1686 GAZETTE Newsletter of Chapter 1686 Sunnyslope Vol. XXXV NOVEMBER - DECEMBER 2014 No. 2 Meetings of Chapter 1686 NARFE held at Cross Roads United Methodist Church, 7901 N. Central Ave., Phoenix. (S.E. corner of Central & Northern Aves. Enter from Northern Ave.) NEXT MEETING: Friday, Nov. 21, 2014 - Tom Burch of AARP will speak. Topic: вЂњNegotiating Traffic on the Roads Today.вЂќ HOLIDAY PARTY: Friday, Dec. 19, 2014 Chapter 1686 Annual Holiday Party! IronWorks Restaurant, 17233 N. 45th Ave., Glendale, AZ Friday, Dec. 19, 2014; 11:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. Installation of Chapter 2015 Officers Silent Auction Door Prizes 50/50 LosersвЂ™ Drawing (Reservation Form and Directions to Restaurant on Page 5.) PRESIDENTвЂ™S MESSAGE (Virginia Ginter , [email protected]): We are pleased to have Tom Burch from AARP speak this month. He has been a volunteer for more than 11 years. He retired after 26 years of service in the army with the rank of Colonel. He also has a Masters Degree in Criminology and a Bachelor of Science in Law Enforcement. This is the month of Thanksgiving and honoring our Veterans. Therefore, let us remember to give thanks to the past NARFE members who have helped us to protect our benefits. Many or our members are Veterans; our thanks and appreciation for their service. Since October was our Anniversary month, I will share a bit of the history of our chapter (courtesy of Lynn Engles). We were founded in 1979 with 43 members but officially our chapter was not approved at National until July 1980. Tressie Annand is still an active member of our chapter and was present at the October meeting. In 1985, with only 60 members, Chapter 1686 (Cont. on Page 4.) THINGS TO DO FOR THE NOVEMBER MEETING: в™¦ Come to hear Tom Burch of AARP speak. в™¦ Honor Chapter members who are Veterans. в™¦ Vote for 2015 Chapter officers. в™¦ Make your reservations for Chapter Holiday Party. в™¦ Bring an unwrapped, new or like-new toy for Desert Mission. в™¦ If you have a nice item you would like to donate for the Silent Auction or for a Door Prize, bring it to the November meeting. ~ ~ God Bless America! Page 1 of 8, FIRST VICE PRESIDENT AND PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICERвЂ™S REPORT (Carol Culbertson, [email protected]): Two Thoughts about Veterans as we commemorate November 11, 2014 (Veterans Day): While we can never truly repay the debt we owe our heroes, the least we should do for our brave veterans is to ensure that the government takes a proactive approach to delivering the services and benefits they have earned, so they can access the care they need and so richly deserve. - - Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) While we can't begin to repay the debt we owe our veterans for their brave service, we can certainly take steps to ease the physical, psychological and п¬Ѓnancial hardships they may be experiencing. - - Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) ~ ~ LEGISLATIVE REPORT (Lois Gossett): The Federal Salary Council announced that figure based on data gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which under federal pay law follows a methodology that has yielded a large вЂњpay gapвЂќ figure in favor of the private sector for two decades. The indicated gap was nearly identical to the 35.4 percent reported last year. By law, federal raises are supposed to consist of an across the board component linked to an indicator of private sector wage growth, the Employment Cost Index, or ECI, plus a locality component varying according to the gaps determined for each locality. (Guess again. No law enforcement for us.) So, the 1% pay raise appears to be all the Federal Employees will get. The Republican victory in the Senate changes the political landscape more for the federal workforce than most Americans. The terrain for federal employees could prove rocky, not that it had been so smooth before. With a GOP-controlled Senate, federal employees should expect a Congress much more willing to pick their pocketbooks by requiring them to contribute more toward their retirement among other things. With Republicans in power, all of the chamberвЂ™s committees will flip to Republican leadership. Bills that were stopped at the Senate could pass. The name of the game for us is vigilance. ~ ~ Page 2 of 8. SERVICE OFFICERвЂ™S REPORT (Richard Yee, [email protected]): Many thanks to all you members who contributed money for the AlzheimerвЂ™s Walk! Our Chapter 1686 collected and sent in a total of $85 to the Alzheimer Association. This annual walk takes place on November 8th at Bolin Plaza. Your generous support is greatly appreciated. If you are living alone and have no close relatives or contacts in the area it is a good idea to consider Medic Alert. Perhaps your doctor, nurse or pharmacist has advised you to obtain and always wear a medical ID. Keep in mind that in an emergency, when you might not be able to speak for yourself, a medical ID bracelet or necklace speaks for you. Symptoms of common ailments can easily be diagnosed. Prompt diagnosis is critical to effective treatment. A brief description of vital medical facts engraved on your medical ID will ensure appropriate and timely medical care. According to a published study, half of all medical errors occur because of mistakes made upon admission or discharge from the hospital. Wearing a medical ID protects against potentially harmful medical errors. More than 95 percent of the emergency responders look for a medical ID. Here is a partial list of ailments for persons who should wear a medical ID bracelet or necklace: Diabetes, heart disease, drug allergies, food allergies, insect allergies, AlzheimerвЂ™s/Dementia Memory impairment. I understand that the month of November is American Diabetes Month. ~ ~ MEMBERSHIP REPORT (Clarice Pharo, [email protected]): The monthвЂ™s Activity Report has not been received yet. You still have until December 31st to sign up a new member and receive $20.00. This Membership Drive has been explained at the meetings and in the newsletters for several months. If you have any questions or need more recruiting material, please contact me at the meeting, call or E-mail (602-9434753; [email protected]). Members have been manning the NARFE tables at the Health Fairs held at the various government agencies. They pass out information and explain what our organization is doing for federal employees and retirees. Hopefully, this will result in some new members for our chapter. ~ ~ IMPORTANCE IF NARFE-PAC, Lois Gossett: I have reprinted Vern PallвЂ™s column from the AZ Federation Newsletter on NARFE-PAC and what it does for us. вЂњ PRIORITIES? You can imagine my surprise when our chapter president was called forward at a recent Federation meeting and presented with an award for the chapter exceeding $2000 in donations to AlzheimerвЂ™s. Wow, what a surprise! What made it a surprise was the fact that as the chapterвЂ™s NARFE-PAC chair I have barely collected $500 to support the program that supports our reason for being, our legislative program. Yes, our NARFE-PAC supports our NARFE Legislative program. NARFE-PAC opens the doors for our legislative team so that they can promote our legislative goals. The NARFE-PAC is all about getting recognition; recognition of who we are and what we do. Nothing about AlzheimerвЂ™s does anything to support our core program, legislation. Yet we see a whole page in the September issue devoted to hyping AlzheimerвЂ™s. Looks to me like we have our priorities mixed up. What message does this send to our members? LetвЂ™s not forget that AlzheimerвЂ™s is its own organization, a multi-million dollar one at that. But here we go giving them free advertisements in our magazine to the exclusion of hyping our own programs. If you want to donate to AlzheimerвЂ™s, you do not have to belong to NARFE. You can go to the AlzheimerвЂ™s web page and donate all you want, donate all you have. A lot of NARFE members are wondering why all the hype is going to AlzheimerвЂ™s. ItвЂ™s very simple; weвЂ™ve made a contest out of it. Why else would our chapter have received an award? The AlzheimerвЂ™s article in the September issue hypes the fact that AlzheimerвЂ™s is nearing an $11 million goal. Wow again! With two national officers in the audience that day, I turned to them and asked, вЂњWhat is our NARFE-PAC donation goal for this year?вЂќ No answer. Why? Because there isnвЂ™t one. I think we have our priorities mixed up. ~ ~ 1686 GAZETTE is published eight issues a year by Chapter 1686, National Active and Retired Federal Employees (NARFE), 825 E. Cinnabar Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85020-1732. Members annual dues include subscription to this publication. Non-profit bulk mail rate permit postage paid at Glendale, AZ. ~ ~ AREA AGENCY вЂњLift the WeightвЂќ CAMPAIGN: At the October Chapter 1686 Executive Board meeting, the request from the Area Agency for donations to their campaign was discussed. This is a once-a-year request to aid the Agency in providing needed services to adults. age 60 and over, others with special needs and family caregivers. There are more than 900 individuals on the waiting list for home services . It was decided that the proceeds taken in from the Silent Auction at the Holiday party would be donated to the Agency for this cause. If you have an item to donate to the Silent Auction or find something in the auction that you would like to buy, you will be helping out the Area Agency with their campaign. Thank you. ~ ~ AARP DRIVER SAFETY PROGAM: Safe driving is a challenge for drivers of all ages. Although today's older Americans live a healthier lifestyle than generations before them, they are still more likely than younger drivers to experience vision, hearing, or other impairments that could create risks while on the road. Although older Americans are safe drivers and their crash rate continues to decrease, older people injure more easily than their younger counterparts and are more likely to die when severely injured in a crash The AARP Driver Safety Program has been in existence for 35 years and is the leading authority on best practices for healthy and safe drivers age 50 and older. As the flagship initiative of AARP Driver Safety, the AARP 'Smart Driver' Course is completed by approximately 500,000 participants per year, resulting in an estimated $128 million in savings through insurance discounts. The Smart Driver Course provides Best Practices when sharing the road with other vehicles, a discussion of how medications and aging effects one safe driving ability, safety features of today's vehicles and a discussion on when it is time to stop driving. The Smart Driver Course may be taken in a classroom setting or online. Further information on the Smart Driver Couse will be presented during Mr. BurchвЂ™s presentation. ~ ~ FEHBP Open Season: Nov. 10 through Dec. 8, 2014. Page 3 of 8. SUMMARY - MINUTES OF THE OCTOBER MEETING: President Virginia Ginter called the meeting to order at 11:25 a.m. She called for a moment of silence for all departed NARFE members, and then led us all in the Pledge of Allegiance.. For our mini health fair today, three health insurance representatives were present to discuss their health plans and answer questions. These agents were Mark Rosales of Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Brian Sperling of GEHA, and Janice Sheffield of Aetna. Janice traveled all the way from AetnaвЂ™s home base in San Diego, CA to be with us. Their talks were well received by the chapter members and guests. They were able to ask the representatives many questions during and after the presentations. Virginia gifted them with NARFE cups. Special refreshments were served before the business meeting that started at 1:00 p.m. Virginia acknowledged the presence of members of other chapters and guests. Virginia presented NARFE cups to Fred Garcia and Dan Kirwin. Fred had been with our chapter the longest (32 years) besides Tressie Annand. Dan was the newest member present, just joining this year. Tressie Annand has been with our chapter for 35 years and was presented with a flowering plant in honor of her being our only Charter Member. Lynn Engles was not present, so Virginia read LynnвЂ™s history of Chapter 1686. We were the first chapter to feature birthdays and hidden birthdays! Richard gave his treasurerвЂ™s report. Membership chair Clarice reported that there was one member reinstatement, one member transfer-out of our chapter into a California chapter, two members dropped for non-payment of dues, and several prospective members. Clarice reminded us that if anyone has a problem receiving our chapter newsletter, please let her know. Virginia said the nominees for next yearвЂ™s elected officers so far are comprised of the existing board. Legislative Officer Lois Gossett reported that among other things, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board issued a final rule to implement a bill President Obama signed into law in 2013 making TSP accounts subject to federal tax levies. This will correct a loophole that gave federal employees вЂ�special treatmentвЂ™ that private sector employees did not receive. The IRS can dip into civilian, military and beneficiary accounts. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated the law will result in an additional $24 million in revenue over a 10-year period. This rule would also allow the FRTIB to withdraw from a TSP enrolleeвЂ™s account if the enrollee is required by federal court to pay federal constitution. A freeze on the Page 4 of 8. enrolleeвЂ™s account can be enforced until the payment is made. Richard announced that the donations for the AlzheimerвЂ™s Association can be made today. A box was passed around for this purpose. Carol Culbertson announced that there will be a program on the sinking of the British Liner at MacayoвЂ™s Restaurant on October 28 at 11:30 a.m. Carol Ehle announced that free dental exams for people with no insurance will be given at Midwestern University Dental Institute. The phone number is (623) 806-7016. Attendance for today: 17 members; 5 guests. The meeting was adjourned at 1:47 p.m. Submitted by Roberta Yee, Secretary ~ ~ PRESIDENTвЂ™S MESSAGE (Cont. fr. Pg. 1): hosted the State Convention in Scottsdale. In a few years membership had increased to over 300 members. The chapter co-hosted the 2nd Regional Conference in 1994 and co-hosted another state convention in May 1996. One of our chapter projects was to collect money for the Veterans Cemetery (now the National Cemetery). In combination with other chapters $100 donations and $1400 from our chapter, trees were planted and a Memorial Bench was installed in the Conversation Circle of the cemetery. Meetings were held at the Sunnyslope Community Center until a few years ago when the cost of meetings there became prohibitive. That is why we continue to support Desert Mission. During the two years that there was a Newsletter Recognition Program, the chapter won first prize the first year and tied for second the next year. We were the first chapter to start putting birthdays in the newsletter and started the Hidden Birthdate, which was written up in Retirement Life Magazine. We continue to be an active chapter. We have been involved with National, Regional, Federation and Legislative conventions and sponsored workshops. Our chapter is active in the District 1 and 5 Task Force group. Recently, I had members fill out a form indication how long they had been with NARFE and was surprised to see 15 - 20 years as the norm. The officers and committee persons work together as a team and I am proud and humble to be the President of this chapter. Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving! ~ ~ Check out our AZ Federation Web page at: http://www.narfeaz.com BIRTHDAYS: Nov. 16 thru Jan. 15th: Linda Nixon Nov. 17 Genevieve Dixon Nov. 18 Glenn Dietel Nov. 18 Frank Hernandez Nov. 25 Ralph Queen Nov. 28 Fred Garcia Nov. 29 Emma Glaze Dec. 02 Gail Castle Dec. 04 Tressie Annand Dec. 07 Ruth Swanson Dec. 09 Edward Moed Clarice Pharo Shirlene Ladd Richard Pitter Carol Culbertson Jean Kalwiss Judith Houk Wanda Hauger Farell Kenimer Dec. 15 Dec. 17 Dec. 18 Dec. 22 Dec. 24 Dec. 27 Jan. 06 Jan. 11 Jan. 13 Best Wishes! SUNSHINE REPORT (Carol Ehle, [email protected]): Sympathy card was sent to the family of Doris Walton who passed away recently. (Note: Carol suggested she start sending birthday cards to members and was told it was a good idea.). ~ ~ REFRESHMENTS: Special refreshments were served at 12:30 p.m., courtesy of Dan Gilchrist, Dale Armstrong, Elaine Caves, Lynn Engles, and Fred Garcia. Thanks to Lois Gossett for picking up our anniversary cake. ~ ~ Doris T. Walton Doris Walton, 88, of Phoenix, passed away on September 17, 2014. She was born June 14, 1926 in Manou, LA. Doris moved to Arizona in 1965 from El Paso, TX. She is survived by her son William (Kathy) Walton; her daughters, Barbra ((Michael) Miner and Lee Ann (Kelly) Porter; seven grandchildren and ten greatgrandchildren. Services were held at Camino del Sol Funeral Chapel, Sun City West, AZ. Graveside committal at National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona. Chapter 1686 extends sympathy to her family and friends. ~~ EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING: There will be no board meeting in December. The date for the January board meeting will be announced later. Meetings are held at the Library Room at the Cross Roads Church at 1:00 p.m. ~ ~ TOYS FOR DESERT MISSION: Fred Garcia collected $16.00 for the 50/50. The chapter treasury received $8.00 and winners Carol Ehle and Richard Yee each won $4,00.. ~ ~ DonвЂ™t forget to bring an unwrapped, new or like new, toy to the November meeting. They will be delivered to the Mission following the meeting for distribution to the children at Christmas. Desert Mission is our chapterвЂ™s local charity. Your donation will be appreciated. ~ ~ BIRTHDAY DRAWINGS: ELECTION OF CHAPTER OFFICERS: 50/50 WINNERS: If you find the Hidden Birthdate in this newsletter and itвЂ™s yours, you will receive a NARFE cup. If your name is drawn from the list of birthdates in the newsletter, you will also receive a cup. You must be present in either case. The Hidden Birthday for October was September 15th, but wasnвЂ™t claimed. ~ ~ Another thing this country needs is a college that gives a degree in вЂњcommon senseвЂќ. ~ ~ Election of Chapter 1686 President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer will be held at the November Meeting. The Nominating Committee, consisting of Eleanor Dullas and Carol Ehle, have not been able to get a new slate of officers, but the present ones have agreed to serve another year. ThereвЂ™s still time to come forward. Nominations will be taken from the floor at the meeting. The Appointed Officers, consisting of Legislation, Membership, Service Officer, Public Relations, and Editor will be appointed by the President after election and will complete the Executive Board of Chapter 1686. ~ ~ . Page 5 of 8. DATES TO REMEMBER: Nov. 21, 2014 (Fri.) Dec. 19, 2014 (Fri.) Jan. 16, 2015 (Fri.) May 3 вЂ“5, 2015 - Chapter 1686 Monthly Mtg., Cross Roads Church, Northern & Central Aves., Phx. Chapter 1686 Annual Holiday Party, IronWorks Restaurant, Glendale, AZ Chapter 1686 Monthly Mtg., Cross Roads Church, Northern & Central Aves., Phx. Federation Convention, Windermere Hotel in Sierra Vista, AZ ~ ~ Wishing all NARFE Members a Blessed Holiday Season! CHAPTER AUDIT/BUDGET COMMITTEE: The Committee, consisting of Fred Garcia, Lois Gossett and Clarice Pharo was appointed at the November Executive Board meeting. The committee will meet in January to audit the chapter treasurerвЂ™s books. The chapter budget for 2015 will also be prepared to be printed in the February chapter newsletter. ~ ~ 3-06 We sincerely thank the First Credit Union for supporting our newsletter with their monthly advertisement. Stop in and visit them at 803 East Devonshire Ave., Phoenix, AZ ~ ~ THIS CREDIT UNION IS FEDERALLY INSURED BY THE NATIONAL CREDIT UNION ADMINISTRATION Page 6 of 8. CHAPTER 1686 HOLIDAY PARTY: The Chapter 1686 Annual Holiday Party will be held at the IronWorks Restaurant on December 19, 2014, starting at 11:30 a.m. The choice of entrГ©e is Turkey, Pork Chops or Meat Loaf, along with salad, potatoes, vegetable, coffee or tea, and rolls. Although the prices have risen some, the price will still be $15.00 per person and the chapter will pay the difference in price. The Chapter 1686 officers for 2015 will be installed at the party. There will be a Silent Auction, Door Prizes, 50/50 and the LosersвЂ™ Prize drawing. If you turned in all of your losing 50/50 tickets for the year, you will have another chance to win a prize. Plan to attend, send in your reservations early, and weвЂ™ll see you at the party. ~ ~ If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring? Pilgrims! ~ ~ SILENT AUCTION ITEMS FOR HOLIDAY PARTY: A Silent Auction will be held at the Holiday Party again this year. Due to limited space, we plan on having fewer items and items of better quality. If you have a nice item that you would like to donate for the auction, please bring it to the November meeting. The proceeds from this auction will be donated to the Area Agency вЂњLift the Weight CampaignвЂќ. (See page 3.) Jean Rigtrup and Roseanne Sonchik will be in charge of this event. ~ ~ DIRECTIONS - IRONWORKS RESTARANT: Go to West Bell Road and 45th Ave., turn north, go 1/4 mile to restaurant. It is on the Bellair Golf Course. ~ ~ Tel.: (602) 843-0909 CHAPTER 1686 ANNUAL HOLIDAY PARTY WHERE: IronWorks Restaurant, 17233 N. 45th Ave., Glendale., AZ WHEN: Friday, December 19th, 2014 - TIME: 11:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. COST: $15.00 per person - Includes Tax & Gratuity ENTRГ‰E: _____ Turkey; _____ Pork Chops; _____ Meat Loaf (Mark how many of each.) NAME: ____________________________ SPOUSE: __________________ Guests: _____________________________________________ Total Number Attending: ________ @ $15.00 = (List names) $ __________ enclosed. Installation of Chapter 2015 Officers Silent Auction Door Prizes 50/50 LosersвЂ™ Prize Make check payable to: Chapter 1686 NARFE, and give or mail to: Clarice Pharo, 825 E. Cinnabar Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85020-1732. Reservation Deadline: Dec. 9, 2014. Page 7 of 8. NARFE NatвЂ™l. Active & Retired Fed. Employees Assn. Chapter 1686 Sunnyslope Clarice M. Pharo, Editor 825 E. Cinnabar Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85020-1732 Time Value NOV. вЂ“ DEC. 2014 Address Service Requested Dated Material CHAPTER 1686 EXECUTIVE BOARD: President: 1st V. President: Secretary: Treasurer: Virginia Ginter 602 942-6093 Carol Culbertson 602 943-7834 Roberta Yee 623 337-4498 Richard Yee 623 337-4498 8844 W. Kings Ave. Peoria, AZ 85382-3511 Legislative: Lois Gossett Unlisted Membership: Clarice Pharo 602 943-4753 Service Officer: Richard Yee 623 337-4498 Public Relations: Carol Culbertson 602 943-7834 Editor: Clarice Pharo 602 943-4753 * * * * * * * * * * Dist. 1 V. Pres.: Ron Castaneda Fed. President: Etta Bryant Reg. VII VP Rodney Adelman 623 546-5596 520 578-0848 623 505-4719 COMMITTEE CHAIRMEN: Sunshine, Carol Ehle: 602 943-7308 Greeter, Lynn Engles: 602 265-3750 Membership Records, Fred Garcia: 623 878-7007 Attendance and 50/50 Fred Garcia: 623 878-7007 Refreshments, Clarice Pharo: 602 943-4753 Telephone Chairman, Virginia Ginter: 602 942-6093 NARFE-Pac Coordinator, Vacant Asst. to Editor, Jean Rigtrup: 602 841-1203 CHAPTER TELEPHONE CALLERS: Richard Yee Roberta Yee Joan Ashton Barbara Campbell Carol Ehle Need a Caller - Addie to Clark Carlos to Gilchrist Ginter to Kelber Kelleman to Miller Moed to Schultz Solnit to Zandee Contact Virginia (602 942-6093) if you would like to be a caller. Thank you. ~ ~ Page 8 of 8.