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Cypen & Cypen
NEWSLETTER
for
OCTOBER 14, 2003

Stephen H. Cypen, Esq., Editor

Never Forget - September 11, 2001

1. THANKS (AGAIN), DIVISION OF RETIREMENT:
On September 24-26, the Division of Retirement sponsored its 35th Annual Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Trustees Conference in Tampa. As usual, the group (Trish Shoemaker, Keith Brinkman, Melody Mitchell and Martha Moneyham) put on a terrific program. The speakers and their topics were beneficial to all trustees, and the materials presented provide easy reference and answers to many of your recurring questions. Those of you who did not attend this year’s conference should make plans to next year. You will enjoy the program and increase your knowledge ... thus making your job as trustee easier.

2. FLORIDA DIVISION OF RETIREMENT ANNOUNCES OCTOBER 2003 FIREFIGHTERS’ SUPPLEMENTAL DISTRIBUTION:
On October 3, 2003, the Florida Division of Retirement announced that it is distributing over $5.9 Million to 136 cities and fire control districts as the October 2003 Firefighters’ Supplemental Distribution under Chapter 175, Florida Statutes. With almost $452,000.00, Boca Raton leads the pack, followed closely by Miami with over $435,000.00. The firefighters of Florida and their families thank Trish, Keith, Melody and Martha for their continued diligence in running the Municipal Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Retirement Trust Funds Office.

3. EX-GITMO WORKERS WILL GET PENSIONS:
According to a lead article in the Daily Business Review, the U.S. Treasury has decided that, despite the embargo against Cuba, dozens of retired Cuban workers who were employed at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base will be able to collect at least part of their U.S. pensions. A Treasury spokesman said that payments under the October 1, 2003 decision will be retroactive to 1963, when the embargo began. Although the Treasury Department has authorized the U.S. Military to pay the pensions, payments to each household are limited under existing embargo rules to $300.00 every three months. Those eligible can be paid in one of two ways: the money can be deposited for them in an interest-bearing U.S. bank account or the money can be picked up at Guantanamo. It’s a start...we guess.

4. ICMA RETIREMENT CORPORATION CREATES RETIREMENT PLANNING GUIDE FOR PUBLIC SERVICE EMPLOYEES:
ICMA Retirement Corporation publishes a wide variety of materials to help employees make informed choices about retirement and financial planning. As part of its retirement planning series, ICMA-RC has published “Charting Your Course -- A Retirement Planning Guide for Public Service Employees.” From the table of contents: Introduction to Retirement Planning, Investing for Your Retirement, Understanding Investing, Determining Your Investment Portfolio, The Most Important Step (Resources) and Worksheets. The entire 56 page document can be viewed at http://www.icmarc.org, “Education, Planning & Advice” - Publications.

5. LIGHTHOUSE POINT, FLORIDA, GETS DB PLAN:
According to Sun-Sentinel.com, Lighthouse Point City Commissioners have replaced a defined contribution pension plan for police officers and firefighters with a more traditional, defined benefit plan. Under the old defined contribution plan, the City contributed 14%. The City will now contribute 14.25% of salary, but expects a big return in terms of attracting job candidates. The police and fire unions had asked the City for a plan that was more resilient to economic changes -- one that was more in line with those available to surrounding departments. With the defined benefit plan, there should be no doubt that the money will be there upon retirement.

Copyright, 1996-2004, all rights reserved.

Items in this Newsletter may be excerpts or summaries of original or secondary source material, and may have been reorganized for clarity and brevity. This Newsletter is general in nature and is not intended to provide specific legal or other advice.


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