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Left To Right:

Dan Rudd, Sec/Trea
Judy Foster, President
David Schopp, V.P.

MEA - Retired

  • Substitute Teachers Needed - Wonder Why?
  • ORS Officals speak at Presidents' Conclave Nov 12 2015
  • Paul Helder MEA-Retired Consultant, MEA-Retired Officers
  • MEA-Retired Members at Presidents' Conclave Nov 12 2015
  • Board of Directors 2015-16
  • Marquette Chapter of MEA-Retired support Steelworkers
  • Dan Rudd Board Meeting Nov 11 2015
  • Board Meeting Nov 11 2015
  • Branko Bojicic BC/BS at Region 13B
  • Constitution and By-Laws Comm
  • Members at Presidents' Conclave
  • Substitute Teachers Billboard US127
  • Mithcell Steet Cadillac MI
  • East of Cassopollis MI Hwy 60

President's Conclave

MEA-Retired hosted their annual President’s Conclave in East Lansing on November 12, 2015. This year’s theme was “Moving Forward.” We were fortunate to have more than 30 chapter presidents from all around the state join us and it was a very productive day.

We invited guest speakers from ORS, who explained the upcoming changes of CatamaranRX to OptimunRX on January 1, 2016.  Mark Howard and Erica Wolfe made the presentation and explained that new member ID cards will not be issued,  and the all processing information remains the same.  Existing prior authorizations for each member will remain active until a prescriptions original expiration date.  You may view the OptumRx presentation that was shown at the meeting, by clicking here.

Also, Miriam Garcia and Rosemary Carey from Public Affairs were very informative as they discussed the MEA website and many different social media apps that keep everyone up-to-date on MEA business. Christina Canfield, MEA Lobbyist, joined in and gave a brief legislative update on numerous bills coming out of the House and Senate that affect not only MEA active employees, but also MEA-Retired, as it relates to retirement pensions, bargaining rights, and guns in our schools. Paul Helder gave us very good news as MEA announces the new MEA-PAC program that allows retirees to designate 40% of their PAC contributions to go back to the local of their choice. Active employees have had this privilege for quite some time now, but we are very happy that the retirees can enjoy the same benefit moving forward.

Many of the chapter presidents gave great updates on what their chapters are doing to improve membership. We also had several presidents give update on their respective committees. All in all, the day was a big success and we received great feedback as we gear up for 2016!

Action on SB 279 and 280 expected Tuesday

UPDATE:  Senate Bill 280 passed the Senate Tuesday afternoon by a vote of 20-17. Senate Bill 279 passed by a vote of 25-12.

You'll recall these bills were introduced in the Senate this summer, votes in the Senate were not forthcoming due to lack of support.  Senate leadership is planning on running them again tomorrow.

SB 279 is the bill that would not allow district's to provide MPSERS credit to released members regardless of whether it's reimbursed to the district.  The Senate Fiscal Agency had estimated the cost of this to the state would be approximately $900,000 due to the loss in funding.

SB 280 would prohibit district from bargaining any association release time for any purpose unless the cost is reimbursed to the district by the local association..

Click Here to go to our website and TAKE ACTION (email and Senator Phone Number)

MEA-Retired PAC Program

A strength of the MEA’s PAC program is that 40 percent of a member’s contribution goes back to their coordinating council’s PAC to invest in races important to the locals.  However, that strength has instead been a common question for MEA-Retired members – where does my 40 percent go?

The answer has been, since MEA-Retired members are no longer part of an MEA coordinating council, all that money stayed with the state-level MEA-PAC.

Not anymore.

MEA has established a new system where 40 percent of the annual total that an MEA-Retired member contributes will be credited back to the coordinating council PAC for the local association of their choosing.  It could be where you worked.  Or it could be where you live now.  Or you can choose nothing and the full amount stays at the state-level.  The choice is yours – and making the choice is simple:

  • For new contributions, simply write the name of your chosen local association on the envelope where it says “Local”.  MEA will enter that information in our system and use it to credit your contributions for the year to the appropriate coordinating council.
  • For contributions you’ve already made in 2015, just send an email to by December 18 with your name, address and which local association you want credited. We’ll go into the system and note your choice – it will apply to all your contributions for this past year.

You only need to make a selection once – if you never write a local on a PAC envelope again, your decision will be permanent and implemented every year without you needing to think about it.  If you ever change your mind, just write a new local association on your next PAC envelope and we’ll change it.  But you can only choose one local to credit per year, so whatever your last entry for the calendar year is, that’s who’ll get the 40 percent.

Thank you for your continued commitment to MEA-PAC!  Doug Pratt, MEA Public Affairs Director


2016 MPSERS Healthcare Changes FAQ

2016 MPSERS Healthcare Changes


Plan Changes for 2016

Q: Is my plan changing for next year?

A: If you are enrolled in Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for your health insurance, there are some changes to your plan.

  • Medicare –
    • The deductible is increasing from $650 to $700.
    • The Annual Coinsurance Maximum is increasing from $800 to $850. This will bring the Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum to $1,550 (Deductible + Annual Coinsurance Maximum = Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum).
    • The Emergency Room Copay is increasing from $50 to $75.
    • Call BCBSM at 1-800-422-9146 for more details.
  • Non - Medicare –
    • The deductible is increasing from $850 to $900. Members that participate in the LivingWell program can lower their deductible to $700.
    • The Annual Coinsurance Maximum is increasing from $800 to $850. This will bring the Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum to $1,750 (Deductible + Annual Coinsurance Maximum = Annual Out-of-Pocket Maximum).
    • The Emergency Room Copay is increasing from $50 to $75.
    • Colonoscopy coverage is being expanded to include preventative screenings.
    • Coverage for the flu vaccine is being added.
    • Licensed Master’s Social Workers are being added as a covered provider.
    • The deductible requirement for hospice care is being removed.
    • Call BCBSM at 1-800-422-9146 for more details.
  • Catamaran Rx
    • “Me-too” drugs are being excluded from the formulary
      • A “me-too” drug is structurally very similar to already known drugs, with only minor differences.
    • Call Catamaran Rx for more details.
      • Medicare members - (855) 577-6517
      • Non-Medicare members - (866) 288-5209
  • Dental
    • Coverage for dental implants is being added.
    • Contact Delta Dental at 1-800-345-8756 for more details.

Q: Why are these changes being made?

A: The Office of Retirement Services is constantly looking to improve the quality of our plans while keeping in step with the increasing cost of health care. We have a responsibility to the taxpayers and the schools that fund the plan to keep costs affordable, while still providing coverage that helps keep our retirees and their families healthy.

Q: How is my plan affected by the Affordable Care Act?

A: Your coverage through the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System is not impacted by the Affordable Care Act. The changes to your plan do not have anything to do with the Affordable Care Act.

Vendor Changes

Q: Is my prescription drug vendor changing?

A: Yes. CatamaranRx has been purchased by OptumRx. CatamaranRx will continue to be your prescription drug vendor through the end of 2015. You should be receiving a letter in the mail in October announcing the change. You will not be receiving new ID cards. Your Catamaran ID cards will continue to work. All of the CatamaranRx phone numbers will remain the same. The plan design and formulary will remain the same. The only real difference to you will be the name change from CatamaranRx to OptumRx.

Medicare members call - (855) 577-6517    Non-Medicare members call - (866) 288-5209

Q: My HealthPlus plan is ending. Why?

A: HealthPlus has decided to discontinue its plan offering for MPSERS members. You will need to select a new plan to enroll in for 1/1/2016. If you do not enroll in another MPSERS plan, you will no longer have medical or prescription coverage through the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System after 12/31/2015. For more details, please call HealthPlus at (800) 332-9161.

Q: When will I receive my 2016 insurance premium rates?

A: Office of Retirement Services is working diligently to make sure you receive your rates as soon as possible. Our goal is to have your individual rates to you by the first week of October.

CatmaranRx is now OptumRX

Catamaran is now OptumRx: Here’s what you need to know

OptumRx® and Catamaran® joined forces to deliver enhanced pharmacy coverage and a better experience for members.

Your prescription claims will continue to be processed quickly and accurately, and your pharmacy benefits will not change. Read the frequently asked questions below for more details about the combined company, known as OptumRx, and what it means for you.

Will I receive a new ID card?

No. You will continue to use your current ID card. The information that pharmacies use to process and fill your prescriptions will not change.

Can I continue to go to the same pharmacy?

You can continue to visit the same network pharmacy you already use. If there are any changes to the network in the future, we will notify you.

Will my benefits change?

No. Your plan design will remain the same in 2016. Any changes to your prescription drug coverage are determined by your Retirement System and are unrelated to the combination of OptumRx and Catamaran.  

Can I still order my current prescriptions from home delivery?

Yes, your current home delivery prescriptions will continue to be filled through the same convenient mail order pharmacy you use today. You will continue to place new orders and refill home delivery orders in the same way you do today.

Can I still view my prescription information online?

You will continue to use to view and manage your prescription information at this time. If you’ve already registered for the member site, your login information will not change. You can use the information on your current pharmacy ID card to register if you are a new user.