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December 2020

SPOKANE CHAPTER 32 NEWSLETTER

Published Monthly except July and August

www.narfespokane.org


20 - 10 Advocates for Current and Former Federal Employees December 2020


DECEMBER CHAPTER MEETING MONDAY Dec. 14, 2020 - 11:30AM ZOOM MEETING: To Join the Zoom Meeting: Call 253-215-8782 Enter Meeting ID: 847 6320 6413 Passcode: 044180 Or you can CLICK on THIS LINK. PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE Scott Robinson

The year 2020 is finally coming to an end. The coronavirus was certainly one of those “once-in-a lifetime events” for our members. Our Chapter held three monthly meetings at Darcy’s before we went into shutdown mode. We consequently missed our Garage Sale and Sprague Rest Stop fundraisers, but revived monthly meetings on Zoom in September, October, and November. Fourteen people joined us in October and 21 participated in November. The Chapter elected one Director for a one-year vacancy and three Directors for the next three years. Roger Bosky, Bill Beatty, Margie Dennis, and Wanda Faulkner will be sworn in during our December meeting. Thank you four for helping to lead NARFE Chapter 32 – Spokane. Please mark your calendars and join us on December 14th. You still can listen to our conversation even if you do not have a web camera.


The federal government's annual Open Season continues through December 14, 2020. This is the only period when federal employees and retirees can make changes to their health, dental, vision, and flexible spending account benefits without a qualifying life event. NARFE’s webpage has collected the information and resources you need to make informed decisions about your federal health, dental, vision, and flexible spending account benefits. I encourage you to do your homework before you make decisions.

I’m continuing to recruit the Membership Chairperson, who could be you. Please call me at 208-661-7695 or email me at scottsoriole@q.com if you are interested in becoming a more active member. Safely enjoy your Christmas holiday.



DATES FOR YOUR CALENDAR

December 14, 2020 11:30 AM Due to the present health situation all Meetings are virtual until further notice.


To Join the Zoom Meeting, you can either:

Call 253-215-8782 and enter the Meeting ID 847 6320 641 Passcode: 044180

Or you can CLICK on THIS LINK.



LEGISLATION Roger Bosky

This is a time, for us to be thankful for our blessings. Maybe, the COLA and pay increases were not as big as we wished, but we did get them.


Congress is now in recess. When it comes back, it must deal with spending limits. Congress can’t agree on regular budgets, so on December 11th the funds run out, and hopefully we get a continuing resolution. There is much confusion about what kind of pay raise to give Federal employees. The President thought 1% would be enough; the Senate said 0%; and the House would offer 3.5%. Who knows?


Last month, we discussed the administration’s attempt to further politicize agencies by creating a “schedule F” to identify employees who are involved in “policy”. This directive would dramatically increase the number of political appointees. The Senate, unions and others have proposed legislation to rescind this directive.


As more and more workers are moving away from remote teleworking, the effects of virus contagion have spread. There are now some 3500 workers receiving benefits for contracting the virus at work. Injury compensation and death benefits are being made under the Federal Employees Compensation Act. Federal workers are having to take these risks with little or no centralized Federal leadership.


Congress returned on November 30, and there are a whole host of bills, like compensation, pay, and the Windfall Elimination Provision, that must be dealt with or not. We hope that the Federal community prospers better under a new administration.



NARFE-PAC MaryAnn Bosky

You can contribute to NARFE-PAC contribution form in the NARFE magazine or by sending a check, made out to NARFE-PAC to our post office box. The address is: NARFE, PO Box 4592, Spokane, WA 99220.


The more members we have the more power to protect our benefits/retirement. We are speaking to all members not just those retired.



PROGRAM Chris Smith and Joanne Welch