Retirees getting screwed again
Subject: the Retiree Rip-off continues! A greedy MD, a cheap healthcare insurance coverage, or....a little of both?
Subject: Medical Coverage
A forum for Ohio educators, sharing thoughts regarding their health care and pension system (STRS Ohio). Researcher John Curry manages a clearinghouse of related e-mails, articles, announcements, etc. His daily mailings include many items that do not make it to this blog. Contact John (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you wish to be on his e-mail list. Kathie Bracy: email@example.com.
1. To be paid by Medicare;2. To accept only the amount Medicare approved for their services, and3. To only charge you ( the patient) or other insurance you have, the Medicare deductible or coinsurance (Medicare's) amount.
1. Be Proactive: take initiative rather than reacting to situationsI feel Leone and Lazares do take this initiative and that Meuser and others react to this initiative negatively2. Begin with end in mind: long term goals (new policies to correct past abuses: Leone and Lazares) need be a 'true north' principle and formulate personal mission statements that document purpose. Challenging leadership to set clear and compelling vision goals. (Leone and Lazares certainly do this while others are comfortable with status quo regardless of behavior and content saying: "Well the Exec. Direc. now knows what we want so we don't have to write a policy. Pretty sad business procedure).3. First Things First: prioritize long term goals vs. less important issues. Activate how and what will be implemented. (All Leone and Larares' policies and motions focus on long term corrections of past problems of mismanagement and abuse).4. Think Win Win: Solutions should benefit staff and sharehlders.***No organization can be effective without clear approach for identifying and satisfying requirements of its customers/ shareholders: (retirees)This needs innovative ways to break barriers between the organization and sharereholders and achieve mutually (organ./shareholders) beneficial outcomes.5. Seek to Understand: build a culture that promotes understanding (that sure didn't happen with OEA bashing Leone for his 2003 Report on spending abuses at STRS by the 5 OEA Board members convicted of ethics violations with a statewide letter impugning his character and questioning his integrity; refusing to retract it when all points were researched, proven and verifiable. Then NEOEA questioned Leone's candidacy when a simple call to STRS verified it hoping, in my opinion, that it would raise doubts and lessen votes. Neither Leone nor Lazares were welcomed to the Board with any friendly gestures but instead greeted with snotty dismissing behavior and remarks such as : "I am not happy to see you here!" Leone has been called names: attack dog, crackpot, etc. and met with automatic opposition without even considering his motions in the minds of many onlookers. OEA is quick to blame all this on Leone who takes their behavior with a grain of salt but refuses to back down from their bravado attempts to dismiss him with false statements such as "Dennis, when this goes down, the motion is killed" when that is not the case. Some Board members speak out of what seems to be ignorance of procedure and policy.
6. Synergies: methods the organization uses to identify and improve opportunities for teamwork (what does OEA and its Board members along with some other Board members do to promote teamwork vs. antagonism and disapproval directing their remarks of personality style?)
7. Sharpen the Saw: spirit of innovation and renewal promoting open and honest assessment of strengths and opportunities for improvement as a starting point. (clearly Leone and Lazares' style ((and CORE)))
1. Appoint committees to study issues considered 'dead horse' issues.2. Switch tactics regarding issues which seem 'dead horse' issues. Use new ways and new standards and not what has always been done.3. Visit sites showing effective efforts4. Increase standards for 'dead horse' issues5. Create test to measure efficiency6. Compare today with 10 yrs ago7. Tighten reins8. Stop blame (OEA tactic pointing finger for 5 yrs at Leone)9. New behavior and skills10. GENERATE SHORT TERM WINS AND RECOGNIZE THOSE WHO MADE THEM A REALITY (That would be a novel approach for OEA)11. All this builds toward an effective and efficient organization for shareholders.
• Awards for investigating STRS and writing his report• Awards for educator advocacy• Continual and constant invitations to speak at RTA and to actives• Many internal changes in policy at STRS• Recognition statewide for his accomplishments but never, NEVER from OEA NOR ORTA in any real sense
• Each new attempt you throw out will be researched and a retort back to show how it also applies to Leone and Lazares' constant quest for a better organization based on retiree requests.• Each attempt will end with: WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO STOP THE SPENDING ABUSES AND MANAGEMENT PROBLEMS AT STRS (I especially love those who say they were here before Leone: (Tim Myers: also the insults to Leone and Angeletti writer) Well, WHAT DID YOU DO? Turned the other way is my guess.
• Help American businesses and organizations become more competitive resulting in higher performances by playing a vital role in helping U.S. gain edge in fierce competitive market• For understanding excellence, quality and performance in all they do.• Flexible• Creative• Long term view• Focus on process and business results AND VALUE TO ITS CUSTOMERS (RETIREES, IN OUR CASE) AND PERFORM FOR INNOVATION• ENCOURAGE INNOVATION• SERVE ITS CUSTOMER; FOCUS ON CUSTOMER (RETIREES)• Focus on information analysis
• Legal expenses paid for by STRS for staff members who hire their own lawyers outside STRS, for whatever purpose, without prior knowledge and consent of the Board• Huge bonuses for over 300 non-investment staff members/employees who do no more than their day-to-day job (investment staff deserve the bonuses)• Bonus checks for investment staff members would still be based, at least in part, on subjective factors instead of solely on benchmark factors• STRS employees who adopt children would still be getting a $5,000 gift from STRS• Cars for staff members and their families to use at their own discretion, permitted by official Board policy• As many as seven Board members taking the same expensive trip and to faraway places such as Hawaii, Palm Springs, Anchorage, Kiawah Island, China, Africa; stays at fancy hotels with a minimum of "business" being conducted• Free lunches/dinners at fancy restaurants; free booze; STRS paying beach bar bills• Free use of STRS laptop computers in the homes of Board members, with no way of really monitoring whether the use of the laptops was personal -- in violation of Board policy• Free credit cards for staff and Board members• Free newspaper subscriptions, personal long distance phone calls, personal fax machines for Board members• Unitemized lunch and dinner bills paid by STRS• Thousand dollar plane tickets to New York, paid by STRS, with no requirement that far more economical reservations be made 30 days in advance• Broadway shows, baseball games, concerts, trips to Kings Island and Columbus Zoo Light Show, etc., either at STRS expense or as gifts from companies doing business with STRS• State Attorney General and State Auditor would still be on the Board• Executive director would still be advising the Board to approve big money contracts without documentation, and most of them would be dumb enough (call it "trusting") to do it• Lawyers would still be inserting language in such contracts after the Board approves it (thanks to the "trustworthy" executive director/staff)• Free second night stays in Columbus and elsewhere (Orlando, etc.) for Board members, following meetings, for no legitimate reason• Free hotel stays and meals for spouse/partner of Board member• There would still be nine members on the Board, with no investment experts whatsoever• Herb Dyer would still be there, along with a number of other Board members whose ethics prevented them from following the spirit and the letter of ORC 3307.15• Child care services for STRS employees would not come close to covering the operating costs of the center; cafeteria services would not be cost neutral• STRS would still be spending $5,000 a year to beautify the front lobby at Christmas time (remember all the poinsettias?)• There would be no policy requiring that the Board receive copies of big ticket contracts before voting on them• Free college education would still be offered/provided for employees, regardless of whether the employee gets a "C" or a "D" in the course• STRS would still be buying tickets to the zoo for employees' families, then appropriating them for themselves so that somebody else would have to pay for the children to go, or they wouldn't get to go at all (talk about Grinches)• Reimbursements for unused sick leave/vacation leave for employees who don't qualify• There would be no policy prohibiting the awarding of sick leave accumulation to rehired retirees who were already paid for their accumulated sick leave at their previous public employer• Escalating, unchecked administrative expenses; unchecked hiring of staff and employees• Waterfalls would still grace the main lobby• The Board still would be allowing the executive director to give severance cash and free health insurance to laid off STRS employees without formal board approval• The Board still would be going into executive session, illegally, to discuss proposed policies• The Express Scripts contract would not have several provisions that it currently does regarding the company’s fiduciary obligations with the board• There would still be secret balloting by the Board• There would be no statutory provision in Senate Bill 133 in 2004 that prohibited the likes of Jack Chapman, Hazel Sidaway, Eugene Norris, and Debbie Scott from ever serving on the board again because of their STRS spending habits• There would be no language in Senate Bill 133 stipulating that future dishonesty on STRS Board election materials (such as saying that you are teaching social studies at Perry High School when you’re really not) will knock you off the board• Mike Billirakis, Jack Chapman, Hazel Sidaway, Eugene Norris, Debbie Scott, Joe Endry and Herb Dyer would not have been convicted in court. Say what you want about it being an Ethics Commission investigation, but it was the Commission's head, David Freel himself, who said that Dennis Leone’s 2003 findings triggered the whole thing (along with Sondra Stratton pushing the Commission relentlessly in 2004).
Labels: Board policy, bonuses, Deb Scott, Dennis Leone, Eugene Norris, Hazel Sidaway, Herb Dyer, Jack Chapman, Joe Endry, Legal fees, Mark Meuser, Michael Billirakis, Spending abuses, STRS, STRS Board