Monday, December 22, 2008

Donna and Dean Seaman to STRS Board: call it what it is: A public, deliberate slap in the face to Ohio's retired teachers!

From Donna Seaman, December 21, 2008
Subject: Slap in the face!
It's unbelievable! The STRS board simply will not make any changes to policy! Do you, board members, even understand what is happening in today's economy? Do you know that Pennsylvania's public pension systems were directed by the governor to immediately stop all bonuses paid to investment staff? Do you know that New York is taking steps to follow Pennsylvania's example? Do you read the papers or listen to the news that other states are also doing something about their public retirement systems to downsize, economize, to begin facing today's unpleasant financial facts? Are you waiting for Ohio's governor, who tells us daily how much Ohio's finances are in peril, to finally direct STRS to begin downsizing? Are you unable or just unwilling to face and do what must be done?
Mr. Nehf has been on board only six months and he has already totally adopted the STRS policy of staff entitlement! He gives away an extra non-board approved holiday to employees because his predecessors got away with it. Now he gets away with it, too! He buys into and spouts off the party line about the importance of keeping and "maintaining the best and brightest investment staff!" Meanwhile, Wall Street's "best and brightest" are literally standing in unemployment lines. STRS's "best and brightest" (very well paid and out there spending their bonuses) are relieved that you, board members, have put off any decision to reduce or eliminate performance benefit incentives (bonuses!), recognizing that none of you are willing to bite the bullet and do what is necessary.
By the way -- performance benefit incentives [Performance Based Incentives] -- why don't you begin to call them what they really are: A public, deliberate slap in the face to Ohio's retired teachers!
I'll ask you once again, and believe me, I won't quit asking you: Please start doing what you are legally and ethically responsible to do as STRS board members--monitor and protect this fund for the SOLE benefit of retired teachers!
And happy holidays to you, too, Ms. Cervantes.
Donna Seaman (2002 retiree) and Dean Seaman (1986 retiree)
These are our opinions and not those of any organization.
Larry KehresMount Union Collge
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