E-news Archive for 2014

Jo MadonnaThe ASURA E-news is published after each Board Meeting and sometimes extra issues are published. The listing of future events, the last section of most E-news issues, has been deleted. Note: the links are likely broken.

Editor is Jo Madonna

Date News
12 Dec 2014

December Board Activities

In light of last year’s survey which indicated advocacy for retirees was the most frequently stated reason for joining ASURA the Board discussed possible advocacy efforts. Of the fifteen advocacy areas suggested the top four were:

  • Advocate for better computer support from ASU (17 votes)
  • Inform ASURA members about ASU/ASURA efforts related to retirees (14 votes)
  • Monitor ASRS (13 votes)
  • Monitor State Legislature (10 votes)

The top two advocacy areas are new and will be discussed at the January Board Meeting. The last two areas are ones ASURA has done for years. A group headed by Hal White is actively ramping up the Legislature monitoring effort; Larry Carlson will head up the ASRS effort.

If you have ideas about advocacy efforts you think ASURA should pursue please reply to this e-mail with your ideas and they will be introduced to the Board at its next meeting.

Board Election

It is time to begin the process of selecting new ASURA Board members. If you would like to help shape the direction of the ASU Retirees Association and participate with colleagues who also have the interests of our membership in mind then now is the time to volunteer. Board members attend a monthly meeting September through May. For more information on the nomination process see Board Nominating Procedures. If you are interested in being on the Board, know of someone whom you think would make a good Board member, or would like more information please contact Barry McNeill.

18 Nov 2014

Season of Thanks and Giving

While we give thanks for all of the gifts in our lives we also remember those for whom the daily demands of living are more difficult.  Each year the ASURA Adopt-A-Family program works with both a local school district and ASU's Office of Off-campus Student Services to select hard working families in need of a little extra help several times throughout the year.  ASURA member Joan Leard manages this program for us.  Next week, after determining what this year's families need, she will deliver baskets full of items to help them during this season of thanks.  This is one of the ways that our association supports a tradition of giving to the community in which we live.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Open Enrollment Reminder

Just a quick reminder that the open enrollment for Medicare, ADOA, ASRS and many other health, dental and vision insurance plans will be ending soon.  If this impacts you, be sure to take note of the deadlines and take the action that is required (if any is needed by your plan and circumstances) so that you are all set for 2015.

27 Oct 2014 (Supplement)

Insurance Open Enrollment

Open enrollment for health insurance benefits begins on Monday October 27 and ends on Friday November 21 at 5:00 pm. All ASURA members who have ASRS or ADOA insurance coverage have been mailed an Open Enrollment Guide. If you did not receive a guide you should contact the ADOA office at 602-542-5008 or 1-800-304-3687 or the ASRS office at 602-240-2000.

What you have to do or not do during open enrollment depends on the particular benefit, i.e., health, dental, vision, and on whether the benefit is from ADOA or ASRS

  • If you have ADOA Health Insurance you must re-elect benefits, see ADOA Guide for instructions on how to re-elect.
  • If you have ADOA Vision Insurance you must re-elect benefits, see ADOA Guide for instructions on how to re-elect.
  • If you have ADOA Dental Insurance and are happy with the coverage no action is required.
  • If you have ASRS Health Insuranceand are happy with the coverage no action is required.
  • If you have ASRS Dental Insurance and are happy with the coverage no action is required.

Helpful Resources and Information

Our ASURA website includes some helpful information on health insurance and health issues.  Click on this link to the Health Issues page to access these resources.

13 Oct 2014 (Correction)

Health Insurance Open Enrollment - CORRECTED INFORMATION

ASURA members who are enrolled in insurance plans through the Arizona Department of Administration (ADOA) will be sent open enrollment information soon.  We have been advised that this year individuals with health and/or vision insurance through ADOA will need to complete enrollment forms in order to continue insurance for 2015. Watch the mail for the open enrollment guides. You may also find details about ADOA open enrollment at: http://benefitoptions.az.gov/liaison/Docs/2015%20Retiree%20Guide%20100614.pdf

ASURA members who are enrolled in insurance plans offered through the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) will also receive open enrollment information soon. Members with insurance through ASRS who do not want to make any changes will not need to re-enroll or submit any forms.  Watch the mail for the open enrollment guides. You may also find details about ASRS open enrollment at:  https://www.azasrs.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/2015_OE_GUIDE_0.pdf

The ADOA and the ASRS open enrollment guides and websites also include the locations, dates and times for the benefit fairs and information sessions.  

Elections

Don't forget to vote.  Either complete and mail your early ballot or go to the polls on November 4th.

 

Health Insurance Open Enrollment

ASURA members who are enrolled in health and/or vision insurance plans through either the Arizona Department of Administration (ADOA) or the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) will be sent open enrollment information soon.  We have been advised that this year individuals with insurance plans from either will need to complete and send in enrollment forms in order to continue insurance for 2015.  Watch the mail for the open enrollment packets and note the submission deadlines.

Elections

Don't forget to vote. Either complete and mail your early election ballots or go to the polls on November 4th.

12 Sept 2014

Retirees Day Retired

Because of decreasing attendance Retirees Day has been retired. In cooperation with the Emeritus College, ASURA members are now invited to attend various of the College's presentations: see Upcoming Events below.

ADOA Health Insurance Rates to Remain Fixed

Art Ashton reported to the ASURA Board that he has been told that ADOA will not be raising rates next year. This was especially good news given that ADOA had gone out for new bids. ASRS has yet to release  information about their upcoming plan. Don't forget to sign up for the ASURA seminar on Medicare and ADOA/ASRS Insurance Plans: see Upcoming Events below

17 March 2014

Several items have come up recently which I believe you should be aware of.

  • A number of our ASURA members received an annual renewal request from the ASU Foundation for ASURA dues or any of our other donation possibilities, e.g., scholarship, video history, adopt-a-family, or operations.  If you received such a request from the Foundation you should ignore it; ASURA will be starting its annual membership renewal in mid-May at which time you will be able to pay your dues and make any other donations you might want to make. We have contacted the Foundation and they should not be sending our these annual renewals in the future.
  • ADOA is currently surveying its insurance participants in preparation for going out for bids for next year's insurance options. If you use any of the ADOA insurance options -- health, prescription, dental, or vision -- and want to rate your experiences you can take the survey at http://www.benefitoptions.az.gov.  You will need to know your membership number which is on all of your insurance cards to take the survey.
  • Back in February we sent out a request to take a Member Survey which was described in the latest Prime Times. I would like to thank the hundred twenty of you who responded to the request but we would really like to have a larger set of data to better understand our members. So if you did not take the survey back in February it is not too late; just log onto the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MembertWeb and take about 20 minutes to compete the survey. We are especially interested in getting more data from those who retired after 2010 or before 2001.

Barry McNeill
ASURA President