fraternally,

Tony Lomanto

 
L - R   Bob Valentino, Paul Bauer, Mike Sweeney, Bill Frawley                L - Ben Patton, R - Barricinia Thompson, C- Her son, Jordan 


L side top - Steve Mona, Frank Crisa, Tony Lomanto / R side top - Fred Ametrano, Bob Valentino, Al Ciprello
doing a Re-Con assignment for a Brooklyn restaurant on Thursday, May 2nd.

April 17, 2024           PRESIDENT BOB VALENTINO AND TREASURER TONY LOMANTO MAKE THE TRIP TO ALBANY

                   

                                   Tony & Bobby in front of the State Capital Building                   Bob talking to the group

   

                                           Tony Lomanto, Mariann Pizzitola, Bob Valentino                              

Bobby and Tony went by bus to Albany on Monday, the 15th with the Organization of Public Service Retirees to join many other public employee retirees to call on the NY State Senate & State Assembly to pass S8388 / A7866 that would protect the health benefits or contributions of retired employees of public employers.
In asdditon to Marianne Pizzitola and several Senators and Assembly persons. Bobby Valentino spoke to those present about how we were promised certain health benefits and pensions that the City is looking to change.

He ended his talk with "Promises made must be promises kept!"

After his shorrt speech, many of the retirees congratulated Bob on what he said...well put together and well spoken despite the fact the microphone on the lectern was not working.

Thanks to Lou Hollander, those who made speeches can be read HERE

March 23, 2024                         NY SENATE BILL HEARING FOR HEALTH BENEFITS PROTECTION and
                                            NYPD DEA PRESIDENT PAUL DiGIACOMO ON "GOOD MORNING NEW YORK"

President Valentino and Treasurer Tony Lomanto are planning to go to Albany with the Organization of Public Service Retirees on Monday, April 15th, for the hearing on the bill to protect our retiree health benefits.

Senate Bill S8388A protects the health insurance benefits of retirees of public employers and contributions of retirees of public employers.



DEA President Paul DiGiacomo was on "Good Day New York" speaking about the Detective staffing crisis in the NYPD and the failures of the City Council.

Click on the link https://x.com/NYCPDDEA/status/1771160982502408593?s=20

March 22, 2024                                      LATEST ISSUE OF "BEYOND THE LINE" IS IN THE MAIL
We are very happy to inform our members that the latest issue of "Beyond the Line" was mailed out to the PAID members. This is a big 56 page issue we are sure you will enjoy reading. Between our Editor, Frank Crisa, President Bob Valentino, and Treasurer Tony Lomanto,  we went over it page by page to make sure everything was correct, but if you spot any inaccuracies, please bring them to our attention.

If you don't receive your copy in the next 2 weeks, please contact us. The mail service lately has not been up to par.

March 22, 2024                                      REPORT OF COURT HEARING BETWEEN NYC AND
                                                               THE ORGANIZATION OF PUBLICE SERVICE RETIREES

We received an email from the Organization of Public Service Retirees describing the hearing that took place on March 21st regarding the City's attempt to install the Medicare Advantage Plan for retirees. The Organization's lawyer feels 2 of the judges are in our favor but said it could take up to 5 months to reach a decision.

Please, if possible, make a donation to the organization to keep the fight going. Donations can be made to the

NYCOPSR
c/o JSH Accounting Services
POB 143538
Fayetteville GA 30214. 

It is a few pages long and can be read in this PDF

March 11, 2024                                             REPORT OF MARCH MEMBERSHIP MEETING
 


NYPD Transit Bureau Chief Michael Kemper, Michael Sapraicone, NYPD DEA President Paul DiGiacomo


Minutes of the NYCTPOA meeting on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, at Verdi's of Westbury.

The meeting was called to order by President Bob Valentino at 12:30 with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Since our last meeting we lost 19 fellow Transit Police Officers.  A Moment of Silence and prayers were requested for their families and for our members who are sick and for all law enforcement, both active and deceased, and for our Armed Forces serving in harm's way.

We had three guest speakers:

Michael Kemper, Chief of the NYPD Transit Bureau who spoke about his background with the NYPD.  He became Chief of the Transit Bureau 15 months ago.  He spoke sincerely at length about the challenges in the subway; some of the biggest being recidivism and fare evasion with no consequences.  He then answered many questions from the members.

Paul DiGiacomo, President of the NYPD DEA, was the second speaker who shared his memories of 40 years of service starting with the Housing PD. He spoke at length of his love for the Transit Police with his father, Paul Sr. who worked in District 34. He mentioned that he will no longer run for President as his length of service is coming to an end.

The third speaker was Mike Sapraicone. a retired NYPD detective who started in Transit and is a member of this association. Mike is running for the U.S. Senate to replace Kirsten Gillebrand. He mentioned that the current Administration has no plan, and we can change things and the way we live by voting.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto reported we have 10 new members joining, amongst them is the former Chief of the Transit Police and former NYPD Commissioner, William Bratton, who joined as an Honorary Member at the request of President Valentino. Tony also gave a report on the financials and donations.

He then reported the newest issue of "Beyond The Line" magazine, completed with the expertise of our Esteemed Editor, Frank Crisa, affectionately known as "Merlin the Magician," is now at the printer.  It is the largest issue ever - 56 pages, with donations alone covering 3 pages.  We should get it printed and mailed out by the end of the month. If you don't receive your copy by mid-April, please contact any board member.

If a member has a new mailing or email address, please notify Tony Lomanto to make sure you will receive this issue. As a reminder, it only goes to PAID members, so if you haven't sent in your dues, please do so very soon. This type of mail does NOT get forwarded, so make sure we have your proper mailing address, especially those who are "Snowbirds."

When you receive any emails from the association, please inform your fellow retirees who do not have computer access of the information sent.  If you know of a fellow Transit retiree who is not a member, especially those in the later years of the Transit Police Department, please urge them to join to keep this organization going into the future.

1st VP Deo Fasolino spoke about our departed members, especially Floyd Holloway and Joe Carney, and their contributions to the members of the Transit Police Department, and for Floyd, several other law enforcment members as well.

The City is appealing the recent decision regarding our health insurance co-pays for Emblem Health / GHI members.  The City is trying to "bleed" the organization dry with legal expenses. Donations can be made to the NYCOPSR, c/o JSH Accounting Services, POB 143538, Fayetteville, GA 30214.  Any amount would be helpful.

On June 14, 2024, The Police Retiree's Bowling League will hold their Annual Dinner Dance at Verdi's.  The cost is $140.00 per couple.  Entertainment will be by the group "Desert Highway," the Eagles tribute band.

Please contact Bob Valentino for tickets at leftybowler0601@gmail.com

Bob introduced Ret. Det. Sgt. Fred Ametrano as the new Advisor to the President. Fred has been helpful in the past and we look forward to his help in the association business.

Bob also mentioned that our member, Ret. Sgt. and former Deputy Commissioner Bob Ganley, was appointed to the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees as Vice President. We wish him much success in the organization.

2nd VP Ronnie Di Maio mentioned the 9:30 AM Blue Mass and Communion Breakfast on April 21st in Oceanside NY by the Knights of Columbus at the request of member Ret. Sgt. Larry Lombardo. This Mass will be for active and retired law enforcement and for those killed in the line of duty. The cost is $15.00. Details are on the Latest News page of our website in the February 13th entry posting..

Executive Sec’ty Tom Greer mentioned that there are 6 tickets left for the Yankee-Mets Game.  Please contact Tom Greer if you are interested at 631-902-8911.

Many thanks to Tom, Financial Sec'ty Greg Stripp, and Sgt-at-Arms Mike Lanning for their help at the door welcoming our attending members.

Our next meeting in May will be held at Verdi’s in Whitestone, Queens, and members will be notified with full details. Check the Meetings and Events  page for full details when posted. 

The Meeting adjourned at 2:40 pm.

Fraternally,
Bob Forrester, Recording Secretary, (with able assistance from member Fran Forrester)

 

February 21, 2024                                          BJs MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL INFORMATION

For our members who have a membership in the BJs Warehouse Club, we have received the latest information for membership renewals that will end on February 2025. Please check the flyer for complete details.

The flyer can be viewed HERE

BJs CLUB MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL ENDING FEBRUARY 2025

It’s time to update the BJ’s Offer for your NYC RTPOA members so here you go!

The old pricing ended on February 2nd 2023, and the NEW offer started on February 5, 2024.  Please note that new memberships are only $20 or $60! All processing is still being directed to the Call Center.


Thank you for partnering with us to offer BJ’s Corporate Membership Discount Program as an exciting benefit to your employees!

To better serve you, all membership enrollments and renewals for your employees will be processed through our BJ’s Partnership Support Center.

The attached flyer includes everything your employees will need to take advantage of their membership benefit. Please include this as an attachment when sending the announcement.

The expiration date of the new offer is February 1, 2025.

Please note, listed on the flyer is your organizations ‘Group Promo Code’. This code is unique to your organization. When any of your employees/members call our Partnership Support Center, they will need to reference this ‘Group Promo Code’ to qualify for the discount.

BJ’s Partnership Support Center details -

Phone #: 800-313-8887
Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday from 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM EST (No weekends.)

When an employee calls in, all they will need is the following information -

• Your Organization’s ‘Group Promo Code’, which is 350718.
• Debit or credit card information
• If a current BJ’s member, a membership ID which can be found on their BJ’s membership card or from within the BJ’s app

Here is the current offer: The membership levels are now Club (formerly Inner Circle) and Club + (formerly Rewards).

NEW MEMBER OFFER: (These new member rates are amazing!)   (plus tax in NY and NJ)

Any employee may OPEN a NEW Club membership at the discounted rate of $20/12 months ($35 savings off the In-Club rate of $55/12 months) or 

may OPEN a NEW Club + membership at the discounted rate of $60/12 months ($50 savings off the In-Club rate of $110/12 months).

Both offers also include one household member card at no charge. (2 cards total on membership.) This applies to NEW members only…previous or existing members are not eligible for new member rates.

EXISTING MEMBER OFFER:   (plus tax in NY and NJ)

This program also enables your employees to EXTEND their existing Club or Club + memberships at the rates below:

The Club renewals are only $50/12 months.

The Club + renewals are only $100/12 months.

With payment, 12 months will be ADDED onto current expiration date of existing members.

February 14, 2024             NYPD DEA PRESIDENT PAUL DiGIACOMO ANNOUNCES HE IS STEPPING DOWN



Paul DiGiacomo, Jr. son of the late Ret Transit PO Paul DiGiacomo, announced that he will be stepping down as President of the NYPD DEA in June, prior to the new elections. He stated that his retirement date is coming up and were he to run as President again, he would not be able to finish his term of office.

His full PDF message report can be read  HERE

Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUpw7IKpLmY


Our thanks to Paul for all he has done with the Retirees Association and we wish him a long and healthy retirement when he finally packs it in..

February 9, 2024                                     MEDICARE PART 'B' & IRMAA RE-IMBURSEMENTS


Medicare Part B 2023 Reimbursement


Medicare-eligible retirees and their Medicare-eligible dependents will be reimbursed annually for the standard Medicare Part B amount, excluding any penalties and late enrollment fees, and subject to be pro-rated.

2023 Medicare Part B reimbursements will be issued in April 2024. Please check your bank account/statement (or the mail, if you are receiving a physical check).

If you have already submitted your Medicare Part A & B card to the Health Benefits Program, this payment is automatic, and you will receive it annually.

What is IRMAA?

The Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA) is an additional amount that you are required to pay for your monthly Medicare premiums if you have higher annual earnings.

If your income in 2020 was

less than or equal to $91,000 as an individual, or
less than or equal to $182,000 as a married couple,
you did not pay IRMAA in 2022 and the following information does not apply to you.

If your 2022 SSA-1099 form shows that you received the standard Medicare Part B premiums deductions of $2,041.20, you did not pay IRMAA in 2022 and the following information does not apply to you.

Please do NOT submit an IRMAA application as you are not eligible for reimbursement.

IRMAA 2023 Reimbursement

IRMAA 2023 annual reimbursements will be issued during the 3rd week of October 2024. 

IMPORTANT: Please do NOT submit the IRMAA Reimbursement Application for 2023 prior to May 2024.  Processing of these applications will not begin before that date

IRMAA 2022 Reimbursement

IRMAA 2022 annual reimbursements were issued during the 3rd week of October 2023.
Medicare-eligible retirees and their Medicare-eligible dependents can submit an IRMAA application if they paid above the standard amount of $170.10 per month. If you did not pay more than the standard amount then you are not eligible for IRMAA. 

February 6, 2024                   STREAMING VIDEOS OF FUNERAL SERVICES FOR FLOYD HOLLOWAY
From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

The streaming videos taken at the funeral home where our dear friend and mentor to many, Lifetime Member Ret. P.O. Floyd Holloway, was waked and the video at the Calverton National Cemetery can be viewed at the following links:

The funeral service can be viewed at Holloway Chapel Service (hdezwebcast.com)

The funeral procession can be viewed here: Floyd Holloway Funeral Procession (hdezwebcast.com)

The interment service can be viewed at: Interment Holloway (hdezwebcast.com)

The video of Floyd when he was honored last year can be viewed HERE

January 29, 2024                          THE TRANSIT  POLICE LADIES HAVE NOT BEEN FORGOTTEN
Our member, Ron Morales, has come up with another fantastic piece of artwork depicting the women officers of the Transit Police Department. Excellent work, Ron!



From Lou Hollander:
Ronnie Morales, our Honorary Transit Police Artist, recently put out a terrific drawing above and depicts five Transit cops arresting a number of perks. What makes this drawing so good beyond its quality is the story it tells. At the head of the scene of the arrest is a female officer who appears to be in charge. This is very interesting and a story that many of us are aware of and which should be told. Let's be honest; when the department decided to put our female officers on patrol there was much trepidation and quite frankly, moronic response. These ladies were well trained and willing and, more importantly, more capable of doing the job. I remember as PBA delegate having guys tell me they didn't want to work with a female as a partner. Some guys tried to be overprotective and didn't think they should be assigned to single patrol, but in a very short time these ladies not only proved themselves, many of them excelled. Hats off to them and thanks, Ronnie, for pointing that out in your recent cartoon.

January 21, 2024           ASSOCIATE MEMBER ERIC WOLLMAN RECEIVES LONGEVITY AWARD


Our Associate Member, Eric Wollman, (in the center) recently received a Longevity Award plaque from the NYPD for his 50 years of service in the Auxiliary Police. He holds the rank of Inspector.

Congratulations Eric for your dedication to the NYPD, and thank you for being a member of this Association.

January 2, 2023                     PHOTOS FROM THE 2023 CHRISTMAS AND HOLIDAY PARTY
We had a great turnout for our annual Christmas and Holiday Party where our Treasurer, Tony Lomanto, was honored for his many years of service to the association. Those photos can be viewed in this POWER POINT DISPLAY

When you click on a page, it fades out to the next page.

December 4, 2023        GREAT PHOTOS FROM THE NY REUNION & THE SPRING HILL R.O.M.E.O.

Lou Hollander did a great job with these photos and thanks for sending them out.

The NY Reunion, so well set up by members Marilyn Scahill and Paul Murphy, can be viewed HERE

The Spring Hill R.O.M.E.O. Luncheon, set up by Lou Hollander can be viewed HERE

November 14, 2023        THE ANNUAL METS-YANKEES SUBWAY SERIES GAME FOR 2024
Thanks to the efforts of our Executive Secretary, Tom Greer, we have purchased trickets for the annual Mets - Yankees Subway Series Baseball Game set for Tuesday, June 25th. Order fast as they were all sold out very early this year.

November 7, 2023      A CLEAR EXPLANATION OF WHAT PROMPTED THE CITY TO HAVE THE AETNA PLAN

Thanks to Alan Berkowitz for sending tbis out. berky4@aol.com

Former NYPD DEA President Tom Scotto gives a perfect explanation of what transpired between the City of New York and the Muncipal Labor Council (MLC) regarding the Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan. It's a You Tube video with
Maryann Pizzotola of the Organization of Publice Service Retirees. It's around 20 minutes long but it clarifies many questions.

Watch it here:  https://youtu.be/O9xGAx8aS3k?si=_Yz9sWEFg3RGaK8d

November 5, 2023                              WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A TRANSIT COP
This was sent to us from Ret. Det. Jimmy O'Shaughnessy (Jimmy O) flinstone317@aol.com & Lou Hollander

WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A TRANSIT COP

On Thursday November 2nd, we buried (Ret. P.O.) Michael Whalen, but that’s not the story. Among the people who attended his sendoff was Dan Desario (Lifetime Member Ret. P.O.). I never met Dan before. He was a Brooklyn cop that worked in Districts 30 and 33. Dan never worked with Mike and did not know him. Dan drove up from Brentwood, Long Island to Saugerties, New York in his words: “To honor Mike." I was a little preoccupied, so I didn’t get a chance to speak to him much, but when I got home I thought about it. This man, who didn’t know any of us, drove up from Long Island to pay respects to Mike. Dan Desario shows why we are different from everyone else and makes me proud to say: "I was a Transit Cop!"
Thank you Dan.
Well said, Jimmy.


DETECTIVE STEVEN MCDONALD MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP


In the spirit of all that Detective Steven McDonald stood for, NYPD With Arms Wide Open has established a scholarship award for students within the NYPD community living with special needs, or those who are the family members of an individual with special needs.

The 2023 Scholarship application process is now open. All completed entries are due no later than Friday February 2, 2024.

Download the application HERE

We were told this is open to all fellow Transit officers who may not have actually retired from NYPD.

November 1, 2023                        HEALTH PLAN CHANGEOVER PERIOD &
                                             REMINDER - CARRY PERMITS FOR NYC RESIDENTS 
                                                             

November is the month for the annual Fall Transfer Period for Retirees when you can choose to change your current health plan for another. The new plan will go into effect January 1, 2024.

Go to the Office of Labor Relations / Health Benefits website for the proper forms: health-retiree-responsibilities (nyc.gov)

To view the various plan benefits, go to the website: health-sbc (nyc.gov)



A few NYC resident members were asking about their carry permits and the revised NYC regulations when renewing your permit. We are showing this information below.

INFORMATION FOR RETIREES LIVING IN NYC WITH CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS

NYC CC PERMITSFOR NYC RETIREES LIVING IN NYC 5 BOROUGHS ONLY FROM THE LBA BREAKFAST MEETING JANUARY 2023

THIS SHOULD ANSWER ALL THOSE QUESTIONS I HAVE BEEN GETTING.
IF YOU ARE NOT DUE TO RENEW I SUGGEST YOU PRINT THIS OUT AND KEEP IT

NEW TRAINING REQUIREMENTS FOR SOME RETIREES RESIDING IN NYC TO RETAIN CONCEALED CARRY PERMIT: We would like to acknowledge and thank Marty Browne (Retired Sergeant) and Director Nicole Berkovich, from the NYPD License Division, for coming to the LBA meeting to answer questions from the membership regarding the new requirement mandating that some retirees attend a sixteen (16) hour Gun Safety Course and a two (2) hour Live Ammunition Firing Course to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permit issued by the New York City Police Department. This requirement, as of now, only applies to those retirees whose licenses are issued via the NYPD License Division. The different requirements apply in the following three (3) unique scenarios:

Retirees Who Retired Prior To September 1, 2017:

For those retirees who separated from service prior to September 1, 2017, and who receive their Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permit from the NYPD License Division, must satisfy the following requirements to successfully renew their permit:
- Attend a sixteen (16) hour Gun Safety Course and a two (2) hour Live Ammo Shooting Course – This is currently a once in a lifetime attendance requirement. OR - Possess proof of attending at least one HR 218 course (ID Card) between the periods of September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022. OR - Proof of having attended any other Gun Safety related course during the periods of September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022. (check with pistol license of the course is acceptable)

Retirees who retired between September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022: As per the stipulations spelled out in the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, retirees who separated from service during this time period are NOT required to provide any additional proof (training or HR 218) to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon Permit.

Retirees who retired on or after September 1, 2022: If they were employed/Active between September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022, are NOT required to provide any additional proof (training or HR 218) to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon Permit.

If a retired member who resides in New York City and who receives their Concealed Carry Weapon permit from the NYPD License Division does not satisfy the renewal mandates stipulated above, the likely results are as follows:
IF RETIREE POSSESSES A: Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, Does NOT Have a Valid HR 218 = License Division will eventually attempt to confiscate and safeguard your weapons. License Division will usually allow approximately six (6) months after the members current permit expires for member to renew application for Concealed Carry permit.
Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, VALID HR 218 = Allowed to retain and carry weapon(s). However, will be unable to purchase ammunition and buy/sell gun(s) in New York State. The License Division may eventually contact you to ascertain if you wish to renew Carry or convert to Premise Permit.
Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, Valid HR 218, Valid Premise Permit: Allowed to retain and carry weapon(s). Premise Permit also allows you to purchase ammunition and to buy/sell gun(s) in New York State.
**Please note that a valid HR 218 is a key requirement in retaining and carrying your weapon when you do not satisfy the CCW renewal requirements and therefore do not have a CCW Permit issued by the NYPD License Division.**
Routinely, retired members will receive a mailed notice from the NYPD License Division, three (3) months prior to their current CCW Permit expiring advising them how to apply for their renewal and what requirements are mandated to successfully renew their CCW. If a member switches from a Concealed Carry Weapon Permit to a Premise Permit, the member may switch back to a CCW permit if they can now satisfy the requirements. However, this conversion cannot take place until the next scheduled permit renewal date (usually three years).
If you are a retiree who receives your CCW Permit from the NYPD License Division and have additional question regarding this matter, please contact 646-610-5872.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
IT WAS ASKED ABOUT OTHER COUNTIES OUTSIDE NYC WHO ARE NOT AS STRICT WITH THESE RULES FOR RETIRED NYPD COPS LIVING THERE AND RENEWING.
THE REPLY WAS THAT THOSE OTHER COUNTIES "ARE NOT OBEYING THE NEW LAW"

October 22, 2023                         JUDGE FRANK'S DECISON ON CO-PAY COURT APPEAL
Well, the Organization of Public Service Retirees won again - #7. Judge Lyle Frank has made a decison that the appeal by the City and Emblem Health/GHI regarding co-pays is considwered a class axction and not just for the several petitioners in the lawsuit. The Judges' decision can be read HERE

Because of ever increasing legal fees incurred in this fight, we again urge our members to make a small donation to the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees, P.O. Box 941, Venice, Fl. 34284.  They work very hard and are our hope to keep winning.  Donations can be made by Check, Zelle, PayPal and Venmo. Check details on their website www.nycretirees.org 

October 22, 2023                                        SOCIAL SECURITY COLA FOR 2024

Thanks to Alan Berkowitz for spreading the good news. berky4@aol.com

Social Security cost-of-living adjustment adds $50 a month on average


Retirement and disability benefits will increase by 3.2% and more than $50 a month on average starting in January, the Social Security Administration announced Thursday.

You should be receiving a letter from Social Security next month detailing what your montly payments will be starting in January, 2024. If you come under the IRMAA rules regarding extra cost for Medicare based on your annual income and you file a reimbursement request with OLR, make sure you keep that letter as proof.

For 2024, along with the 3.2 % COLA increase in your monthly Social Security check comes an increase in the monthly Medicare charges of an additional $9.80 to $174.70 and a $14 increase in the annual deductible to $240.00. The Government gives then takes away.

October 11, 2023                     INTERESTING ARTICLE IN THE NY DAILY NEWS ABOUT THE MAPP
                                                           UPDATE FOR NEXT ISSUE OF BEYOND THE LINE and
                                                                           PENSION C.O.L.A. NOTIFICATION

The NYPD Retired Lieutenant's Asssociation sent out an email with this Daily News article regarding the City's plan to implement the Medicare Advantage Program for retirees.

You can read the PDF HERE



Our Editor, Frank Crisa, and I, have set the date of September 21st as the deadline to finalize the next issue of "Beyond the Line." Any letters and donations received after that date will appear in the first issue we publish in 2024. We had to do this as space became very tight and we had to keep everything in this 40 page issue.

The issue has been sent to the printer and then to the mailer. You should be receiving it sometime next week or earlier depending on the speed of our postal services.

PENSION COLA ADJUSTMENT

By now, you should have received a letter from NYCERS that the anual Cost Of Living Adjustment (COLA) has been increased by 2.5% on the Annual Maximum Retirement Allowance (AMRA) of $18,000. This equates to $37.50 a month which you will receive with the September payment.

September 7, 2023                           REPORT OF SEPTEMBER MEMBERSHIP MEETING

Minutes of the NYCTPOA Meeting held on Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2023 from Recording Secretary Bob Forrester and his able assistant, his lovely wife, Fran.

 

The meeting was called to order by President Bob Valentino at 1:15 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance to The Flag and a moment of silence for the sick and departed. We had over 60 members attend this meeting.

 

Treasurer Tony Lomanto reported that since our last meeting we have lost 16 fellow retirees. They were 14 Police Officers and 2 Honorary members.  He asked us to pray for our sick members, especially Mike Lanning who is receiving precautionary chemo treatments and for family members who have passed away. Please check our Sick List page for current information.

 

Not mentioned at the time was our Editor Frank Crisa is going into the hospital on Friday. September 8th for a cardiac procedure to regulate his heart rhythm. We pray and wish him well.

 
President Valentino
 advised us that the COLA increase this year of $37.50 a month will be starting with the September pension deposit.  Payment of the 2022 IRMAA (if applicable to those who paid more each month for Medicare in your Social Security check) will be made the third week in October. If you haven’t filed for it, you can do so and go back 3 years.
Go to the Office of Labor Relations website: health-retiree-medb-irmaa (nyc.gov) 

Bob announced that we are celebrating birthdays to these three members present at the meeting - Emily Sicoli, John White, and Sam Sapienza. Happy Birthday to them and to all our members with September birthdays

 

Because of ever increasing legal fees incurred in this fight, we urge our members to make a small donation to the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees, P.O. Box 941, Venice, Fl. 34284.  They work very hard and are our hope to keep winning.  Donations can be made by Check, Zelle, PayPal and Venmo. Check details on their website www.nycretirees.org

 

New York City residents are urged to contact their NY City Council members to protect the NYS Retirees and dependents by supporting legislation that will be introduced in the City Council. It is called INTRO 1099 and will allow Medicare eligible retirees and their eligible Medicare dependents to remain in Medicare and have a Medigap plan with benefits equivalent to or better than those available to City retirees and dependents as of December 31, 2021. Right now they have 17 sponsors but need 34. Go to the Retirees Organization to see who your representative is with contact information.

 

The NY Reunion will take place this year on Tuesday, November 14th from 4-8PM at Antuns in Queens Village. The cost is $65 per person by mail or $70 at the door. Payments should be made out to Paul Murphy and mailed to him at 190 Floral Parkway, Floral Park NY 11001. Information is also posted on the Retirees website.

 

President Valentino reports that Association Treasurer Tony Lomanto will be honored at this year's Christmas Party on Wednesday, December 6th at Verdi's.  Tony has devoted 37 years of service to the organization.

 

The date and location of the next FOP meeting will be posted on our website when finalized.

 

Bob urged members living in Queens to vote for George Grasso for Queens County DA.  He is a retired NYPD Chief and has worked in their Legal Department for many years. On Long Island, Association member Mike Sapraicone is running for office to replace George Santos.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto gave the financial report. We have sufficient funds in our checking and have received, since our last newsletter was sent out, over $5,100 in donations and have paid out $115,000 in death benefits since it was started in 2002. Tony also reported we have 19 new members joining since March.

He further reports that we are winning our health insurance battle, but the City is appealing our win.  The City is appealing Judge Frank’s ruling on the Permanent Injunctions to stop the City from moving Medicare retirees into the Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan. Besides that, GHI/Emblem Health is appealing Judge Frank’s ruling about no co-pays with GHI.

 

Frank Crisa and Tony are working on the next issue of “Beyond The Line” and they expect it will be out by early October. If you have any photos or articles you would like to see in future issues, please send them to Frank Crisa at fcrisa2886@gmail.com or Tony Lomanto at alomanto@optonline.net

 

Henry Melchiona was thankad for making a plaque of shields of police officers who gave their lives and for bringing it to all the meetings.

 

Executive Secretary Tom Greer reported the Mets-Yankees games went well this year and we will do it again in 2024. Prices are not known at this time, but probably will go up. The seats should be in the same location as this year or closer. More details to come out as Tom gets information from the Mets Organization.

 

Legislative Director Tony Piazza reported on VSF bills presented in the Spring. At this time, only about 300 members remain eligible for the VSF. It appears Police oriented bills don’t get favorable attention.

 

1st VP Deo Fasolino gave suggestions on how to recruit new members using the various social media platforms and informing fellow retirees who are not members.

 

Member Joe Asti, who was assigned to the Firearms Range in Transit and NYPD, urged members to make sure their pistol permits are in order.  If they expire and you do not have the HR 218 permit, you will be required to take the 18 hours firearms course and it will take a long time to have them reissued.  Also background checks will be required if you buy ammo after September 13th.

 

If you have a new email or have moved, please contact Tony Lomanto with the new information to update our records.


Bob Valentino urged members to visit the Retirees Website at least once a week to keep up to date. It is www.beyondtheline-tpa.org

 

After a delicious meal, President Valentino adjourned the meeting at 2:40 pm. On a side note, we changed the meeting menu from pizza to a full course meal and it appears everyone was well satisfied with this. We will continue this practice at future meetings here at Spuntinos.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Bob Forrester

A few photos taken at the meeting:
        
President Valentino addressing the membership              Our Official Greeters, Tom Greer and Greg Stripp

      

                                                   Good friends enjoying good company and good food

August 11, 2023               JUDGE FRANK RULES IN FAVOR OF THE RETIREES ORGANIZATION          

From the Organization of Public Service Retirees https://www.nycretirees.org

Judge Frank rules in our favor in a short decision which is attached. He bases it on the promise made to us and on the provisions of Admin. Code Section 12-126.

You can read the PDF of Judge Frank's decision HERE

In short, they won the case and you remain in your current plan. The City cannot move you into the Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan.

 

August 9, 2023             LATEST UPDATE WITH PROPOSED NYC AETNA HEALTH PLAN

From the Organization of Public Service Retirees https://www.nycretirees.org

The parties in our most recent case in front of Judge Frank (the attempt to offer only Advantage plans to Medicare retirees) have agreed to request that he issue a decision in the case without further submissions from the parties. (while stipulating that some previously-submitted documents will be included in the record).
This means that the City will not appeal the preliminary injunction granted on July 7 and that both parties will wait for a decision in the case from Judge Frank.  

Below is the link to the letter to Judge Frank and the attachment outlining the previously-submitted documents. Please look at. numbers 99 and 100: 
https://iapps.courts.state.ny.us/nyscef/ViewDocument?docIndex=1j624zh88boFXBUbyYK2TQ==

August 4, 2023             PHOTOS FROM THE FLORIDA REUNION AND INFO FOR THE NY REUNION
From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

Lou sent out a PDF with photos from another succesful Florida Reunion that can be viewed HERE



Marilyn Scahill and Paul Murphy have put together another New York Reunion.

Information can be viewed on the Meetings and Events page.

July 29, 2023                        RETIREES ORGANIZATION AT A RALLY IN WASHINGTON D.C.

Here's an interesting article about the Organization of Public Service Retirees at a ‘Save Medicare’ rally in Washington DC. The full article can be read here:

https://www.work-bites.com/view-all/dc-welcomes-nyc-retirees-as-heroes-in-the-fight-to-save-medicare

July 25, 2023                           DEPENDENTS ON COBRA AND JUDGE'S DECISION

We received information from Rose Amengual, Assistant Deputy Director, Administration Employee Benefits Program, in response to inquiries we received from surviving spouses who passed away and selected the COBRA benefits from the City of New York health plan.

"Please advise all surviving spouses on COBRA that the judge’s ruling has halted the move to Aetna for them, as well."

This means they will continue in the current plan they now have.

July 19, 2023                   AS EXPECTED, THE CITY FILES AN APPEAL OF JUDGE'S TRO DECISION

From the Organization of Public Service Retirees www.nycretirees.org

The City has filed a notice of appeal in our most recent case. The link is below. We have no idea how long it will take to have the appeal heard by the Appellate Division:

https://iapps.courts.state.ny.us/nyscef/ViewDocument?docIndex=dfZ8lpe_PLUS_DwVNjs1cGPwaZQ==

Let's hope the City's failure rate continues in this case.

July 7, 2023     JUDGE FRANK ISSUES TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER AGAINST THE CITY'S AETNA PLAN

To all our members:

 

We are very happy to announce that Judge Lyle Frank has granted a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against NYC to stop the implementation of the Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan that would have started September 1st.

 

From the Retired Sergeants Association:

 

As reported, an “Interim Order on Motion” (Motion 001) was made for “Injunction/Restraining Order” regarding the Aetna MA plan.  Yesterday, July 6th, Hon. Lyle E. Frank came down with a “Decision & Order On Motion”.  He stated that “the petitioners’ application for a preliminary injunction is granted”.

 

He goes on to say, “the Court finds that the petitioners have shown by clear and convincing evidence that there is a likelihood of success on the merits. The Court agrees that it is likely that this Court will ultimately find that the respondents are estopped from switching retirees into a Medicare Advantage Plan and that New York City Administrative Code section 12-126 does not permit the action that the City plans to take. Moreover, the Court also feels that some of the petitioners are likely to succeed on the merits based on the “Moratorium Law” and that there is too much uncertainty as to what doctors and other medical providers will accept the proposed new plan, this rendering the plan arbitrary and capricious as things presently stand.”

 

So, this means is that the Aetna MA plan is on hold and will not be implemented on September 1st.  We are sure that the City will appeal Hon. Frank’s decision. However, based on the strong words used by Hon. Frank’s “Decision & Order On Motion” we believe that this Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) will stand.

 

We are awaiting the City’s next move and more importantly Aetna’s next move.  It is possible that Aetna may withdraw.

 

The full Judge's decision can be read here:
https://iapps.courts.state.ny.us/nyscef/ViewDocument?docIndex=AP/FOvxASbEUkuDjB8jy2g==

 

From the Organization of Public Service Retirees:

 

WE WON THE TRO!!!

 

DO NOTHING!    SEND IN NO FORMS!   MAKE NO CALLS TO OPT OUT!   EVERYTHING STOPS!

 

IF YOU ALREADY GOT YOURSELF INTO A PLAN FOR SEPTEMBER 1, YOU NEED TO CALL AND FIND OUT HOW TO PAUSE IT OR WITHDRAW.

 

IF YOU ALREADY FILED YOUR WAIVER, NOTHING HAPPENS.  YOUR CURRENT PLANS STAY IN PLACE!

 

SUSCRIBE TO THEIR EMAIL LIST TO RECEIVE THEIR NEWSLETTER & IMPORTANT UPDATES:
Click here to Subscribe 

 

We now have THREE full court cases running, so please make a donation and get your friends to do so too, especially those who doubted us!  

We won EVERY TIME SO FAR!!

 

Make Your Check or Money Order payable to: 


NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees

 

Mail to:

 

NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees
c/o JSH Accounting Services, LLC      

PO Box 143538      

Fayetteville, GA 30214

 

June 22, 2023          PRESIDENT VALENTINO HONORED AS VETERAN OF THE GAME AT YANKEE STADIUM



Association President Bob Valentino was honored at Yankee Stadium on June 20th as "The Veteran of the Game."
The video of both the Mets and the Yankees salute can be seen here: 

https://vimeo.com/843243697/8794090307?share=copy

June 13, 2023                                REPORT OF THE JUNE MEMBERSHIP MEETING

The meeting called to order by President Bob Valentino at 12:15 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag and a moment of silence for departed and sick members.  Since our last meeting we lost 4 members.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto reported 14 members still did not pay dues.  12 members were removed after no response to numerous emails and phone calls where necessary. We have received many donations that are still coming in.

Regarding our health care issues, the City is filing on June 16th and our law firm will file on June 20th.  We should know something before June 30th.  There is a rally scheduled for June 20th at which time a bill is scheduled to be introduced at the City Council to have the GHI/Senior Care plan remain in effect. All the information is on our website.

Executive Secretary Tom Greer was congratulated on his promotion to Sergeant in the Nassau PD. He is assigned to the 7th Pct., NCPD.  We also celebrated several birthdays and anniversaries, in particular, Fran and Bob Forrester on their 60th.

Bob Valentino reported there are still some rooms available for the Florida Reunion on July 24th to the 26th.

Bob Valentino was honored at City Field on June 3rd and will be honored on June 30th at Yankee Stadium as Vetran of The Game.  Tickets to games at Citifield can cost $285.00, but Bob can get tickets for $100.00.

Bob mentioned he bowled a 300 game on Tuesday, June 8th. Congratulations, Mr. President!

Member Joe Asti gave a very informative summary on Concealed Carry Permits for members living in New York and Nassau County.  For example, in Nassau County there is an HR218 class given by Safety Quest at SafetyQuestLtd.com or call 631-876-5438.
  
Bob wished everyone a good summer and urged the members to visit the website often for updates.

The next meeting will be held at Spuntino's on September 6th at 12:00 pm, and the meeting wasa adjourned at 1:50 pm.

Respectfully submitted, Bob Forrester (with able assistance from his wife, Fran)

June 8, 2023                                      NYC MEDICARE ADVANTAGE PLAN UPDATE

This is the latest information form the Organization of Public Service Retirees NYCorgOfPublicServiceRetirees@gmail.com
 

Comptroller Lander Declines to Register Medicare Advantage Contract Pending Litigation 
 

New York, NY – The Comptroller’s Office declined to register the City’s contract with Aetna to transfer City retirees to a Medicare Advantage program for their health care coverage. A pending lawsuit, brought on behalf of retirees, questions the City’s authority to enter into such an agreement. 

Comptroller Brad Lander issued the following statement:

“The Comptroller’s Bureau of Contract Administration carefully reviewed the City’s contract with Aetna and returned the contract to the Office of Labor Relations without registering it. Pending litigation calls into question the legality of this procurement and constrains us from fulfilling our Charter mandated responsibility to confirm that procurement rules were followed, sufficient funds are available, and the City has the necessary authority to enter into the contract.

“As a matter of public policy, beyond the scope of our office’s specific Charter responsibility for contract registration, I am seriously concerned about the privatization of Medicare plans, overbilling by insurance companies, and barriers to care under Medicare Advantage. 
“I appreciate the work of the Municipal Labor Council and the Office of Labor Relations to negotiate improvements to the Aetna contract to address some of the concerns raised by retirees. However, the broader Medicare Advantage trends are worrisome. Recent investigations identified extensive allegations of fraud, abuse, overbilling, and denials of medically necessary care at 9 of the top 10 Medicare Advantage plans, including CVS Health, which owns Aetna. 

“As health care activist Ady Barkan wrote last month, noting that half of Medicare enrollees nationwide have been transferred from traditional Medicare to private Medicare Advantage plans: ‘Once corporations privatize every inch of the public provision of health care, we may never get Medicare back.’”

This article also appeared in The Dialy News today and this item was added:

Lander’s Advantage move may end up being mostly symbolic, as the Charter gives a mayor the power to override a comptroller’s contract rejection.

From the Organization of Public Service Retirees:

As we said yesterday, we CANCELLED the rally for today, June 8th. The air quality is very bad and we are very concerned for your health and safety. We have been advised that the legislation WILL NOT be introduced from the Council Stated Meeting as to keep Councilman Barron safe too!  We WILL RESCHEDULE THE RALLY for EITHER JUNE 20 or 22.  STAY TUNED!

This was sent out yesterday, June 7th, by the Organization:

Justice Lyle E. Frank, the same judge who decided our first two cases (and who was upheld unanimously twice by the Appellate Division!) will be handling our current case. That is good news!

We have learned that he has set a briefing schedule for the case: the City will file its responsive papers on Friday, June 16 and our lawyers will file our reply papers on Tuesday, June 20. Soon after, there will be oral argument, which retirees may attend.

For those of you who are worried about this: the judge will definitely issue a decision before the June 30 deadline to opt out or waive our City health insurance: he will either issue an interim order to push back the June 30 deadline or he will rule on the preliminary injunction before June 30. We definitely will know before the June 30 deadline!

So what should you do now? 
If you are planning to waive your City health benefits, don't file the City form just yet. The OLR form is on its website here: 2023-retiree-special-enrollment-form.pdf (nyc.gov)

You can see that you can mail it, fax it, or submit it electronically.

You should investigate your options if you want to remain in traditional Medicare with a Medigap plan, and if you need it, a Part D prescription drug plan. If you live in New York, you have plenty of time to get those plans with an effective date of September 1: I was told that you can apply as late as mid-August, but no need to wait that long, of course. In some other states, you may have to apply for a Medigap plan soon to have it effective on September 1. Find out whether you should start the process now and whether you can withdraw your Medigap application if we win our case. You can apply for a Part D plan online (if you need one) and that does not take very long to do.

Marianne emphasizes that you should check to see whether you can get out of your Medigap plan in the event that you need to sign up for one soon but then don't need it because we win our court case. (At least for the Medigap plan I am likely to take, I can cancel before it takes effect or get out of the Medigap plan easily if our court case drags on and the Medigap plan has already taken effect, and only pay for the months that I was enrolled in it). But check on this!

They are still pushing for Council legislation that would protect our choice of a premium-free Medigap plan. The draft calendar for the Council meeting on Thursday indicates that Council Member Barron will introduce our legislation but it remains to be seen if he actually does it.

For the spouses of a deceased retiree currently taking the COBRA benefits from NYC for their health plans, we inquired as to their standings and were informed of this from the Office of Labor Relations (OLR). That benefit is for life as opposed to the line organization benefits which are only for three (3) years.

This was their response:

Thank you for your correspondence to Commissioner Campion regarding COBRA recipients.

COBRA recipients will go into the Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan, as the current health plans will cease to exist for these individuals as of September 1, 2023.

Please be advised that a communication from Aetna to COBRA recipients regarding the change in health coverage went out last week.

Below is a link to COBRA information, including rates.

https://www.nyc.gov/assets/olr/downloads/pdf/health/cobra-package-january-2023.pdf

June 7, 2023                          PRESIDENT BOB VALENTINO HONORED AT CITY FIELD METS GAME
Bob was honored as the Veteran of the Game on June 3rd at Citi Field. The video can be seen here:

https://youtu.be/QLdUL0fczy0

June 6, 2023                              RETIREES ORGANIZATION FILES SUIT IN COURT AGAINST AETNA PLAN
The Organization of Retired Public Employees filed their lawsuit this morning in State Supreme Court to enjoin the City from moving ahead with the Aetna plan. They know it's been a bit of a wait, and we know some of you were stressed out, but we think that when you read the papers, you'll agree that our lawyers did a great job. Thanks to all of you who provided affidavits (hundreds of them!) for the case.

The rally scheduled at City Hall for Thursday, June 8th was cancelled due to dangerous air quality from the fires in Canada. It has been re-schduled for the 20th or 22nd. The City Council is expected to have the legislation introduced on the 8th for keeping the GHI plan in effect.

We will post updates as we receive them.

May 29, 2023                               OUR EXECUTIVE SECRETARY IS RECEIVING HIS NEW STRIPES



We are very proud to announce the promotion to Sergeant of our Executive Secretary, Tom Greer. Tom will receive his Sergeant stripes on Tuesday, May 30th at the 7th Nassau PD Pct.

Tom was also honored by radio station WBAB as their Friday's First Responder Recipient last week and received a $100 gift card at a Moes Southwest Grill restaurant.

In the celebration story, it was mentioned that Tom followed his father's footsteps (also Tom Greer) and started in the Transit Police in 1986, rolled over to NYPD in '87 then into Nassau PD in '94. He worked in Highway from '98 to the present and hopes he can stay in Highway until he retires.

Well done, Tom! Hearty congratulations and much sucess.

May 21, 2023                                FLOYD HOLLOWAY'S VIDEO FROM THE BLACK PATCH REUNION

At the NY Black Patch Reunion held on Saturday, May 20th, a number of our members, specifically, Floyd Holloway, along with
Joe Carney from the Transit PBA, Ken Chiulli and Steve Mona from the Vandals Unit, and Hugh Lennon from the Firearms Range Unit, were honored. Unfortunately neither Floyd or Joe were able to attend, but Floyd had a video made of his thanks for the honor.

It can be seen here https://youtu.be/viDlKDGhX8Y

May 17, 2023                         LATEST INFORMATION ON THE CITY AETNA MEDICARE ADVANTAGE PLAN
Thanks to Alan Berkowtz berky4@aol.com for sending this information

The NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees www.nycretirees.org still recommends holding off any action as they are still taking this issue to court. Once a decison is made, we will inform all our members and fellow retirees.

The latest information for the City's Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan which is scheduled to start September 1st can be viewed in this PDF

May 4, 2023                                                        REPORT OF MAY MEMBERSHIP MEETING

Minutes of the NYCRTPOA on May 3, 2023 held at Spolini's Restaurant, Richmond Hill, Queens, NY.

The meeting was called to order at 12:15 pm by President Bob Valentino with the Pledge of Allegiance to The Flag.
Since the last meeting we lost 14 officers.

Financially, we are doing well and have received many donations since the last donation period ending on March 12th and we have 20 new members.

Bob spoke about the Defensive Driving Course which will be held on Saturday, May 20th, 10:00 am at 51 Atlantic Ave. in Floral Park.  Those interested can contact Robin Becker at tigercat824@verison.net.

Other items discussed were the Bowling Dinner/Dance to be held at Verdi's on June 9th; the NYCTP Florida Reunion July 24th to the 26th at the Radisson Resort, Cape Canaveral, FL and the Black Patch Reunion in Myrtle Beach, Sept. 14-18, 2023.  For more information please see our Website.

Frank Crisa and Tony Lomanto were again congratulated on the great work done on the Beyond The Line magazine.  Frank encouraged members to send stories to him which they would like to share.  He also requested photographs which would be returned to you.

Two Birthdays were celebrated - Frank Crisa and Vinnie Servedio

The NYC Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan was discussed with help from Jay Finn of the NY 10-13 Association.  Members were urged to do nothing until we hear from the organization.  Updates will be posted on the Website and by email.

Members were also encouraged to send donations to the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees.  They are litigating very hard on our behalf.  See their Website www.nycretirees.org for more information.

Bob also suggested we visit our Website every week for updated info.

Tom Greer spoke about Bob Valentino, a Military Vet, who will be honored on June 3, 2023, at 4pm (end of the third inning) by the New York Mets at Citi Field for his Vietnam Military Service. It may or may not be televised. Bob was an Army Sergeant and is a Purple Heart Recipient. He also received a Presidential Citation and 50 Year Commemorative Medal.  He served from 1967 to 1968.

Congratulations, Bob, from the Board and members, and thank you for your services.

Tony Piazza gave an update on the VSF.  Our new bill will be presented to the Committee, and we will keep at it.

Bob thanked everyone for coming.  The meeting at this new location was a success, and there was a great turnout.  Members were happy to see those they haven't seen in a long time.

The next meeting will be June 7th at Verdi's in Westbury.

The meeting was adjourned at 3:00 pm.

Respectfully submitted
Bob Forrester, Recording Secretary

April 12, 2023                             INFORMATION FROM RETIRED PUBLIC EMPLOYEES ORGANIZATION


Information from the Employees Organization regarding "opting out."

First, do not do anything yet. The organization will let you know when you need to take any action. There is no May 1 “deadline” – even under the current information from OLR, you have until the end of June to “opt out.”

Second, unless you live in the 10 counties which are covered by HIP VIP and want to join that plan, you do not want to “opt out” of Aetna; to do that would mean that you would be put into the HIP VIP plan.
 
If you want to keep traditional Medicare, and we do not prevail in court or at the City Council, you will need to waive your insurance coverage, and must fill out a form to do so. But again, do not do that yet.

If you have any questions, please email NYCOrgofPublicServiceRetirees@gmail.com

Below is the relevant text of the OLR web page: health-retiree-responsibilities (nyc.gov)

On September 1, 2023, the City will discontinue the Senior Care Plan and all other retiree plans except Aetna Medicare Advantage and HIP VIP. All Medicare-eligible retirees and Medicare-eligible dependents, with the exception of HIP VIP members, will be automatically enrolled in the Aetna Medicare Advantage PPO Plan.

HIP VIP members who wish to leave HIP VIP and enroll in the Aetna Medicare Advantage PPO Plan must complete the Health Benefits Program Retiree Special Enrollment/Waiver Form (available May 1, 2023).

Retirees who reside in the HIP VIP service area (Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Queens, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland and Orange counties) and wish to participate in HIP VIP instead of the Aetna Medicare Advantage plan may do so by contacting Aetna at 1-855-648-0389 or by visiting Aetna's website at CONY.AetnaMedicare.com  and indicating that they wish to "opt out" of Aetna Medicare Advantage PPO Plan.  No opt-out form will be required.  They must contact Aetna between May 1, 2023, and June 30, 2023 in order to do so.

HIP VIP members who wish to remain in the HIP VIP plan do not have to do anything.

Retirees who do not wish to be enrolled in the Aetna Medicare Advantage PPO Plan or HIP VIP can waive City health coverage. Retirees must complete the Health Benefits Program Retiree Special Enrollment/Waiver Form (available May 1, 2023) to waive City coverage. Retirees who waive health coverage are not eligible for Medicare Part B reimbursement.

Contact the Aetna NYC Retiree dedicated call center at 1-855-648-0389 (TTY: 711), Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Aetna will work with you to resolve any questions about the benefits, the network, or clinical transition questions.

April 2, 2023                                  UPDATE FOR PRE-MERGE TRANSIT ID CARD RENEWAL

Thanks to Alan Berkowitz berky4@aol.com for sending this out

NEW PROCEDURE FOR TPD ID CARDS

 
There is a new procedure for former members of the TPD to obtain their retired law enforcement ID card.  The cards are still being issued by Transit Bureau but there is no longer a need to appear in person at Transit Bureau HQ in Brooklyn.
 
At least one month before your card is due to expire (or if your card has already expired) call Transit Bureau at 718-610-4660,  Inform the PAA that you’re calling to obtain a new TPD ID card.  The PAA will ask you a series of questions and ask for a contact telephone number. 
 
About a month later you will receive a call from Transit Bureau ID card section.  You will have to email them a copy of your driver’s license, your current ID card, and a digital photo of yourself from the waist up in front of a neutral colored background (no hats or sunglasses please). 
 
After processing, a new ID card will be mailed to you via certified mail.  If you have any questions, contact Transit Bureau at 718 610 4660 or email them at: TBHQPERSONNEL@NYPD.org.

March 30, 2023                                       CITY SIGNS HEALTH PLAN CONTRACT WITH AETNA

Seal - CKL

THE CITY OF NEW YORK

OFFICE OF THE MAYOR

NEW YORK, NY 10007

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 30, 2023

CONTACT: pressoffice@cityhall.nyc.gov, (212) 788-2958

 

MAYOR ADAMS, OLR COMMISSIONER CAMPION ANNOUNCE SIGNING OF MEDICARE ADVANTAGE CONTRACT

 

Contract with Aetna Ensures Lower Deductible, Cap on Out-of-Pocket Maximums, and New Benefits for City’s Retirees

 

Plan Also Significantly Lowers Numbers of Procedures Requiring Prior Authorization

 

NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Office of Labor Relations (OLR) Commissioner Renee Campion today announced the official signing of the contract between the City of New York and Aetna to provide a Medicare Advantage plan to the city’s roughly 250,000 retirees and their dependents. The New York City Aetna Medicare Advantage plan will continue the city’s long-standing commitment to providing high-quality, premium-free coverage to the city’s retirees and their dependents.

 

“Our administration has never wavered in our commitment to provide retirees and their dependents with high-quality, sustainable coverage while allowing us to rein in the skyrocketing costs of health care and the strain it is placing on our city’s budget,” said Mayor Adams. “This plan improves upon retirees’ current plans, including offering a lower deductible, a cap on out-of-pocket expenses, and new benefits, like transportation, fitness programs, and wellness incentives. We also heard the concerns of retirees and worked to significantly limit the number of procedures subject to prior authorization under this plan. This Medicare Advantage plan is in the best interests of both our city’s retirees and its taxpayers.”

 

“For months, the city has worked with the Municipal Labor Committee to diligently negotiate this contract with Aetna to provide a custom Medicare Advantage program to the city’s retirees,” said OLR Commissioner Campion. “This new plan provides substantial improvements to retirees’ health coverage, as well as new and enhanced benefits. We thank the MLC for their partnership throughout this process and Aetna for working with us to provide the best possible plan for New York City retirees.”

 

“We’re honored to offer a customized Medicare Advantage plan that provides high-quality, affordable, and convenient health care for City of New York retirees who’ve devoted their careers to serving New Yorkers,” said Dan Finke, president, Aetna. “With nearly 60 years of Medicare expertise and experience, we stand ready to serve retirees through our network of primary care and specialty physicians, mental health providers, and hospitals they already know and trust.”

 

The signing of the five-plus year contract follows the official approval by the Municipal Labor Committee (MLC) on March 9, 2023. As of September 1, 2023, retirees currently enrolled in the city’s Senior Care plan will automatically be enrolled in the Medicare Advantage plan. Medicare-eligible retirees and their dependents will also be able to opt out of the Aetna Medicare Advantage plan and enrolling in the city’s HIP VIP Plan instead.

 

The city’s Aetna Medicare Advantage plan will provide a lower deductible for retirees than their current Senior Care plan. The plan also places a cap on out-of-pocket expenses and offers new benefits to retirees, including transportation to certain doctors’ appointments, fitness programs, and wellness incentives. Additionally, the plan significantly limits the number of procedures requiring prior authorization.

 

“We’ll continue to build a strong partnership with the City of New York and the Municipal Labor Committee, which were and will remain instrumental in helping engage retirees in their health care,” said Rick Frommeyer, senior vice president, Aetna Group Retiree Solutions. “We’ve already proactively collaborated on multiple ways to educate retirees about our Medicare Advantage plan benefits and to help ensure a smooth transition on September 1, 2023. We look forward to meeting retirees at one of the many upcoming open enrollment meetings.”

 

The city is committed to working with Aetna to ease the transition to the new plan and answer any questions from eligible retirees. Aetna has built a custom website specifically for City of New York retirees. The website has resources for retirees to look up their doctor, find out detailed information about their plan, and register for online and in-person information sessions. Retirees can also contact Aetna’s dedicated call center at 855-648-0389 (TTY: 711), Monday to Friday, from 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Aetna will additionally be holding a series of in-person town hall meetings beginning next week in the New York metro area and other states with high Medicare-eligible retiree populations to answer any questions and assist them with the transition.


In response from the Organization of Public Service Retirees:

Tens of thousands of retired teachers, cops, firefighters and other city workers say Adams is wrong.
Citing federal studies that show Advantage plans can deny beneficiaries “medically necessary” care, retirees have called on Adams since he took office to let them stay on traditional Medicare, contending that the switch would put them at risk of losing access to certain doctors, medical procedures and drugs.

A group called the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees successfully convinced courts last year to block the first iteration of the Adams administration’s Advantage plan — and Jake Gardener, a lawyer for the group, told the Daily News on Thursday that they will file another lawsuit in hopes of derailing the new plan as well.

“We will be challenging this violation of the retirees’ health care rights in court,” Gardener said. “This is just the latest example of the city trying to save money on the backs of retired and disabled city workers. What this would do is to jeopardize the health of a quarter million elderly and disabled city workers.”


Municipal employees rally against Medicare Advantage, in lower Manhattan on March 9, 2023. (Barry Willilams/for New York Daily News)

Retirees are resisting the Advantage switch, in part, because Aetna will require pre-authorizations for some forms of care, a protocol that does not exist under traditional Medicare. They fear this will result in diluted coverage, and have depicted it as a life and death issue.
“Retired firefighters, police, EMT workers and teachers will be forced into a privatized, managed care plan that has strict in-network, pre-authorization and referral requirements that will cause potentially life-threatening delays and denials of care,” said Marianne Pizzitola, a retired FDNY EMT who leads the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees.

“Many of the quarter-million respected public servants, and all the current NYC public employees, will be harmed by this damaging decision by Mayor Adams.”
I
n his statement, Adams said he sympathizes with the angry retirees.

“We also heard the concerns of retirees and worked to significantly limit the number of procedures subject to prior authorization under this plan,” he said.


New York Municipal retirees protest the Municipal Labor Committee voting to eliminate traditional

Medicare as the only healthcare option in lower Manhattan, New York City, on March 9, 2023. (Barry Willilams/for New York Daily News)

The reason courts blocked Adams’ first plan was because it would’ve levied a $191 monthly premium on retirees who wanted to opt out of Advantage and stay on traditional Medicare. The courts found that penalty violated a local law requiring the city to provide its retirees with premium-free coverage for life.

Adams’ administration, with support from the city’s Municipal Labor Committee, says the new plan structure complies with the court rulings because there will no longer be a $191 penalty on the table as the premium-free Advantage coverage is the only insurance option available to retirees.

Gardener disagreed and claimed the new plan is also illegal.

“Forcing them into Medicare Advantage by not even giving them the option of keeping their existing health insurance is far more damning and just as illegal,” he said.

Gardener declined to say exactly on what grounds his group will challenge the new plan, but added:

“We have a number of grounds that we will be relying on to ensure that the savings the city is looking to achieve is not obtained solely on the backs of retirees.”

We will have to wait and see what happens next with any possible court actions.

 

March 19, 2023                                LETTER SENT  FROM OFFICE OF LABOR RELATIONS

As a retiree under Medicare and using the health benefits from the City of New York, you should have received this letter from the Office of Labor Relations (OLR) explaining the latest issues regarding the planned Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan recently approved by the MLC. At this time, it is only a contract sent to the City by Aetna and it has to go through the approval process. Does anyone really think it will not be approved by the City? The organization of retired public employees is going over that proposed contract and is ready to file a court action should they deem it necessary.

The letter from the OLR can be read HERE

March 9, 2023                                 MARCH MEMBERSHIP MEETING AND UPDATE ON NYC HEALTH PLAN
From Recording Secretary Bob Forrester with able assistance from his wife, Fran

MARCH MEMBERSHIP MEETING

Meeting was called to order by President Bob Valentino with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, followed by a moment of silence for the 18 deceased police officers since the last meeting as well as their families and also for sick members. We mentioned member Jack Rossiter’s grandson, NYPD PO Colin Rossiter, who he lost last week.

Bob mentioned that there is much information on the website and encouraged the members to avail themselves of it.

On May 20th, there will be a Black Patch Party at Verdi's from 12:30 to 4:00 pm.  Floyd Holloway, Joe Carney, Hugh Lennon and Ken Chiulli will be honored.  There will be a few new members inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame at the affair, but future inductees will only be held at the annual Association Christmas / Holiday Party.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto reported we have $32,139 in checking and so far, we received $18,000 in donations. This helps to offset the increasing number of members attaining Lifetime Membership status as dues are no longer required. Every donation is well appreciated. He also mentioned that 55 members have not yet paid their dues, and they may be removed from membership if not received in the next 2 months..

The cost of publishing the newsletter has gone up along with postage and mailings. The next issue, 2023-1, will be finalized by this coming Sunday, March 12th, and will consist of 48 pages.  Any letters or donations received after that will be in the next issue. Tony and Frank were thanked for all their hard work.

For New York City residents only, information on renewing your carry permits can be found on the website below. Unless you completed an HR218 course before August 31, 2022, you will be forced to take the 16-hour training course and the 2 hours at the firing range. The alternative is a permit but only for your home premises.

The Labor Council is in favor of the new Medical Plan and will be voting on Thursday, March 9th. Members are encouraged to donate to the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees so that the litigation can continue at PO Box 941, Venice, FL.34284

FOP Lodge #317 will hold a special Memorial Gathering to honor Joe McGarry from 12:00 to 4:00pm on Saturday, April 15th at The Hartigan House, 517 Central Ave., Bethpage, NY. There will be a Chinese Auction. Full details will be posted on the “Meetings and Events” page when finalized and emails will be sent out to Lodge 317 members. All proceeds of the event will go to the Tunnel to Towers Foundation in memory of Joe McGarry.

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 3rd From 12:00 noon to approximately 2:00 PM at Spolini's Restaurant 116-25 Metropolitan Ave. (off Union Turnpike), Richmond Hill. Members asked for another location closer to Brooklyn & Staten Island and this place was found to have a large function room and good food. Attendance at this meeting will determine it as a future location.  Tony and Bob will be sending information on parking and directions.

June 9th there will be a Bowling League Dinner/Dance at Verdi's.  Emil Stucchio and the Classics will be performing.  The cost is $140.00 per couple but could be less depending on the number of people attending.

Last year we had 50 new members join.  This year so far, we have 43 new members. Please advise Tony Lomanto if you have a new email address or have recently moved.

The meeting ended at 2:15 pm.

Bob Forrester


 

AETNA MEDICARE ADVANTAGE HEALTH PLAN APPROVED BY THE MUNICIPAL LABOR COUNCIL TODAY

 As mentioned above, the MLC voted today in favor of accepting the proposed Aetna Medicare Advantage Plan. Today, March 9th, they actually voted in favor of the plan. 79% of the voting unions voted YES and the voting is based on the number of union members. The UFT, DC37 & the Sanitation union have the most votes.

Crane's Business magazine posted this article about the vote. It can be viewed in this PDF

There are also a number of videos on You Tube with Marianne Pizzitola from the NYC Retirees Organization describing the latest events in their fight against the City.

We will post ongoing information here as they develop.

March 3, 2023                        LATEST NEWS ON NYPD RULES FOR CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS


INFORMATION FOR RETIREES LIVING IN NYC WITH CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS

NYC CC PERMITSFOR NYC RETIREES LIVING IN NYC 5 BOROUGHS ONLY FROM THE LBA BREAKFAST MEETING JANUARY 2023

THIS SHOULD ANSWER ALL THOSE QUESTIONS I HAVE BEEN GETTING.
IF YOU ARE NOT DUE TO RENEW I SUGGEST YOU PRINT THIS OUT AND KEEP IT

NEW TRAINING REQUIREMENTS FOR SOME RETIREES RESIDING IN NYC TO RETAIN CONCEALED CARRY PERMIT: We would like to acknowledge and thank Marty Browne (Retired Sergeant) and Director Nicole Berkovich, from the NYPD License Division, for coming to the LBA meeting to answer questions from the membership regarding the new requirement mandating that some retirees attend a sixteen (16) hour Gun Safety Course and a two (2) hour Live Ammunition Firing Course to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permit issued by the New York City Police Department. This requirement, as of now, only applies to those retirees whose licenses are issued via the NYPD License Division. The different requirements apply in the following three (3) unique scenarios:

Retirees Who Retired Prior To September 1, 2017:

For those retirees who separated from service prior to September 1, 2017, and who receive their Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) permit from the NYPD License Division, must satisfy the following requirements to successfully renew their permit:
- Attend a sixteen (16) hour Gun Safety Course and a two (2) hour Live Ammo Shooting Course – This is currently a once in a lifetime attendance requirement. OR - Possess proof of attending at least one HR 218 course (ID Card) between the periods of September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022. OR - Proof of having attended any other Gun Safety related course during the periods of September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022. (check with pistol license of the course is acceptable)

Retirees who retired between September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022: As per the stipulations spelled out in the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, retirees who separated from service during this time period are NOT required to provide any additional proof (training or HR 218) to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon Permit.

Retirees who retired on or after September 1, 2022: If they were employed/Active between September 1, 2017, through August 31, 2022, are NOT required to provide any additional proof (training or HR 218) to renew their Concealed Carry Weapon Permit.

If a retired member who resides in New York City and who receives their Concealed Carry Weapon permit from the NYPD License Division does not satisfy the renewal mandates stipulated above, the likely results are as follows:
IF RETIREE POSSESSES A: Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, Does NOT Have a Valid HR 218 = License Division will eventually attempt to confiscate and safeguard your weapons. License Division will usually allow approximately six (6) months after the members current permit expires for member to renew application for Concealed Carry permit.
Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, VALID HR 218 = Allowed to retain and carry weapon(s). However, will be unable to purchase ammunition and buy/sell gun(s) in New York State. The License Division may eventually contact you to ascertain if you wish to renew Carry or convert to Premise Permit.
Retired ID Card, Expired Concealed Carry Permit, Valid HR 218, Valid Premise Permit: Allowed to retain and carry weapon(s). Premise Permit also allows you to purchase ammunition and to buy/sell gun(s) in New York State.
**Please note that a valid HR 218 is a key requirement in retaining and carrying your weapon when you do not satisfy the CCW renewal requirements and therefore do not have a CCW Permit issued by the NYPD License Division.**
Routinely, retired members will receive a mailed notice from the NYPD License Division, three (3) months prior to their current CCW Permit expiring advising them how to apply for their renewal and what requirements are mandated to successfully renew their CCW. If a member switches from a Concealed Carry Weapon Permit to a Premise Permit, the member may switch back to a CCW permit if they can now satisfy the requirements. However, this conversion cannot take place until the next scheduled permit renewal date (usually three years).
If you are a retiree who receives your CCW Permit from the NYPD License Division and have additional question regarding this matter, please contact 646-610-5872.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
IT WAS ASKED ABOUT OTHER COUNTIES OUTSIDE NYC WHO ARE NOT AS STRICT WITH THESE RULES FOR RETIRED NYPD COPS LIVING THERE AND RENEWING.
THE REPLY WAS THAT THOSE OTHER COUNTIES "ARE NOT OBEYING THE NEW LAW"

February 18, 2023                                     MEDICARE PART 'B' AND IRMAA RE-IMBURSEMENTS and
                                               SENATE AND ASSEMBLY BILLS - PROHIBIT DIMINUTION OF HEALTH BENEFITS

All this information can be viewed on the NYC Health Benefits page https://tinyurl.com/3tt9wru4 sent by Lou Hollander.
Please note you can go back as far as 2019 if you haven't already filed.




SENATE AND ASSEMBLY BILLS - PROHIBIT DIMINUTION OF HEALTH BENEFITS

ASSEMBLY BILL A3768 -

SUMMARY - 2023-02-07 Assembly referred to governmental employees SPONSOR- Stacy Pheffer Amato [D]

Prohibits the diminution of health insurance benefits of public employee retirees and their dependents or reducing the employer's contributions for such insurance; defines employers to include the state, municipalities, school districts, and public authorities and commissions. Assembly Member Email | New York State Assembly (nyassembly.gov)

SENATE BILL S2728

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: 2023-2024 Legislative Session

Section one provides that the level of health insurance benefits, and the employer contributions made toward such health insurance, for certain retired firefighters, police officers, and their dependents
shall not be diminished below the benefits. and contributions in place as of May 1, 2008.
S2728 (nysenate.gov) member-directory-1-31-2023-updated.pdf(nysenate.gov)

SPONSORED BY
James Sanders Jr.
(D) 10TH SENATE DISTRICT
CURRENT BILL STATUS -IN SENATE COMMITTEE CIVIL SERVICE AND PENSIONS COMMITTEE

February 4, 2023                                OUR VSF LEGISLATION RE-INTRODUCED IN ALBANY &
                                                          LATEST NEWS ON THE CITY'S PROPOSED HEALTH PLAN 
From Alan Berkowitz

S5107 (the Variable Supplements Bill) was reintroduced in the 2023 legislative session under a new print number: S4158.

Senate Bill S4158

Extends the benefits of the variable supplements fund to all New York city police officers, firefighters, housing police, transit police, correction officers and registered domestic partners

Sponsor: SEN. SANDERS

Recent Actions:
• Feb 3, 2023 - REFERRED TO CITIES 1      Review S4158 on WWW.NYSenate.gov

As soon as we hear of an Assembly bill introduced, we will post that and urge all retirees to contact their Senators and Assembly representatives to vote in favor of these bills.


LATEST NEWS ON NY CITY'S PLAN TO CHANGE OUR HEALTH PLANS

One good news is the recent judge's ruling that Emblem Health / GHI Senior Care cannot charge for co-pays. This took effect on January 22nd. It is recommended that should your doctor insist on charging for the co-pay, either show him the judge's ruling or pay it and keep a receipt. Emblem Health is contesting this ruling in court and if they fail to win, they will set up some way to reimburse you.
                                                                      

From the NYC Health Benefits Program website health-retiree-responsibilities (nyc.gov)


Senior Care members, EmblemHealth has suspended the $15 co-pay for certain services offered through the GHI Senior Care Plan due to on-going litigation and pursuant to court order.

Until further notice, no $15 copay will be required for the services listed below.

  • Office visits (PCPs)
  • Office visits (Specialists)
  • Allergy Testing/Injections
  • Chiropractic Services
  • Podiatry (non-Routine)
  • Cardiac Rehab
  • Pulmonary Rehab
  • Vision Care (Medicare-covered)
  • PT, OT & Speech therapy
  • Diagnostic lab/X-ray (including Hi Tech Imaging)
  • Radiation therapy
  • Partial Hospitalization - Mental Health
  • Partial Hospitalization - Substance Abuse

* * * * *

From the NYC Council:
City Council leaders announced they have no plan to pass a bill pushed by Mayor Adams that would allow his administration to charge retired municipal workers for health insurance — and multiple sources in the chamber told the Daily News that the legislation is unlikely to ever get a vote.

City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams
The bill is a last resort in the Adams administration’s longtime effort to enroll the city’s roughly 250,000 retired workers in a cost-cutting Medicare Advantage Plan that critics say would result in inferior health coverage.
Courts have twice blocked the administration from implementing the plan due to a provision that would slap $191 monthly premiums on retirees who want to opt out of it in favor of staying on traditional Medicare. While Advantage would be free, the courts have said the administration’s proposed financial penalty for other coverage runs afoul of a local law known as 12-126 that requires the city to provide its retirees with no-premium coverage for life.

As a result, the mayor has for months pressed the Council to rewrite 12-126 in such a way that the $191 fee would become legally feasible — but Speaker Adrienne Adams said Thursday afternoon that her body has no plan to vote on legislation introduced at his request that would achieve that end.
“There is no scheduled next step,” the speaker said during a news conference at City Hall.

During a contentious Council Labor Committee hearing earlier this month, Adams administration officials said that if the Council does not adopt the 12-126-tweaking bill by Jan. 26, they would move ahead with the drastic option of eliminating all health insurance options for retirees besides Medicare Advantage.

The administration has maintained that option would comply with the court rulings since there’d be no financial penalty at play.
Given that the Council’s final meeting of the month was Thursday, Speaker Adams confirmed the body will not act by the stated deadline. That presumably means the administration will follow through on its pledge to make Advantage the only available plan for municipal retirees.
Related video: Mayor Eric Adams says 'no room in for migrants' in New York City (WION) Play Video Mayor Eric Adams says 'no room in for migrants' in New York City UnmuteView on Watch

Adams spokesman Jonah Allon declined to disclose the administration’s next step. Instead, Allon reiterated that the mayor and the Municipal Labor Committee believe the administration must move ahead with Advantage because it could save the city hundreds of millions of dollar per year at a time of great fiscal uncertainty for the municipal government.

“The city and the Municipal Labor Committee worked together to take advantage of the federal funding for Medicare Advantage plans that would permit us to continue providing high-quality, premium free coverage for retirees while saving approximately $600 million a year — savings that are especially critical as we continue to face a skyrocketing health care crisis and other fiscal challenges,” Allon said.
Before the full Council would ever be able to consider the bill favored by Adams, the Labor Committee would have to approve it — and a source inside the panel said that’s highly unlikely.

“The appetite isn’t there to move this bill,” the source told The News, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.
Another source close to Council leadership agreed. “It’s dead,” the insider said of the bill, noting that no Council member came out in support of it during this month’s hearing in the committee.

In her press conference, Speaker Adams declined to speculate on whether there’s any support for the bill in the chamber.
She cast doubt over the Jan. 26 deadline floated by the administration, though.
“It’s not even clear that the deadline was ever [active],” she said before lamenting that the administration hasn’t yet provided the Council with a detailed contract for its preferred Advantage plan. “One of the questions at the hearing was, ‘Where’s the contract?’ ... We didn’t even have a contract to deliberate on as a body, so for me, that was a very important piece of information that we would need to go forward in any decision.”

The NYC Organization for Public Service Retirees filed the lawsuit that prompted courts to block the first iteration of Adams’ Advantage push — and has indicated it will seek additional legal intervention if his administration attempts to make it the only health plan available to them.
“If they did that, I’m sure we’ll see them in court pretty quickly,” Marianne Pizzitola, a retired FDNY EMT who leads the retiree group, said at last month’s hearing to cheers from her members.

Ever since former Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration first tried to roll out the Advantage plan in the fall of 2021, thousands of retired teachers, EMTs and other municipal workers have argued that such a switch would destroy their coverage. They’ve pointed to federal studiesshowing that Advantage plans — which are administered by private health insurance providers, unlike traditional Medicare — can deny “medically necessary” care for beneficiaries.

Adams’ administration has disputed such concerns and said Advantage would provide retirees with robust coverage, while allocating savings to hedge against a city budget deficit that could grow as large as $6 billion in coming years.

January 18, 2023      GREAT NEWS !!! CITY COUNCIL REFUSES TO VOTE ON ADMIN. CODE CHANGE          

From the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees  NYCorgOfPublicServiceRetirees@gmail.com

Greetings! 

Good Morning everyone! The City Council will NOT be voting on Intro 874 tomorrow. We will now THANK the Council for NOT taking this bill up.. Please call and email the Civil Service and Labor Committee. See below the draft message for the contact Info. We will have more information coming!

Script for Members

Good Morning/ Good Afternoon
My name is ________________________and I am a retiree. The purpose of my call is to “Thank” the City Council Member for not supporting the passage of Intro bill 0874 from the Civil Service and Labor Committee. By having this bill laid aside, you have restored some of our faith in the system. We appreciate that your member heard our message to not listen to the Mayor and that retirees should not bare the burden of the city's budgetary issues. The Medicare Advantage Plan will not provide us with proper healthcare coverage and we should not have to pay more to receive less care. We discovered there are several funding programs totaling over 300 million dollars that can be used to help balance the budget. There will be a bill introduced soon that will protect the status of our future healthcare, and we hope that your member will continue to stand with us and support it.
Thank you for hearing my statement, and being the voice for retirees. Thank you for listening.

Respectfully,
(Your name), retiree, # years, Department
****************************

List of City Council Members on the Civil Service and Labor to be called: (CALL BOTH NUMBERS)

28 Speaker Adrienne E. Adams Legislative Office: 212-788-6850
District Office: 718-206-2068

10 Hon. Carmen De La Rosa Legislative Office: 212-788-7053
District Office: 917-521-2616

3 Hon. Erik Bottcher District Office: 212-564-7757

5 Hon. Julie Menin Legislative Office: 212-788-6865

11 Hon. Eric Dinowitz Legislative Office: (212) 788-7080 District Office: (718) 549-7300

15 Hon. Oswald Feliz Legislative Office:212-788-6966 District Office: 718-842-8100

21 Hon. Francisco P. Moya 212-788-6862 District Office: 718-651-1917

22 Hon. Tiffany Caban 718-274-4500

37 Hon. Sandy Nurse Legislative Office: 212-788-7284 District Office: 718-642-8664

40 Hon. Rita Joseph Legislative Office: 212-788-7352 District Office:718-287-8762

49 Hon. Kamillah Hanks Legislative Office: 212-788-6972 District Office: 718-556-7370

EMAIL THE CIVIL SERVICE & LABOR COMMITTEE:
Copy/Paste these email addresses into your email:
aeadams@council.nyc.gov
CDeLaRosa@council.nyc.gov
ebottcher@council.nyc.gov
tcaban@council.nyc.gov
JMenin@council.nyc.gov
edinowitz@council.nyc.gov
ofeliz@council.nyc.gov
fmoya@council.nyc.gov
SNurse@council.nyc.gov
RJoseph@council.nyc.gov
KHanks@council.nyc.gov

The File for the List of CM is here if you want to save it: https://mcusercontent.com/.../b8e.../Civil_Service_labor.pdf

If you are on Twitter and Instagram, please comment and share our messages.
We also created an OPEN FaceBook Page https://www.facebook.com/NYCRetirees

And Please send your donations in to continue this fight!  We have THREE lawsuits running concurrently, and if the Mayor eliminates all health plans, we WILL have a 4th!!

There will be NO Vote on Intro 874!  You do NOT need to come to City Council!

December 21, 2022                               NEW PRESCRIPTION PLAN FOR THE NYPD DEA

From Alan Berkowitz  berky4@aol.com

Dear DEA Member:

Effective February 1, 2023, the DEA is launching a new prescription drug program. This new program will replace our Benecard prescription drug plan. The new prescription drug program will be administered by Express Scripts. Our members should experience significantly enhanced prescription drug benefits with no disruptions to your current prescription drug needs.

By mid-January of 2023, you will receive a letter from Express Scripts introducing you to our new program. You will also be receiving a “welcome package” and a new prescription drug card.

For the past several years, the DEA Board of Officers has been committed to making improvements to the union’s health benefits for both active and retired members. In 2021 and 2022, we introduced our new Cigna dental plan for active and retired members, increased life insurance benefits for active members, and instituted our new Northwell Health body screening program. And in 2023, we expect to make improvements to our mental health and wellness programs. We will continue to examine other benefits to enhance the lives of our members and their families.

Beginning February 1, 2023, we look forward to you — the “Greatest Detectives in the World” — experiencing our new pharmacy benefit through Express Scripts.

In the interim, have a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season and a joyous New Year!

Fraternally,
Paul DiGiacomo
President

November 22, 2022                       RETIREES ORGANIZATION WINS IN STATE APPEALS COURT
Marianne Pizzitola of the Organization of Public Service Retirees has succeeded in court in a decision rendered by the NYS Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Judicial Department. 

WE WON!    This means TWO courts interpreted the law the same way and the retirees are vindicated in our effort to push back on the City from trying to take away our benefits.  The MLC and City have tried everything from back room deals to trying to change the law we won our case on, to threatening the City Council and even using an arbitrator who is supposed to be neutral, to say on the eve of Thanksgiving, if the legislative body doesn’t do what’s being demanded of it he will eliminate all plans.   Truth is there are options. They just didn’t want to implement them.    WE STILL NEED TO MAKE CALLS AND EMAILS TO CITY COUNCIL!!    They may still try to pull the “nuclear option” or change the code!   Our work is NOT done!
 
Today, the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees won their case in the First Department NY Appellate Court.   The Court was very clear Code § 12-126 (b) (1) provides: “The city will pay the entire cost of health insurance coverage for city employees, city retirees, and their dependents, not to exceed one hundred percent of the full cost of H.I.P.-H.M.O. on a category basis.”
The court correctly determined that Administrative Code § 12-126 (b) (1) requires respondents to pay the entire cost, up to the statutory cap, of any health insurance plan a retiree selects.
 
The Retirees applaud the decision.
 
Marianne Pizzitola

The entire court decison can be read HERE 

November 3, 2022                                     REPORT OF NOVEMBER MEMBERSHIP MEETING


Minutes of the membership meeting held on November 2, 2022.

The meeting was called to order by President Mike Lanning with the Pledge of Allegiance to The Flag and asked for a moment of silence for the 7 departed members since our last meeting in September, any deceased family members, and all fellow retirees on the Sick List.
Mike then introduced our Editor, Frank Crisa, and thanked him and Treasurer Tony Lomanto, for their work in putting together our great newsletter, "Beyond the Line."

The finances of the association are doing well. We have received donations from many of the members, especially from many Lifetime Members who no longer have to send in dues..

Mike welcomed Robin Becker, the President of the Transit Police Memorial FOP Lodge 317, and her board.

Our next meeting, the annual Christmas and Holiday Party,  will be held on December 7th at Verdis. Any paid member who attended the Black Patch luncheon in October will not have to pay the $25 door charge.

The NY Reunion will be held at Antun's on Tuesday, November 15th at 4:00 pm The cost is $65.00 in advance and $70 CASH at the door.

Nominations and election of Executive Board Members for 2023 was conducted by Vinnie Servedio.  The results are as follows:

President - Bob Valentino
First Vice President - Deo Fasolino
Second Vice President - Vinnie DiMaio
Executive Secretary - Tom Greer
Financial Secretary - Gregory Stripp
Treasurer - Tony Lomanto
Recording Secretary - Bob Forrester
Sergeant At Arms - Mike Lanning

Tom Greer reported there were 192 people at the Mets-Yankees game this year at $163.00 per ticket. To change to a location closer to home plate would cost about $200.00 per ticket. 
It was decided to stay in the same section for the 2023 games.  A total of 100 tickets will be ordered.

Several members in Queens requested a meeting location closer to them and a location in Howard Beach was suggested.  A meeting starting at 12:00 noon and ending at 2:30 pm before the rush hour traffic was proposed.

Legislative Director Tony Piazza spoke at length about the problems facing the new medical coverage plan. The City, faced with the possibility of the City Council not amending the city charter section 12-126, is now using the threat of only having one health plan for all employees, both active and retired. It would be, of course, the Medicare Advantage Plan currently being negotiated with Aetna Health Insurance.

We have 50 new members as can be seen in the latest issue of "Beyond the Line."  Deo spoke about the need to get new, younger members to join and said that at the Black Patch Meeting and the FOP State Convention, he distributed 200 applications.

1st VP Bob Valentino requested that prayers be offered for the 2 police officers shot in Newark, NJ. Thankfully, the culprit was apprehended.

The meeting adjourned at 2:45 pm.

Respectfully submitted,
Robert Forrester, Recording Secretary

Regarding the issue of the City Council amendment change, the Organization of Public Service Retirees has put together a chart that shows the possible changes the City and the Municipal Labor Council as compared to what we now have.
It can be seen in the PDF HERE

 

September 27, 2022          LATEST UPDATE ON RENEWING YOUR PISTOL PERMIT WITH THE NEW STATE LAWS
                                                                      ONLY TO MAKE MATTERS MORE CONFUSING

Thanks to Alan Berkowitz and Lou Hollander for forwarding this information as received from RETIRED LIEUTENANTS' ASSOCIATION NYPD

Dear Members,

Below are some excerpts from info we have gotten related to the new law affecting the renewal of your NYS/NYC Concealed Carry Permits.
It is unclear how the State/City will verify how long you have maintained your HR218. I would recommend checking with the County that issued your permit regarding their policies. You may want to consider saving your old HR218 cards in case they are needed to prove your years of certification. Some Counties had permits with 5 year expirations, NYC had 3 year expiration, and some did not expire.  Per the new NY State law, all permits now expire every 3 years. Some of the HR218 schools are already offering the new course for those needing it.

Fraternally,
Michelle Schaefer
President 

From the NYC Pistol License Section:

The new law for carry licenses has changed.  Per the new law, you need 16 hours of classroom instruction and 2 hrs. range time. 
MOS retired over 5 years who do not have an HR218 are required to complete this training class.  If you are retired over 5 years and have an HR218, send a written statement that you have an HR218 and kept it active for how many years. Include a copy of the HR218 front and back.  An HR218 dated before 9/1/2022 which is in effect at this time will be enough to satisfy the requirement. If no HR218, then the required training has to be completed to renew the license.

From the DEA: Update on Firearms License Renewal for Retirees

As of September 1, 2022, all licensees, including retired members of law enforcement, must have sixteen (16) hours of training and two (2) hours of shooting practice. The State of New York plans eventually to check back three (3) years of the applicant’s social media accounts, but, as of this writing, personnel is not yet in place at the Licensing Division to conduct social media checks. H.R. 218 certification will be accepted only if it was acquired prior to September 1, 2022. The caveat is that the Licensing Division will assume the retired member of the service had H.R. 218 certification for consecutive years and didn’t just newly acquire it. We hope more information will be forthcoming, but as of this writing, this is what is known at this time.

For Nassau County residents,

I called the Pistol Permit Section and was told that Nassau County Supervisor Blakeman has a bill on his desk that will allow renewals on a 3 year basis rather than the current 5 and training will not be required for those with HR 218 certification. I am assuming Suffolk County will have a similar exemption. More on this when this matter is finalized.

September 13, 2022                  ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL FLORIDA R.O.M.E.O. LUNCHEON
From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

Great photos from the Spring Hill FL R.O.M.E.O luncheon can be viewed in this PDF

September 9, 2022                  REPORT OF SEPTEMBER MEETING & LATEST ITEMS OF INTEREST

From Recording Secty Bob Forrester (and his wife, Fran)

President Mike Lanning opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag followed by a moment of silence to remember 21 departed fellow retirees since our last meeting, their family members, fellow police officers, those on the Sick List, and our Armed Forces serving in harm’s way.

Mike informed the membership that the next issue of “Beyond The Line” is coming out by the end of September or early October, and thanked Frank Crisa and Tony Lomanto for doing a great job with the magazine.

Mike also thanked Tom Greer for doing a great job on the Subway Series held on July 27th.  Tom is currently working on the one for next year.

Bob Valentino asked the members present to ask any fellow retirees who are not members, to join the association. He also spoke about the Black Patch Meeting to be held on Saturday, October 1st, 12 Noon at Verdis.  Your $60.00 fee for the Black Patch Meeting includes free admission to the Retirees Christmas Party.  There were five new members inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame and will be honored at the Black Patch dinner

Bob also mentioned the NY Reunion at Antun's on Tuesday, Nov. 15th starting at 4:00pm, with thanks to Paul Murphy and Marilyn Scahill.

The Bowling League meets on Tuesday mornings, and anyone is welcome.

Tony Lomanto spoke about the new PBA Dental Plan which is a good one. It is important that you go the PBA website and click on the link to register with CIGNA. This plan is only for PBA members.

The negotiations between Emblem and Blue Cross came apart.  The City is now negotiating with Aetna.  There will be a speaker at the Sept. 29th meeting at 12:00 Noon at the LI Shields meeting at the Coral House in Baldwin addressing this issue. (See the important update below)

Sun. Sept. 11th was to be the last day to be registered in the 911 Victims Fund for any illnesses suffered as a result of 911. Today, (9/10) the Governor signed (S9294A/A10416) which extended the deadline to file a Notice of Participation under WTC Disability Law. The new deadline is September 11, 2026.

Tony spoke about the new Gun Law Bill.  It might be a good thing to obtain an HR218 Permit - you could carry your gun from state to state.  For those living in the NY Metropolitan area, you can call Instructor Roland M. Grant of SAFETY QUEST at phone number 516-446-0127. Various law enforcement organizations are seeking to have amendments added as this bill, like previous gun laws, was rushed through without much thought and input. This law does not pertain to active or retired LEOs regarding "sensitive areas" as mentioned in the bill which can be read in the State FOP posting below. It is important that you have a current Transit Police or NYPD Police Identification card to get the HR 218 certificate.

Mike introduced the new President of FOP Lodge 317, Robin Becker, who said a few words to the membership.

The next Retirees meeting will be held Wednesday, November 2nd, 1:00 pm at Spuntino's Restaurant in Williston Park. We still do not have the OK to resume meetings at the State FOP building because of renovation issues.

Respectfully submitted,
Robert Forrester
Recording Secretary


Thanks to Alan Berkowitz for forwarding this important health plan update:

Here we go again!!!!!

ADAMS AND UNIONS STRIKE DEAL ON MEDICARE PLAN Plan

Adams and Unions Strike Deal on Shift to Cost-Cutting Medicare Plan
by Sam Mellens - NY Focus - 9/08/22 - UPDATED

The mayor and major city unions plan to press the City Council to clear a path for a privatized Medicare plan for retired city workers.

At a meeting Thursday morning, the administration of Mayor Eric Adams and major unions representing municipal employees agreed on a proposal to clear the way for their long-held goal of switching retired city workers to cost-saving private Medicare Advantage plans.
The insurance shift, first reported by New York Focus more than a year ago, would likely save the city hundreds of millions of dollars a year and help pay for current workers’ benefits — but many retirees fear that it could decrease their access to health care.

At the meeting, union leaders agreed to a proposal from the administration to make a joint request to the City Council, asking it to amend city law to allow the city to charge retirees for their current health care plans. That would remove a legal roadblock that has held the switch up in court and led the insurer that had won the contract to administer the plan to back out in July.
“It wasn’t all wildly enthusiastic votes, and people were expressing qualms. But the difficulty is we’re not quite sure what else to do, because there is a financial problem here,” said Robert Croghan, chair of the executive board of the Organization of Staff Analysts, a union representing city office workers across numerous agencies. Croghan estimated that 85% of the dozens of union representatives present voted in favor of the proposal.

Oren Barzilay, president of Local 2507, a union representing fire department employees, told New York Focus that he voted against the proposal. “The law gives us protection in terms of having our current health benefits,” he said. “Why would you open up that Pandora’s box not knowing what could happen?”

The city projects that the shift to Medicare Advantage will save $600 million annually, which would go to a fund controlled by city unions that is used to pay for current city employees’ health insurance and other benefits. Without that additional cash, the benefits that the fund provides could be at risk.

The city and union leaders have claimed that retired city workers would receive the same quality of care under a Medicare Advantage plan as they currently receive under Senior Care, the free insurance plan that the city provides to most retirees. But many retirees have raised concerns that a Medicare Advantage plan would provide less coverage and carry greater out-of-pocket costs than Senior Care.
The city had planned to incentivize retirees to switch to Medicare Advantage by requiring them to pay $191 a month to maintain their coverage under Senior Care. In a March decision on a lawsuit filed by retirees to stop the switch, state Supreme Court Judge Lyle Frank ruled the city can’t force retirees to pay for their current care.

Frank’s ruling threatened the viability of the switch as a cost-cutting device. By April, over 65,000 retirees had opted out of the Medicare Advantage plan — more than one out of every five retired employees.

The proposed legislation, endorsed by the mayor’s Office of Labor Relations and the unions’ Municipal Labor Committee, would change the text of the law that Frank based his ruling on to allow the city to force retirees to pay to maintain their current coverage.
The proposal is detailed in a letter from Labor Relations Commissioner Renee Campion to Harry Nespoli, chair of the Municipal Labor Committee, a coalition of city workers’ unions. The legislative change “would help ensure the parties have the necessary flexibility to obtain quality and affordable health insurance coverage for covered individuals,” the letter states. The letter also says that at least one plan for retirees would remain premium-free, as Senior Care currently is.

Frank’s ruling allowed the city to eliminate Senior Care entirely, but the city hasn’t given any indication that it is considering that step.
The Adams administration is appealing Frank’s ruling. But if the City Council adopts the Office of Labor Relation’s proposed legal change, then getting the ruling overturned might be unnecessary. “It’s an end run around the court decision, in a sense,” Croghan said.

The unresolved Medicare Advantage situation is likely to be a significant sticking point in upcoming contract negotiations between the unions and the city, City & State reported on Wednesday. If the unions think that their health care costs are likely to go up, they may ask for larger raises, which would cost billions of dollars. That could be an ask that the city is reluctant to grant, especially since current projections show it is already likely to face multi-billion-dollar budget gaps in upcoming years. Croghan predicted that the City Council will approve the proposed change. “It’s something that Adams wants, and now the Municipal Labor Committee says they want it too. Why would the City Council not go along with it?” he said.

Barzilay said that public opposition to the plan, which has been vocal in the past, could present an obstacle.
“There’ll be people testifying for it, and people testifying against it. It’s just a matter of who’s more persuasive to the City Council,” he said.



From the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees (as of September 1st)

This link is to bring awareness of the misguided information that is being disseminated.  You will read our reply to the UFT RTC Health Committee Chair.   We included his emails  for your reference. 

Grab a cup of coffee....  (or a bottle of wine!) 

This information brings out the "lies" perpetrated by the UFT and the Health Insurance Stabilization Fund.


The NYS Fraternal Order of Police has put out a "Frequently Asked Questions" (FAQ) about the latest Gun Control laws recently passed by New York State. Please keep in mind that as a retired Police Officer, many of these laws do not apply.

That report can be read HERE   Note Questions #17 & 25 as it relates to retired Police Officers.

July 11, 2022                                           NEW CIGNA DENTAL PLAN FROM THE PBA & DEA
A new dental plan is being offered to members of the NYPD PBA and the DEA through CIGNA. As it appears, using an in-network provider would cover many procedures at no cost to the member. Out of network providers would normally charge a fee, place a claim for you and you would be responsible for the difference. A compelete explanation from the PBA can be viewed in this PDF

July 11, 2022                     CEREMONY FOR RET. P.O. BRENDAN 'JOE' McGARRY AT PINELAWN NATIONAL CEMETERY

On Wednesday, July 6th, a special ceremony took place at the Pinelawn National Cemetery in Farmingdale Long Island for the internment of the ashes of (Ret. PO) Brendan “Joe” McGarry, his wife, Christine, and their son, James. Members of the State FOP, FOP Lodge 317, family and friends, and a contingent of the Patriot Guard Riders on their motorcycles were in attendance.

Flag bearers and all others stood at attention when the cemetery vehicle carrying the ashes pulled up at the ceremony site. They were placed on a stand with the American flag in front of the case with the U.S. Marine Corps plaque holding Joe’s ashes. Ret. TP Det. Eugene Hennigan, a deacon of the church where Joe and Christine attended, presided over the religious aspect. At the end, Taps were played, the urns were removed for internment and the ceremony was over.

Joe, Christine, and James were now together. May they Rest in Peace.

Photos taken at Pinelawn may be seen in this Power Point folder HERE

June 6, 2022                          LOU HOLLANDER AND BILL WOOD HONORED BY FLIGHT TO D.C. (correction)
I made an error describing the Honor Flight trip that Lou Hollander and Billy Wood recently took to Washington DC. Lou was kind enough to point out my error and gave me a better description of the event. - Tony

Lou Hollander and Billy Wood were selected by the Honor Flight Committee to take the trip to DC and to see the various memorials situated there, most notable The Vietnam Wall and the War Memorials. Lou mentioned that he was looking at the name on the Wall of a friend whom he grew up with. 

The Honor Flight Network is a national network of undependant hubs working together to honor our nation's veterans with an all-expenses paid trip to the memorials in Washington DC, a trip many of our veterans may not otherwise be able to take. Participation in an Honor Flight trip gives veterans the chance to share this momentous trip with other veterans, to remember friends and comrades lost, and share their stories and experiences with each other.

Attached is a short rendition and photos by Lou of his trip to Washington, DC that can be read here: HERE

Well done and thank you all for your services.

May 27, 2022                              NYPD DEA HONORS THE LATE TRANSIT DET. GEORGE CACCAVALE



Our 1st VP, Bob Valentino, along with Ret. D/Sgt. Fred Ametrano attended a ceremony honoring the late Transit Det. George Caccavale who was killed during a robbery. DEA President Paul DiGiacomo Jr., honored George's daughter, Carla Caccavale with plaques and to Bobby and Fred also. Freddie was at the scene at the time of the killing of George Caccavale.

The YouTube video can be seen here:      https://youtu.be/gqCrs29BWGI

May 14, 2022                                                  REPORT OF MAY MEMBERSHIP MEETING

MINUTES OF THE MAY MEETING AT SPUNTINO RESTAURANT

Thanks to our 2nd VP Vincent DiMaio for this report.

7:15 PM First Vice Pres. Bob Valentino called the meeting to order and led the Pledge of Allegiance.

Pres. Mike Lanning and his wife Doris are not present because they’re out sick with Covid 19, as was Recording Secretary Bob Forrester and his wife Frances not present due to Bob having a recent knee replacement surgery and is currently in rehab.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto read a list of those members who have passed away since the last meeting and had a moment of silence for them, any family members passing, fellow Police Officers in the country killed in the line of duty and all serving servicemen & women.           

Bob Valentino urged members to donate to the Public Employee Organization that is fighting to keep our current medical plans. He also mentioned the following functions at Verdi’s:  Bowling Dinner, Friday, June 10, “The Happenings” who sang “See You in September” will be there. Saturday, October 1, Black Patch Sports Award Luncheon 12:30 to 4:00 PM, and our Christmas/Holiday Party is scheduled for Wednesday, December 7, 12:00 to 4:00 PM.

Bob also said that we should all sign up for emails from Louie Hollander, as they are very informative, and mentioned the Police Memorial at the NYS FOP HQ that took place on May 7, which was cold and rainy. State FOP President Mike Essig paid homage to Joe McGarry who was remembered for all his service to the FOP. At this meeting, we all raised a toast to Joe.
Lou can be contacted at keystonecop1@verizon.net

At this meeting, Bobby Valentino mentioned that one of our members present, Ret. Capt. Bob Kent, recently underwent heart surgery. Bob explained that he always felt he was in good health until it hit him. Thankfully, he came through and is recovering and we wished him well.           

Tony Lomanto spoke about Medicare Advantage Plan. Everything is on hold at this time. Judge Frank ruled that NYC cannot impose a premium on the GHI/Senior Care plan if you wish to keep what you have as it is contrary to the NYC Administrative Code of free health care for life. At this time, approximately 60,000 NYC Medicare eligible retirees so far have opted out of the MAP, representing a major loss to the City who anticipated $600,000,000 (million) reimbursement from Medicare. You can still Opt-Out and forms were available at the meeting or you can complete the form electronically at this Link https://nyc-ma-plus.empireblue.com/optout

The City appealed the decision of the court, and the case comes up in September. As for deductibles and co-pays, they were not mentioned in the court decision and will remain in effect until further notice.

Executive Secretary Deo Fasolino reminded members to check if your dentist is a member of the new PBA CIGNA Dental Plan which starts July 1st before switching plans.

Legislative Chairman Tony Piazza, spoke on the Variable Supplement Fund update.  He wrote a letter to Mayor Adams about Home Rule and requesting support for the bills, So far, we have not received a reply. which is needed to move forward with the VSF effort. Tony said that Home Rule should not be necessary as we worked for a State agency and not the City of New York. At present, they are still in committee and the feeling is that any bills relating to police are not looked upon favorably. That and the fact that many legislators are not in their offices but rather handling legislation by Zoom or other digital "work from home" methods. The current legislation ends in June so if our bills don't even get to the floor or the issue of "Home Rule" isn't resolved, they are dead.

Sgt-at-Arms Tommy Greer spoke about Mets/Yankees Game. Tickets which are still available for $160.00 each. The seats are in the same location as last year - City Field, Section 129, July 27, 2022, 7:00 to 10:00 PM.           

Member Vinny Monfredo and his guest, Ret. NYS Trooper Steve Colano spoke about Dr. Vick Pamoukian, MD, who is a Vascular Surgeon and is providing free testing on May 21, 2022, at 400 So. Oyster Bay Road, Suite 205, Hicksville, NY, 10:00 to 4:00 PM. See the flyer on the Meetings & Events page. The doctor was at our March meeting and explained what will be done at the screening for carotid and leg circulation. Bring your ID, insurance card and comfortable clothes. A reminder will be sent out via e-mails to the members and check it out on the Meetings & Events page.


Tony Lomanto then introduced Robin Becker, the new President of FOP Lodge 317. She mentioned the next lodge meeting Thursday, May 12 at K of C Floral Park, NY at 7:00 PM.

The next meeting will be at Verdi’s, Wednesday, Sept. 7, 12:00 to 4:00 PM.

The 50/50 drawing was held with member Bill Wiese donating his winnings back to the association.

9:00 PM the meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,
Vincent R. Di Maio
Second Vice President

May 4, 2022                          LATEST NEWS FROM THE PUBLIC SERVICE RETIREES ORGANIZATION
Thanks to Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net for sending this out

The latest information regarding the NYC proposed Medicare Advantage Plan Program (MAPP) can be seen HERE
There is very good information from Medicare as to proper health coverage from these Advantage plans.

April 24, 2002           PHOTOS FROM THE FUNERAL OF JOE McGARRY AND THE STATEN ISLAND LUNCHEON and
                                                         LETTER OF SUPPORT FOR VSF FROM NYPD DEA
    

Photos from the funeral of Lifetime Member Ret. P.O. Brendan 'Joe' McGarry can be viewed HERE 
and the video I took can be seen on You Tube by clicking on this link:  
https://youtu.be/OgaLkfpmmv8y

Talk about a "small world."  We received a recent email from member Kevin Costigan who told us that his son, Father Christopher Costigan, who is the Pastor of the church where the funeral mass was held for Joe McGarry, St. Martin of Tours, in Bethpage, Long Island, was to perform the mass yesterday and he gave a very warm eulogy for Joe..

Photos from the Staten Island Lunch Bunch can be viewed 
HERE

The letter of support form the NYPD DEA can be viewed HERE

April 2, 2022                             VERY GOOD INFORMATION FROM THE CHARLOTTE NC 10-013 CLUB

Thanks to Alan Berkowitz berky4@aol.com for forwardng this information.

The full newsletter from the North Carolina NYPD 10-13 Club can be viewed here: 
http://www.charlotte10-13.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/4-April-2022-10-13-Newsletter.pdf

There is some very good information regarding catastrophic medical costs included in their newsletter.

March 19, 2022                                          REPORT OF MARCH MEMBERSHIP MEETING

Report of the March membership meeting from Recording Sect'y Bob Forrester, with assistance from his able wife, Fran:

 

The meeting was held at Verdis Caterers in Westbury, Long Island, and we had approximately 60 members attending.

 

The meeting was called to order by President Lanning with the Pledge of Allegiance followed by a moment of silence. Treasurer Tony Lomanto read off the names of 35 fellow retirees who were reported passed away since our last meeting in December.

 

Member Vincent Monfredo brought a guest speaker, Dr. Vic Pamoukian, a vascular surgeon with offices in Manhattan, Queens, and Hicksville, and is offering vascular screening to all our members and their family members. He will be setting up a meeting in May at a location to be announced at the membership meeting on May 11th at Spuntino’s Restaurant in Williston Park.

 

Though absent for a court appearance (he's still an active NCPD officer), Sgt-at-Arms Tom Greer has purchased 200 tickets for the Mets-Yankees baseball game scheduled for July 27th at 7:10PM. The seats will again be in the same location as in 2021 - Section 129 by the 3rd base line. If interested, you must call Tom at 631-902-8911 or email at hpb2270@optonline.net  The cost per ticket this year will be $160, which, like everything else, has gone up in cost.

 

Treasurer Tony Lomanto spoke at length of the latest news regarding the proposed Alliance Medicare Advantage Plan the City of NY intends to have in place for retirees on Medicare. As reported, Judge Frank ruled the City cannot impose a cost to the retirees to remain in their current plan and the City, in response, stopped the plan's start date of April 1st and also filed an appeal in court.

We will be informing our members with whatever decision is made in court. So, as of now, you will remain in your current plan, not pay a premium, but you will be paying the deductible and co-pays. The organization of service retirees who filed the court action still advises retirees to OPT-OUT of joining the MAP. The current telephone number of the Alliance program at this time has a recording that it is not necessary to OPT-OUT since the plan will not go into effect April 1st.

Despite that, and from past history in dealing with NYC, it is recommended you file an OPT-OUT form if you have not done so before. The form is available if you click on the "OPT OUT" link below in the posting of March 8th. Follow the instructions to complete the form (one for yourself and one for each dependent) and send it by certified mail or electronically at the website shown.


Tony also mentioned that the latest edition of our great newsletter, "Beyond the Line," will be going to the mailer on Monday, March 21st and should be in your hands within the next 2-3 weeks. It will be a big 48-page issue full of photos and letters.


We would also like to point out the great number of donors who contributed to the Association and we thank them very much for their generosity. Remember, the newsletter only goes out to PAID members, so if you still haven't sent in the dues for 2022, please do so now. We don’t want you to miss a copy of this great paper.

 

Congratulations and best wishes were given to Rita and Ron DiMao celebrating their 54th wedding anniversary. Way to go, guys!!!

 

Larry Lombardo spoke of the Breakfast Communion Mass being celebrated on April 24th honoring, among others, Police Officer Irma Lozada. Full details can be found on the Meetings and Events page. Executive Sec'ty Deo Fasolino made a motion which was seconded to have the Association pay for 4 members to attend the event. They will be Ron DiMaio, John Asti, and Carmella and Al Pelliccia.

 

Deo also spoke of how the laws have changed regarding safe deposit boxes and gun permits when you have a spouse. Deo went through this after his wife, Barbara, passed away last year.

 

Legislative Chairman Tony Piazza spoke of the current status of the VSF. He reported that we still have bills in Albany and that at present, there are only about 300 TPD retirees eligible for the VSF.

 

The 50/50 raffle was held and there being no new business, the meeting was adjourned.

March 3, 2022       JUDGE FRANK ISSUES RULING ON THE NEW NYC MEDICARE ADVANTAGE PLAN

Our thanks to Alan Berkowitz 
berky4@aol.com for sending this out.

Reading Judge Frank's decision after receiving oral arguments from both sides, it appears to us, and please correct us if we are wrong, but he specifically will not allow the City to have retirees who elected to OPT-OUT and remain on their current plan which, in most cases, is the Emblem Health/GHI Senior Care plan, to pay the $191.57 monthly premium for each retiree & dependent. He also stipulated that the City's Medicare Advantage Plan will go into effect April 1st, 2022 and if one has elected to be in it, they can now elect to get out of it in the first 3 months and go back to their previous plan. Also, you cannot be charged the $253 deductible for each plan. That is, if you started with Senior Care and went into the City plan then decided to go back to Senior Care, you would not start with a new deductible.

For further information, you can read the entire judgement HERE

From the NYC Organization of Public Service Retirees <NYCorgOfPublicServiceRetirees@gmail.com>

If you want to remain in your current plan and NOT go into the City MAP, you MUST OPT-OUT now. Have you Opted Out and did NOT receive a confirmation letter?  If so, please contact the Alliance Hotline, 1-833-325-1190 and ask for a confirmation letter mailed or an email.  
This includes all retirees that opted out early in September and October!  You must confirm they opted you out and request proof they received it.  You must submit one form for yourself and one for your dependents.

YOU MUST OPT OUT ASAP.  If you need help please go to our website:  OPT OUT   

March 3, 2022               LOU HOLLANDER HOLDS ANOTHER GREAT R.O.M.E.O. PARTY FOR THE SNOWBIRDS

From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

A few of our snowbird friends were down to spend a couple of months in the Sunshine State so we decided to put together a R.O.M.E.O.  We had about 21 guys in attendance, and we had a great time being with old friends.  As you have seen on too many occasions in my emails, I put out obituaries of someone you have worked with and haven’t seen them in decades. 

Many years of your life was spent working with them and life is passing us by fast. Try to make it a point in getting together with guys/gals you used to work with and reminisce the good old days on the job.

Keep the Spirit of the Transit Police Alive.  You can view the photos from the Tampa by clicking on the .PDF attachment HERE

January 26, 2022                            THANK YOU LETTER FROM NYPD DEA PRESIDENT PAUL DI GIACOMO
We received the following letter from NYPD DEA President Paul DiGiacomo, thanking us for honoring him at our Christmas & Holiday party in December.
 If you don;t know Paul, his father, Paul Sr., was a Transit Police Officer who worked in District 34 for many years. I grew up with his dad in Brooklyn and worked with him in 34 for many years.
I also remember when Paul Jr. was a Housing Police Officer working in Coney Island back in the '80s. He has always been very helpful to members of this association and department for many years.

 

December 19, 2021                                   PHOTOS FROM THE 2021 CHRISTMAS PARTY
You can view the photos taken at the Christmas & Holiday party HERE

December 1, 2021                                                         PHOTOS FROM THE NY REUNION

We want to thank Lou Hollander for putting all the photos he and I took at the NY Reunion into a format that anyone can view. It saves a lot of time not having to save each photo then having to upload them to the server. Lou did it in PowerPoint then saved it as a PDF file. They can be viewed HERE 

Thanks, Lou!

October 9, 2021                                                           OCTOBER MEMBERSHIP MEETING

Thanks to our Recording Secretary Bob Forrester and his lovely wife, Fran, for this report

Meeting was called to order at 1:15 pm followed by the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto updated information on the fellow retirees who passed away since the last meeting. A moment of silence was held for them and for family members who passed and for those on the Sick List, icluding our Sgt-at-Arms, Tom Greer who is home recuperating from recent surgery, along with our Armed Forces and fellow Police Officers serving in harm's way.

President Mike Lanning said the NY Reunion will be held at Antun's on November 16th. from 4:00 to 8:00 pm.  Price is $65.00 in advance by check to Paul Murphy, or $75.00 at the door. Details can be found on the Meetings and Events page.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto advised the members that the Money Market Account will be closed and the funds transferred to the checking account. This was done as our annnual income has dropped as more members become Lifetime Members and regular annual dues stop. With ever increasing printing, mailing, and meeting costs, the asociation can only exist with the dues or donations.
The cost for each edition of the newsletter alone is about $5,000.00. Next high cost is the membership cards and mailings. Donations are always welcome and appreciated, but please indicate if you want a coin sent as our thanks.

The Retiree Association Christmas and Holiday Party will be at Antun's on Dec. 16th at 1:00 pm.  The March Meeting will be at Antuns and the May meeting is planned for Verdis. Other meeting locations and dates will be determined and the members will be notified far in advance. At this time, there will be no more meetings at the FOP Building as it is being closed for renovations. The Board has decided to hold luncheon meetings as more members are finding it difficlut to drive at night.

The next issue of "Beyond the Line" is now at the printer's and will be at the mailer on Tuesday the 12th, to be mailed out. Please keep in mind with the current postal slowdown on deliveries, and since the issues are not first-class, that makes it for even longer delivery times.
 
Executive Secretary Deo Fasolino mentioned that he sees many retired Transit Police Officers writing on Facebook and ending with "Transit Police Forever" and suggested they be contacted and asked to join the Society.

Tony Lomanto discussed the new City Health Plan and answered many questions from the members. Her mentioned the PBA, at a recent LI Shields meeting with Pat Lynch and a member of the Members Benefits department, felt the City plan was favorable over keeping the current Senior Care plan. The City plan offers the same coverage while the Senior Care will have both a monthly premium and will start to have co-pays with no maximum amount.  It looks like the City Plan is favored but we caution members to make their own decison based on needs.

The drug plan was also discussed and it is advised you do not take out the drug rider unless necessary, as a drug plan is available through the line organizations. 

We then gave a round of applause to our Financial Secretary, Greg Stripp, who does a grand job at the door.

After a delicious lunch, the meeting was adjourned at 3:50 pm.

Fraternally,
Bob Forrester

September 12, 2021                             REPORT OF THE SEPTEMBER MEMBERSHIP MEETING
The first membership meeting of 2021 took place on September 8th at Verdi's Caterers in Westbury NY. It was well attended with over 90 members present.

President Mike Lanning called the meeting to order at 1:05 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

Treasurer Tony Lomanto thanked everyone for attending the meeting.  He advised since our last meeting that sadly we lost 146 members, both to COVID and other health reasons.  The members observed
a moment of silence.

Guest speaker, Kim Parker, from the NYC Office of Labor Relations, spoke about the new health program called the NYC Medicare Advantage Plus Plan starting on January 1, 2022.  It is a customized plan from the City of New York and also a National Plan that members can take with them.  It has the same Medicare guidelines. 

Ms. Parker gave a very detailed overview of the plan and answered many questions from the members. 

We should soon be receiving a booklet with enrollment guide and a detailed summary of the Plan.   Ms. Parker also suggested that we could call 1-833-325-1190 for additional information.

Members enjoyed a delicious lunch after the meeting.

Meeting ended at 3;05 pm,

Respectfully submitted,
Robert Forrester

August 5, 2021       STREET RE-NAMING CEREMONY FOR THE LATE DEP. CHIEF VINCENT DeMARINO

.    
            Street re-naming sign                                                     Ceremony gathering            

      
   John Rini, Fred Ametrano, Ron DiMaio, Charles McCray      Ron Kearney, Rabbi Berkowitz, Tony Lomanto

   
      Mark Lipra, Ron Kearney, Bob Betz 

  
                                    DeMarino Family                                 Bob Ganley (c) next to Mrs. DeMarino

September 3, 2020                                                            TRANSIT ROCKS AGAIN !!

From Lou Hollander keystonecop1@verizon.net

Bobby Ganley and Neil Delargy went to the Transit Police Academy together in 1982 and worked together in TPF, District 4.  Bobby tells me Neil was a great guy and left for Nassau PD in ’86 or ’87.  This photo was taken at Neil’s “walkout”.  He left as Chief of Detectives. “Congratulations and lots of luck, Neil”

Way to go for both of these guys! All the best in your retirement, Neil.

March 5, 2020                             VIDEO AVAILABLE FOR PTL. MICHAEL MELCHIONA MEMORIAL MASS

Henry Melchiona contacted us to inform all our members and fellow officers that a professional video was made of the 50th Anniversary Memorial Mass for Hank's brother, Ptl. Michael Melchiona, celebrated this past February 28th.

The video is of excellent quality. Lou Hollander converted it to a YouTube Video which can be viewed on your Smart TV if you have the YouTube app. If you view it on your PC or tablet you can view it in full screen.  I hope you enjoyed watching the video as much as I did.

Click here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIaGFK3T78s  or paste link into your web browser. It is a very moving and heartwarming video. - Tony

Here are some photos from the Mass:

                                                        
                 John Moakley & Henry Melchiona                                                           Tony Lomanto, Henry Melchiona & Mike Lanning

               
         ?, Henry Melchiona, NYPD Comm. Shea, Henry's son                                      Melchiona family & friends gather at end of Mass

                                                                           
              Tony Lomanto doing a Reading during the Mass                                      Comm. Shea speaking to the congregation


       Hank and fellow officers & retirees at the luncheon with a photo of the K9 dog named "Mel" after Mike

February 9, 2020                    TAX SAVINGS FOR FORMER MILITARY MEMBERS LIVING IN NEW JERSEY

For all those fellow Transit officers who live in NJ and were in the military, a new law went into effect in 2020.

Under a new law signed by Governor Phil Murphy, the Veteran Income Tax Exemption is doubling to $6,000 for Tax Year 2019. This exemption is in addition to the $1,000 personal exemption to which each taxpayer is entitled, and any additional exemption for which the veteran is eligible. For Tax Years 2017 and 2018, the exemption amount was $3,000.

Their website is www.st.nj.us/treasury/taxation/military/vetexemption.shtml