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Old 10-12-2017, 03:49 AM
 
Location: R.I.
972 posts, read 603,846 times
Reputation: 4198

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Quote:
Originally Posted by selhars View Post
OP, here.....Given that the only reasons I want to even work the gov't job is the benefits, and I only want to do 8 years....I will be very pihssed if any retirement benefits are changed -- without grandfathering.
I am no psychic, but honestly if there were cuts to be had I think the first would be extending the FEHB vesting period of 5 years being extended to possibly 10 years. And why I say this is because when you look at the current total Fed BC/BS Self Standard premium to being $709.93/month and out of that the employee/retiree pays $229.64 and the government pays $480.29, that is a big benefit to walk away with having only put in 5 years of service even if someone does not have a pension amount to fully cover their portion the government is still paying the biggest chunk of the total tab.

I work with people still under the CSRS retirement system and they never imagined this would one day be replaced by the FERS retirement system. And I being from what is now known as the old FERS system never imagined newer employees would have to contribute more to their pensions than I do. So it would not surprise me a sliding scale be created where say those retirees with 5-10 years of service at retirement pay 75% of their premium, 10-20 years 50%, then after 20 years 32% give or take which is what all regardless of years of service are paying now. Nothing personal against you, but this would eliminate many of those short timer employment seekers especially high wage earners that often take a 20% pay cut from their equivalent private sector positions for government employment primarily for the heath insurance benefit which would no longer be such a lucrative endeavor if they have to pay 68% of their FEHB premium instead of 32% on top of also paying >4% into their pensions.

I have 2 years and 10 months to be exact to go before I hit my 20 years of service milestone , and I think at that point I "may" be able to feel somewhat confident that I would fall into a years of service grandfathered in range to dodge some bullets, but up until that time I will continue walk on eggshells.
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Old 10-12-2017, 04:40 AM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,800 posts, read 4,844,519 times
Reputation: 6377
Default House Approves TSP Modernization Bill

House Approves TSP Modernization Bill - Pay & Benefits - GovExec.com

Without hi-jacking the thread but not wanting to start a new one on this topic that will only apply to FERS/CSRS employees I want to put this update for everyone. This is especially important to anyone approaching retirement or just leaving employment and looking at options for their TSP accounts. I will not make your decision for you but I do want you to really seriously think on your reasons for moving.

There are good and valid reasons to move your TSP and one is if you are leaving government employment to another employer and that employer has a 401k. Moving TSP money is a good idea if you leave that new company you can make after service withdrawals if you are older than 55 and it is coming from your last 401k employer.

I only have a suggestion for anyone that is contemplating moving to at least contemplate leaving some money ($250.00 is the minimum) to leave the account open. I suspect and expect that there will be other changes along the way as well as the nice changes already well on its way to be approved.

BTW I do not work for TSP or anyone now. You have only my word for it but trust me I don't.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:55 AM
 
6,875 posts, read 7,273,507 times
Reputation: 9785
I'm the OP, and I'll bite on your train of thought....

Soooo is the consensus that we do expect SOME changes?
If so can you all with some experience and expertise list in order of LIKELIHOOD the changes you think will ULTIMATELY be approved AND how long you think that might take. (they can propose anything, there's always negotiations with the Senate)

I'm looking at working for the feds for 8 years (at least the five to get benefits).

Do you see these changes THAT soon? Look at how long Congress has been proposing changes a whole lot of other stuff that doesn't get done for a decade -- or never.

Didn't they try to change MILITARY retirements and that got reversed.

THANKS!
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:32 AM
 
1,183 posts, read 760,467 times
Reputation: 3403
Quote:
Originally Posted by selhars View Post
I'm the OP, and I'll bite on your train of thought....

Soooo is the consensus that we do expect SOME changes?
If so can you all with some experience and expertise list in order of LIKELIHOOD the changes you think will ULTIMATELY be approved AND how long you think that might take. (they can propose anything, there's always negotiations with the Senate)

I'm looking at working for the feds for 8 years (at least the five to get benefits).

Do you see these changes THAT soon? Look at how long Congress has been proposing changes a whole lot of other stuff that doesn't get done for a decade -- or never.

Didn't they try to change MILITARY retirements and that got reversed.

THANKS!
look at the changes to FERS over the years. it was a long time between FERS and FERS-RAE. it was a much shorter time between FERS-RAE and FERS-FRAE. ask yourself what else changed in that time frame? and how does that compare to what things look like now?

i'd like to see something like nightingale mentions in regards to FEHB but doubt they'd go with something so "complicated", it's going to be a simpler approach i think.
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Old 10-19-2017, 07:30 PM
 
1,183 posts, read 760,467 times
Reputation: 3403
selhars, in case you're still around and thinking about federal employment.

Report: White House Officials Backed 2019 Pay Freeze, $300 Billion in Cuts to Employee Compensation - Pay & Benefits - GovExec.com
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Old 10-19-2017, 09:41 PM
 
6,875 posts, read 7,273,507 times
Reputation: 9785
Thanks...ultimately, though ....it is what it is....
I have an upcoming EOD date of 12/10/2017.

At that time I'll be leaving a job I JUST STARTED this past Saturday.
I enjoy the job, but the fed job pays more, and gives me more benefits.

Alack and alas, If I'm affecting by any changes, what will be, will be.
I can only pray the most onerous changes do NOT pass.

I also saw this:
"President Donald Trump is exercising his authority to give federal civilian employees and uniformed service members a pay raise effective Jan. 1, 2018."

Last edited by selhars; 10-19-2017 at 09:57 PM..
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Old 10-20-2017, 09:13 AM
 
Location: minnesota
6,338 posts, read 2,118,795 times
Reputation: 2168
Is it true that part of this bill will eliminated COLAs for pensions even for people who are already in the system or retired?
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Location: Happy Place
3,686 posts, read 1,866,292 times
Reputation: 11294
Quote:
Originally Posted by L8Gr8Apost8 View Post
Is it true that part of this bill will eliminated COLAs for pensions even for people who are already in the system or retired?
That is my understanding of the house-passed bill. Eliminate COLAs and the FERS supplement, high five instead of high 3.
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:25 AM
 
Location: minnesota
6,338 posts, read 2,118,795 times
Reputation: 2168
Quote:
Originally Posted by mschrief View Post
That is my understanding of the house-passed bill. Eliminate COLAs and the FERS supplement, high five instead of high 3.
That's the one I'm most concerned about and anyone I try and talk to doesn't seem concerned at all about that one. They are basing that on the low inflation and CPI adjustments of recent years. I've heard "who cares there hasn't been a COLA in 2 years anyway." I see inflation as cyclical and am very concerned if that gets eliminated and I happen to be retired in years that inflation is high. Am I the one overstating the risk or are they failing to see it? At least I have some time to plan for that if it does go into effect and adjust accordingly. I can't imagine what I would do if I was already retired.
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Old 10-20-2017, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,656 posts, read 1,522,222 times
Reputation: 3627
Quote:
Originally Posted by L8Gr8Apost8 View Post
That's the one I'm most concerned about and anyone I try and talk to doesn't seem concerned at all about that one. They are basing that on the low inflation and CPI adjustments of recent years. I've heard "who cares there hasn't been a COLA in 2 years anyway." I see inflation as cyclical and am very concerned if that gets eliminated and I happen to be retired in years that inflation is high. Am I the one overstating the risk or are they failing to see it? At least I have some time to plan for that if it does go into effect and adjust accordingly. I can't imagine what I would do if I was already retired.
This Government Executive article provides some information on the differences between the House and the Senate proposal and the path forward. There is also a good article posted on FEDWeek:

Senate Approves Budget Plan, Setting Up Fight Over Fed Benefit Cuts - Pay & Benefits - GovExec.com

"The Senate voted 51-49 Thursday night to approve its fiscal 2018 budget resolution, following a lengthy session of debate on proposed amendments. The legislation (H. Con. Res. 71) as approved by the Senate Budget Committee, sets the stage for Republican efforts to reform the federal tax code, and it orders the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to slash $1 billion in spending over the next decade. But it does not recommend any cuts to federal employee benefits as part of those savings.

...

Representatives from both chambers must now meet to iron out the differences between their resolutions before a unified version goes back to each body for a final vote. The instructions to the oversight committee on cuts will be among the differences to be resolved."

Someone else may have more insights on the budget process. It is too complicated for me. I had emailed my Senators previously on this issue focusing on the COLA and FEHB cuts (which I consider to be the most unfair of the proposed cuts) and plan to do the same now for my state's three representatives. However only one is a Republican and I am not in his district. But at least I am taking some action which makes me feel better. It is easy to email them - each Congressman has a website set up for this - just google how to email your Congressman.

Edited to better address quote:

Yes, we should be very concerned about the elimination of the FERS COLA especially as the current SS and CSRS COLAs don't seem to actually reflect true inflation for the retiree (e.g., underestimate inflation for medical, insurance, and property tax) and the FERS COLA is already less. As far as adjustments, anyone retiring should plan to pad their retirement income sufficiently to plan for the unknown. I recently retired from federal service after working two extra years to beef up my retirement income, mostly to have adequate funds for any unexpected expenses but also to increase my travel budget. I had concerns that I would regret working those extra years but am starting to feel much better about that decision given the current political environment.

Last edited by ABQ2015; 10-20-2017 at 01:02 PM..
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