18 Jan 2016

TRTA “Good Voter Health” Series: Day 1

Are You Registered to Vote?

The Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) is focused on the election season, and our members should be too! This week, TRTA is providing a series of articles through the Inside Line about “Good Voter Health.”

What constitutes “Good Voter Health?” “Good Voter Health” is a term used to describe an active and informed member of the voting community.

While there are several key factors in exercising your voter muscle, the first is that you always VOTE!

Many races are decided in the primary elections, but few voters turn out for these spring races. TRTA is here to tell its members that voting in the primary election is more than just important, it is vital! 

Early voting for the primary elections begins on February 16, 2016 and continues through February 26, 2016. Primary election day is Tuesday, March 1. Election Day is a mere six weeks away!

Before you can vote in the primary elections, you must be registered to vote! Today, we encourage ALL TRTA MEMBERS to answer this question for themselves: Am I registered to vote?

To confirm your voter registration status, please visit this link provided by the Texas Secretary of State website. Please have your driver’s license handy when using this website. Use the ‘MVP’ area dropdown to enter your login information.

What if I need or want to change my name or address on my voter registration?

You can use the Secretary of State site to update your name or address on your voter registration record. TRTA has received phone calls from members expressing concern about having a different name on their driver’s licenses than what appears on their voter registration cards. If this issue concerns you, please address it NOW. Use this link to make name and address changes.

Please note that this service will only work if you reside in the same county as is indicated on your current voter registration card. If you have moved to a new county and need to register to vote, please click here.

I’m not registered! What do I do?

If you are not registered to vote, REGISTER TODAY! Please use the link to register as soon as possible. The deadline to register to vote in the upcoming primary election is February 1, 2016.

I have a question about my voter registration that hasn’t been answered by the Secretary of State website. Who can I contact?

If you are still experiencing difficulties with your voter registration, please contact your County Election Administrator. A complete list of county election administrators and their contact information can be found at this link.

Where do I vote?

If you are already registered to vote, it is time to begin researching voting locations. Remember, if you are voting early, you do not have to vote in your precinct.

Consider the time you have available between February 16 and February 26, and determine if you can vote on one of those days instead of primary election day, March 1.

Registered and eligible voters may vote at ANY early voting location located within the county of residence. Check with your Early Voting Clerk at the County Election Administrators office to determine locations within your county where early voting will take place.

Tomorrow, TRTA will focus on the importance of primary elections and researching candidates for political office during Day 2 of our “Good Voter Health” series!
Thank You

Thank you for being a member of TRTA! If you are not a member and are interested in joining, please contact our Membership Department at 1.800.880.1650.

Protecting your retirement benefits is one of TRTA’s top priorities, and your participation makes all the difference! Be sure to stay tuned to our other digital mediums to stay informed on all the latest news and updates. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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11 Jan 2016

TRTA Responds to Gubernatorial Appointment for State Pension Review Board

Click here to email Gov. Greg Abbott.

Click here to email your senator.

Near the end of 2015, the Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) released an Inside Line article discussing the recent appointment by Governor Greg Abbott of anti-public pension critic Josh McGee as Chairman of the State Pension Review Board.

As Vice-President of the Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF), McGee’s appointment was disappointing to many of our members. The LJAF has funded initiatives in several states across America to reform public pension funds, often to the detriment of current and/or future retirees’ benefits.

TRTA Executive Director Tim Lee commented to the Austin American-Statesman that the appointment was shocking. “He’s the worst possible choice to be chairman of Pension Review Board. We look at this and say how in the world did he get on the radar of Gov. Abbott? Our members tend to like the governor. That’s what’s so surprising. The guy, in my view, is nothing but an advocate for eliminating the plans that our public workers have,” Lee said.

TRTA has heard from several members about their disappointment and concern over McGee’s appointment. Many want to know what TRTA will do to address this issue.

TRTA has worked with Governor Abbott in the past and feels strongly that communicating with the Governor’s office is key. TRTA developed an official response and sent it to the Governor Abbott to inquire about his intentions for appointing McGee, and also met with several members of his staff to discuss the issue.

We appreciate members of the Governor’s staff taking the time to visit with us and hear more about the perspective of TRTA members and TRS annuitants. TRTA’s views on this issue are important to the Governor’s office, and our communication with them should continue to be positive in nature and have constructive value. The Governor and his staff have indicated they will be attentive to what our members have to say as we move ahead into 2016.

We understand your concern and ask that you please send an action alert email to the Governor’s office expressing your views in a helpful, productive way.

The appointment of McGee to the Pension Review Board will require Senate approval during the 85th Legislative Session, which begins in January 2017. TRTA is asking members to contact their Senators using this action alert to let them know about our concerns. TRTA will be monitoring the actions of the PRB closely to ensure that Chairman McGee does not use the board to continue his anti-defined benefit advocacy.

Please know that TRTA does not promote our members expressing contempt or anger, but rather encourages them to ask Governor Abbott and our State Senators to have open communication with our organization and to consider the views of all stakeholders who may impacted in some way by McGee’s appointment.

Thank You

Protecting your retirement benefits is one of TRTA’s top priorities, and your participation makes all the difference! Be sure to stay tuned to our other digital mediums to stay informed on all the latest news and updates. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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22 Dec 2015

Season’s Greetings From TRTA

Dear TRTA Members and Supporters,

This is the time of year to reflect and be appreciative of those who have been a special part of our lives!

The TRTA board of directors, staff and I are so very much thankful for the time you spend volunteering for the Texas Retired Teachers Association. Your work and endeavors have made this a successful organization that gives a voice to retired educators as well as active educators still working in the school systems.

In 2016, we wish each of you great health and a continued zest for the life you have been given!

Thank you for the opportunity you have given all of us to serve as your TRTA representatives. We are all deeply grateful to our members for everything that they do to support this great organization.

Season’s greetings and happy New Year,

Fran Plemmons

TRTA President

Tim Lee

TRTA Executive Director

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