I am very excited to report that 2018 is starting out as a pretty good year so far. The Retiree Medical Trust has been generating an incredible amount of interest. We have several associations lining up for presentations to either their Board of Directors or their general membership. A few associations have notified us that they are interested, but simply need to wait until they enter into contract negotiations a few months down the road.
The trustees signed off on a trust merger agreement at our February meeting, and there is a second trust merger in the wings. Both of these mergers should be completed this year.
This is truly exciting, as it has long been the goal of the trustees to grow the physical size of the Trust — I think it’s fair to say that we view bigger as being better. Growing allows us to do two things more efficiently: invest the participants’ money with greater
success and lower the per capita costs. That, in turn, makes it so we can offer a better benefit. The trustees have also authorized a new actuarial study that will determine where we need to set the multiplier. We are hopeful that the report will be a positive one.
One thing that I have been noticing is new young association leaders reaching out for more information about the Trust. I hope this trend continues because it means that there are folks out there taking care of their law enforcement brothers and sisters.
Late last year, the trustees authorized the creation of a new RMT website. 911MEDIA is currently working on the project, and you should recognize that company name; they produce the magazine you are currently holding in your hands as you read this article. Among their many talents is the successful creation of beautiful websites that are both informative and easy to navigate. 911MEDIA will be coordinating with our third-party administrator (BSI) as we try to weave together the old and the new. At some point in the near future, we envision participants being able to access their accounts online. While all of the account information is currently available through a phone call to the Trust headquarters, we recognize the need to bring current technology into our operation. Admittedly, it has taken longer than we had previously hoped. Please be patient until the website construction dust has settled.
Speaking of new, we would like to welcome Trustee Tim Davis. Davis is the president of the Sacramento Police Officers Association and a PORAC director-at-large representing the Valley Chapter. PORAC President Brian Marvel has appointed Davis to be the PORAC representative on the RMT Board of Trustees.
As of late, the stock market has shown itself to be somewhat volatile. I’m almost hesitant to report our current portfolio balance, though I am confident things will change. As of March 7, the three accounts we maintain totaled $36.55 million.
Speaking of change, one thing that probably won’t be changing is the need for some financial assistance with your medical bills once you retire. That is where the RMT can help you. But it does take some prior planning. Every year at conference, we have an information booth. Without fail, someone comes by, announces a pending retirement within a few months and then makes a statement similar to, “I’m going to need to get into the Trust so that I can get the benefits.”
Man, I wish it were that easy. The Trust is similar in many ways to your retirement plan; the longer you work, the greater your benefit. It simply takes some time for your benefit to build up.
That brings up what is probably one of the most common questions that arises when associations are looking at participating in the Trust. They wonder what will happen to their members who are very near retirement. Rest assured that we will take care of them and that nobody will lose money for being a short-timer.
As you know, both current and retired police officers manage this Trust. Our goal is to help provide you with a benefit when you finally retire. As we near our 10th year of existence, I can, with confidence, report that we are achieving our stated goal.
If your association would like to learn more about us or participate in the Trust, just shoot me an email at email@example.com or drop a dime on me at (530) 588-5117. We will definitely work with you to make things happen.