IN THIS ISSUE President’s Message Police Beat Fire News Retired Fireman’s Club News You Can Use Members News & Info Retired Fire & Police Association 4926 La Cuenta Dr. SAN DIEGO, CA 92124 PHONE MESSAGE (760) 753-7462 EDITOR Tony Hancock WEBSITE www.retiredfp.com WEBMASTER Jim Caster [email protected] PUBLISHER Lamp Post Inc. PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE Ron Moskowitz I would like to thank our outgoing board members for their dedication and service to our organization. Dave Hall, President 2013-2015. Dave has done an outstanding job these last two years, (big shoes to fill). He was directly involved in the success of continued city funding of the Supplemental COLA benefit for the pre-1982 retirees, which was set to run out in 2013. Dave was the chair of the Retiree Issues Task Force, which includes members from the RFPA, Retired Employees Association (REA) and SDCERS. He most recently has been working with the REA as co-chair of the Pension Reform Committee (more on that as it develops throughout the year0. Dave can now sit back and take a muchneeded rest as the Past President, a position still on the board to guide and advise the new President. Tony Hancock just completed two years as the Past President. He was very busy being the lead on the team to restore the Supplemental COLA. Without his dedication and countless hours of meetings and letter-writing, it was quite possible that we would not have achieved success. Tony has been elected to fill a vacancy as a Director that was created when JJ Hunter decided to retire, again, 1 from the board. This was his second time around. JJ filled many shoes: he stepped up and took the position of treasurer when Mike Robert was out of the country – which was frequently. He was also responsible for numerous donations to the many charities we sponsor. JJ has been a valued member of our board. I also would like to welcome our newest Director, Gary Hill, retired from the SDPD. Now, a little about your new President: SDFD 1965-2001; RFPA Director 2003-2005; VP 20052007; President 2007-2009; Past President 2009-2011; Director 2011-2013; and VP 2013 to the present. Enough about me. Be prepared. Hey, we are Firefighters and Police Officers, and we are always prepared. But have we prepared our spouse for our eventual “Last Call?” Let’s say your retirement allowance is $3000 a month. You die on the 10th of the month (1/3 of the month). Within 1-2 business days after SDCERS is notified, it will remove $2000 – or 2/3 – from the account where your retirement allowance is deposited. SDCERS will make every effort to contact your survivor prior to withdrawal, but be forewarned: the funds will be taken out, regardless of contact. It will take approximately 4-6 weeks for your beneficiary to receive the first monthly retirement allowance. The waiting time can be shortened by getting the Death Certificate to SDCERS in a timely manner. SDCERS has a Death Benefits booklet that is very helpful; you can have one mailed to you by calling 619-525-3600. Another great resource is Hand-in-Hand, and it will assist your survivor in dealing with SDCERS. For Fire/Lifeguard, contact Cherie Olaveson at 619-561-5985; for Police, contact Mike and Liz Miller at 858-672-2728. PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE (cont.) In May, you will be receiving the SDCERS Health Care booklet. If you aren’t making any changes, you don’t need to do anything. I strongly recommend that you keep this book handy throughout the year, as it has a lot of excellent information, especially for those of you that are – or will be – entitled to receive Medicare benefits, either your own or through your spouse. In closing, I would like to remind you of our quarterly luncheons in January, April, July, and October. The first three are free; the October luncheon is for members and their significant others, and there is a small charge. Our luncheons are a great opportunity to connect or reconnect with friends and former coworkers. We ordinarily have a featured speaker and a recap of what your directors have done and what we are currently involved in. Hope to see you all in April. POLICE BEAT Kathy Healey Kathy had some personal business to attend to, so her column will not be included in this issue. We look forward to the return of her column in the Summer 2015 newsletter. In the meantime, she has asked me to remind everyone to keep their contact information current with both SDCERS and the RFPA. It becomes quite difficult keeping our members informed of important issues if we don’t have your contact information (i.e. address, email and phone number). Kathy reports that the following retired police officers have answered their “last call” since publication of the last newsletter: Detective Sandra “Sandy” Kirkendall, Lt. Ray Sigwalt, Detective Ron Knuth, and Detective Frank Martinez. Please keep their families and loved ones in your thoughts. Kathy also mentions that, if you’ve never attended one of our annual Remembrance Day services, you will have an opportunity to do so on Sunday, March 22, at 1:30 PM. More information can be found elsewhere in this newsletter. We will be honoring 27 Police Officers and 13 Firefighters who passed in 2014. 2 THE RETIRED FIRE & POLICE ASSOCIATION & FOUNDATION OF SAN DIEGO, CA INC A California Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation: Tax ID 33-0847533 Your tax deductible contributions help us to continue the charitable work we do within our community. Almost all of the donations we make go to support Police, Fire and Lifeguard causes and to help our brothers and sisters in their time of need. For a list of “Frequently Asked Questions,” go to the website and click on the FOUNDATION tab. MEMBERSHIP NEWS & INFO Total Membership - 1,716 RFPA WEBSITE: www.retiredfp.com is continually updated and is much easier to navigate. We have recently added an area to post announcements, business ads and items for sale. Regularly check for new postings on the homepage calendar. ONLINE ROSTER: www.roster.retiredfp.com. You will be asked to enter a “new” User Name and Password the first time you access this site. Or, access the roster from the website. WEBMASTER: Jim Caster at [email protected] TO CHANGE YOUR ADDRESS OR PHONE NUMBER: Go to the RFPA Website (click: Contact Us) or contact Tom Rouse, Secretary, at [email protected] - or - 760-753-7462 TO PUBLISH INFORMATION IN THIS NEWSLETTER: Please contact Tony Hancock at [email protected] - or - 760-943-7351. RETIRED FIREMAN’S CLUB Due to other commitments, I have been unable to attend these functions on a regular basis. They still meet at 10 AM on the first and third Monday of each month, except on major holidays. When I showed up on February 16, I was surprised to see that Joe Pirronello was there. Jim Miller picked him up and brought him down. As you probably know, Joe is recovering from a stroke, and he is still using a walker. Larry Bauer is doing his best to keep this group going, and he has had to fight an uphill battle as the facility at NTC becomes more rundown. The “clubhouse” is the property of San Diego Fire-Rescue; it has, on occasion, loaned the facility to other groups, and it has fallen into disrepair. The Retired Fireman’s Club is the only group that gives this place a regular cleaning. And, when Rocky decides to cook lunch for just the guys and occasionally the spouses and significant others, more clean-up work is required to make it usable. They can always use help with this task. Speaking of Rocky, he and his little band of “celebrity chefs” prepared a post-Valentine’s Day meal on Saturday, February 28. Attendance was smaller than usual due to altered planning, but, as usual, those in attendance had a great time...especially the women, since Rocky provided Valentine candy. The North County breakfast group is still getting together at the Potato Shack in Encinitas. We Tony Hancock meet for breakfast at 9 AM on the first Wednesday of the month. The crowds seem to be getting larger, but a lot of that is due to the fact that the restaurant reduced its size by half a few months ago. There’s usually 15 - 30 in attendance, including groups from East County, and occasionally some OB guys show up. There are regular out-of-town visitors that join us when they’re here, and every once in awhile, someone who’s not retired will try to sneak in – but we aren’t that picky. If you’d like to be notified or reminded about this event, contact Bob Vignato. A little suggestion here: the next time you come up, order a large breakfast, because Bobby divides the total bill up equally. RETIRED FIRE AND POLICE ASSOCIATION CORDIALLY INVITES YOU TO ATTEND THE EIGHTEENTH ANNUAL REMEMBRANCE DAY SERVICE HONORING OUR RETIRED FIREFIGHTERS, POLICE OFFICERS AND LIFEGUARDS WHO ANSWERED THEIR LAST CALL IN 2014 Sunday, March 22, 2015 at 1:30 pm El Camino Memorial Park Firefighters & Police Officers’ Lawn 5600 Carroll Canyon Rd., Sorrento Valley 3 FIRE NEWS I’m thinking about renaming this article from Fire News to Drop Off. Fire News sounds so boring. Drop Off by Tom Rouse. Now that would ring a bell with fire retirees. Wait a minute. That gives me an idea. How does “The Bell Ringer” sound? That’s it. The Bell Ringer by Tom Rouse. Get all the latest info in “The Bell Ringer.” Let’s see how that flies next issue. Oh, no, not again. How about “Up The Fly” with Tom Rouse? Now wait a second. I know what you’re thinking. Get that out of your mind. Remember the old ladder commands? For you cops and widows, “up the fly” was the command to extend the fly of the ladder. Extend? I better stop before I get into more trouble than I’ve already gotten myself into. I will have to work on this some more. If you have any suggestions, let me know. I can’t believe I asked that. Let’s just get back to the news. Sometimes news travels slowly. That’s the case with Fire Captain Paul Ingledew. We were informed of his passing in January. Captain Ingledew answered his last alarm on October 19, 2014. Paul was a Lifeguard before joining the Fire Department in 1948. He retired in January of 1977 with almost 29 years of service. Services were held in Hawaii. Retired Firefighter Roger Stinson answered his last alarm on December 11, 2014. Roger was 70 years old. He joined the Fire Department in Tom Rouse August of 1968 and retired in January of 1987 with more than 18 years of service. Roger served his brother Firefighters by serving on the Executive Board of Local 145. Those were tough years when we were under the thumb of Pete Wilson. He was also a veteran who served his country in the Air Force. show up, some from as far away as Washington. A date that should be circled is Saturday, July 25. This will be a day that will be special for all who worked at old Station 6. I will give more information on this date in our next newsletter as the details are worked out, but I wanted to give you a heads up now. The last Firefighter to answer his last alarm at this writing was Captain Norman “Rick” Nelson. Rick passed away on December 4, 2014. He retired in April of 2011 with 27 years of service. My wife, Judy, and I go up to Lake Tahoe often. There are a number of retired San Diego Fire Department people who have vacation homes there or have moved to the area as their permanent residence. We always try to get together with some of them when we are there. We had a great visit with Gary and Bonnie Easton, who have recently moved back to Truckee Donner from San Marcos. We also had a chance to go down to Gardnerville and see Bill and Mary Ann Middleton’s new “Ranch.” I live at the beach, so anything larger than an eighth of an acre is a ranch. We got talking about things and how fortunate we were to have ended up on the Fire Department. Some people were raised in a “Fire” family and knew they wanted to become Firefighters as their dads had done. This was true for Bill, whose dad was an L.A. fireman. This could be said about my son, Tim, now on the San Diego Fire Department. It could not be said about me. At this time I must mention the passing of a part of our Fire Family. Kathy Lee, wife of Ronnie Lee, passed away suddenly on December 24. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the families that have lost loved ones. Now let’s move on to some dates that should be highlighted on your calendar. The first date is April 13, 2015. That’s the second Monday of the second quarter, which means it’s time for our General Membership Meeting and FREE lunch. That’s correct, free lunch. It is held at the Police Pistol Range at 11 AM. Every member should try to make these meetings. See some old friends, get some good information and, if you’re lucky, win some cash. The second date is May 13. That’s when “Vacation Draw” will be held at the Off Shore Bar and Grill in Bay Park. Last year, we had about 40 people 4 The last thing on my mind when I left college was to become a firefighter. I did a four-year hitch in FIRE NEWS (cont.) the U.S. Navy as an ADJ (jet engine mechanic) and wanted to pursue that line of work when I got out. In 1969, I went to Northrop Institute and got my Federal Airframe and Power Plant license and then started looking for a job. I wanted to leave the L.A. area, so I headed to San Diego, where I had spent some time in the service. No luck. I was about to head home when I got the idea to stop by the city personnel office to see if the city had any aircraft mechanic jobs. Los Angeles does, as it had a fleet of helicopters and fixedwing aircraft. After the lady behind the desk stopped laughing, she said they were giving a test for the Fire Department in four weeks. I figured if I didn’t have a job by then, I would take anything, so I signed up. The next week, I got a job in Burbank at Pacific Airmotive. When the date came up to take the San Diego test I was off, so I took the test just to see how I would do. Two weeks after taking the test, Pacific Airmotive went on strike, and I was out of work again. I found out that I had passed the Fire Department test, so I got my brother-in-law to school me on my oral interview (he was a Santa Monica Firefighter). When the list came out, I was number 4 and was hired on October 1, 1971. I never looked back. Do you have an interesting story on how you became a San Diego Firefighter? Let me know by email or letter. I would love to tell your story. HELPFUL INFORMATION QUESTIONS FOR ANY BOARD MEMBER: A list of all board members appears on the website. Under the ASSOCIATION tab, click Board of Directors to see their email address and phone number. EMAIL UPDATES: If you have email access and you aren’t receiving email notification of SDCERS/City issues, retirement and party announcements, death and funeral notices, etc., you can get on the email list by contacting: Ron Moskowitz for FD & Lifeguards at [email protected] or Kathy Healey for PD at [email protected] HAND-IN-HAND Family Support Services: A group of dedicated, compassionate volunteers that came together out of mutual respect and concern for Fire and Police families. Hand-in-Hand works directly with the spouses and families of retired Safety Officers after the loss of a loved one. We provide spouses and families in crisis with empathy, support and practical resources to ease the bereavement process and the transition to independence. Contact: Cherie Olaveson • [email protected] • 619-561-5985 CARE-COUNSEL is a health care assistance program providing health care education, information, advocacy, and coaching in an independent and confidential manner. Services are available to all retirees at no cost. They can be reached at 888-227-3334 or on the web at www.carecounsel.com. THE BADGE & THE BOTTLE: In need of help? The Public Safety Fellowship can help. San Diego County public safety agencies created a fellowship in the hope of assisting our professional community in the area of alcohol dependence. Our fellowship is free of charge and independent of any other agency. Hiding or ignoring the problem will not make it disappear. Our meetings are available to all sworn Fire, Police and Lifeguards - active, retired, or former. We meet on Tuesdays at 7:00 PM. For more information and confidential assistance, please contact Mike @ 858-672-2728. 5 NEWS YOU CAN USE Another year has passed and, at the quarterly luncheon held in January, a new RFPA Board of Directors was seated. I must say that the work we do to advocate for our members is sometimes very time consuming, especially where retiree benefits are concerned. That being said, our efforts, though often taken for granted, are very rewarding to us. That is why we do what we do. Lately, we have had one or two members attend our monthly board meetings at the Firefighters Credit Union and, in several cases, they have approached me and thanked us for the work we are doing. In other words, they were surprised by the work we accomplished. I would suggest that you consider attending one of these monthly meetings to see for yourself what we do. Immediately after each board meeting, we reconvene to discuss matters that are brought before the RFPA Foundation, our 501(c)3 charitable organization. Money that is donated here is used to support issues that the board deems appropriate and, at times, help the families of firefighters and police officers. The Foundation also supports Cherie Olaveson and the activities of Hand-in-Hand. Donations by our membership are our chief funding source. As mentioned before, the RFPA, represented by Dave Hall (Chair), Ron Moskowitz and me, participates in the Retiree Issues Task Force (RITF) by regularly meeting with Cynthia Queen and Mark Hovey from SDCERS. Many of the retiree issues we have been successful in resolving have been initiated at these meetings. One of our biggest concerns has always been healthcare for our retirees. Hopefully, before next year’s open enrollment, we will be able to meet with the city of San Diego “prior to” the negotiating process for healthcare. This process generally begins in January of each year. The city is the sole provider of the healthcare plans offered to active and retired city employees. SDCERS has no input in this process. It only manages the benefits for retirees. Mostly, it is the unions that negotiate for these benefits. Since the Medicare plans offered by the city only include Medicareeligible (over 65) participants, you can imagine that the unions don’t put much effort into negotiating for plans that serve that demographic (I doubt there are more than a handful of plus-65 active city employees). We will keep you informed as we work to resolve this. Another retiree healthcare issue we have been tracking (it was brought up during one of our RITF meetings a few years ago) is the manner in which retiree healthcare reimbursements are processed...namely, COBRA and Medicare benefits. We hope to report soon that the process for handling these reimbursements has been simplified for our retirees. Stay tuned. 6 Tony Hancock I recently heard of a benefit that may be available to Medicareeligible retirees who are enrolled in Health Net Seniority Plus health plan offered by the city. There is a program called Silver Sneakers that provides highly discounted or free gym memberships to participants throughout California. Some of the local gyms that honor the Silver Sneakers memberships include 24 Hr. Fitness, LA Fitness and Pure Fitness. Since I don’t have all the facts (I am a Kaiser Senior Advantage participant), I would encourage you to do your own research by contacting Silver Sneakers by phone at 866-584-7389 or on their website: www.silversneakers.com. Other Health Net Medicare plans may also be eligible for this benefit. There are some Kaiser Senior Advantage Medicare plans that participate in a similar program called Silver & Fit, but this is not covered under the Kaiser Medicare plan currently being offered by the City. It is our hope that, as the City begins negotiating with the various healthcare providers for next year, the city may allow a second Kaiser Medicare plan to be included for retirees. Kaiser Senior Advantage PLUS is currently only $20 more per month, and it would include access to the Silver & Fit program. We are hopeful that members of the RITF will be allowed to give input prior to the City’s negotiations with healthcare providers. WELCOME NEW MEMBERS Donald Swanson (PD) Charles Alvarez (FD) Wendy Reno (PD) Joseph Steffen (PD) Robert Bilz (FD) Michael Sylvester (PD) Clifford Joralmon (FD) Christopher Bach (PD) Karen Carnahan (FD) Melissa McVicar (PD) James Culligan (PD) Lloyd Sentinella (PD) Paul Libassi (PD) Kenneth Nelson (PD) Henry Delgadillo (FD) Timothy Wilson (FD) Bryan Young (PD) Robert Meisner (PD) John Stadler (PD) Mark Van Abel (PD) Gregory Jebb (PD) August Ghio (FD) Margaret Wiegand (PD) Brett Dudley (PD) Robin Rose (PD) Pete Cohen (PD) IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING BENEFICIARIES It is extremely important that you keep your beneficiary information current with SDCERS to avoid delays in receiving benefits intended for spouses and family members. Updated information (as of November 2013) regarding “Death Benefits for Survivors and Beneficiaries” is now available on the SDCERS website @ www.sdcers.org. RETIRED FIRE & POLICE ASSOCIATION OF SAN DIEGO GENERAL MEETING & LUNCHEON January 12, 2015 11:00 AM @ San Diego Police Pistol Range CALL TO ORDER: 11:08 AM ROLL CALL OF OFFICERS: Dave Hall, President Garry Collins, Director Ron Moskowitz, Vice President Mike May, Director Tom Rouse, Secretary Kathy Healey, Director Mike Robert, Treasurer Larry Moratto, Director (excused) J.J. Hunter, Director Bill Farrar, Director Tony Hancock, President Ex-Officio PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: OPENING PRAYER: Chuck Ellison Chuck Ellison OFFICERS REPORTS: President (HALL): Thanks was given to JJ Hunter for his service on the Board for the past year. Special thanks and recognition was given to Board member Mike Robert for his work and dedication in the Dellemann case. It was noted that one reason for the successful outcome was the detailed records that were kept by the Dellemann’s. There will be a health insurance seminar sometime in February or March. The annual election for Board of Directors was held, and Gary Hill was elected to a two-year term. The gavel was passed to Moskowitz as the new President, and Garry Collins moved to Vice President. Vice-President (MOSKOWITZ): A plaque was presented to Dave Hall for his outstanding term as President of the Association. Treasurer: No Report Secretary: No Report GUEST SPEAKER: Tom Simonds – A presentation was given on what PORAC is and what services are offered for its members. ANNOUNCEMENTS: None RAFFLE: There were 13 prizewinners 6 - Fire and 7 - Police NEXT MEETING: Monday, April 13, 2015, 11:00 AM at the Police Pistol Range ADJOURNMENT: 11:48 AM 7 PRSRT STD US POSTAGE PAID Winston Salem, NC PERMIT #319 ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED RETIRED FIRE AND POLICE ASSOCIATION QUARTERLY LUNCHEON FOR MEMBERS & GUESTS Monday, April 13 @ 11:00 am POLICE PISTOL RANGE Home Avenue & Hwy. 94 NO COST FOR THE MEAL & REFRESHMENTS Lunch: Mexican food provided by Guillermo’s Catering RSVP is mandatory - not later than April 8th to: Ron Moskowitz • [email protected] • (619-990-6596) Guest Speaker: TBA 50/50 Drawing Luncheon is for MEMBERS ONLY, please - no guests (unless the guest is eligible to join, and does so at the luncheon). *Food is ordered according to how many people RSVP...don’t miss out. If you RSVP and later change your mind, please contact Ron.
© Copyright 2020