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2015 Fall Conference at Chase on the Lake, Walker, MN

2015 Fall Conference
  By Bobbie Margo

The 2015 Education Minnesota Retired Fall Conference was held September 14-16 at "Chase on the

Lake" in Walker, MN.  The conference opened on Monday evening with a "Welcome" by V-P Julie

Jagusch (President Larry Koenck was absent due to illness). 

The 40+ attendees introduced

themselves and elaborated on personal activities

since retirement.  Author Bill Schrankler provided the

evening's entertainment with a power point

presentation detailing his most recent book "Shadows

of Time......Minnesota's Surviving (Train) Depots.”

Tuesday morning opened with the Legislative Update

by Jodee Buhr.  The final Omnibus Bill was all about

licensing and funding with policy changes in:

1) Licensure, 2) Testing, 3) Full Service Community

Schools.  The new session may not start until March

2016.  Topics will include: 1) Supplemental Budget Bill, 2) Testing, 3) Teacher Recruitment and

Retention.  YOU CAN make a difference!  Meet with legislators, attend lobby days, contact:  

Laurie Fiori Hacking then provided an update on the health of TRA and of our pensions.  The goal is to

get us on track for 100% funding in 30 years.  Options being considered are: 1) extend the

amortization period, 2) 1 year COLA freeze, 3) 1% employer contribution increase.  The morning

ended with a session on "Finances/Wills/Trusts" by Kent Schutte and Jamison Tessneer.

Afternoon sessions included "Emotional Wellness" and "Exercise and Active Aging." 

The day

concluded with dinner and entertainment provided by

the "Geritol Frolics"- a musical group from Brainerd.


The evening's events ended with a bonfire by the lake.

Wednesday's sessions included an "Insight Into Warren Buffet-Finding Missing Money" by Joe/John


(yes, brothers/twins) and a "State of the

Union" update by Education Minnesota Treasurer

Rodney Rowe. 

Currently there are several (18)

cases before the Federal Supreme Court dealing with

the collection of agency fee.  The earliest decision

will probably be spring 2016.  We have been given

the gift of time to prepare for a possible loss in

Education Minnesota Union membership. One needs only to

look at Wisconsin.  Before Scott Walker-110,000 members-currently 42,000 members.  The

implications are staggering.  We need to work in sync to promote "the value of belonging."  

The conference concluded with an ESI Benefits presentation by ChristineThornborrow and a drawing for door prizes.

A HUGE "thank-you" to the Education Minnesota Retired

Program Committee for planning this year's wonderful

conference; and a special "thank-you" to Myrna Doran, Lois

Wendt, Matt Blewett, Christine Thornborrow and Betty and

Boy Toy.  Thanks for the memories!  See you next year!


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