From the Executive Editor

By Norman Levinrad • December 14, 2015 • 0 Comments

Wow, here we are again with year end just two weeks away and knee deep in new plan proposals and set ups! Like every other year, 2015 just blew by in a blur of work. I feel like my life has gone by like the calendar pages flashing past one by one in those old movies. 

I’m sure we are all looking forward to a short break after year end before it all hits the fan again on about January 7 with ASC 715 season. Do we ever have a slow time? I for one am glad the short-lived 2016 Form 5500 extension deadline to November 15 was repealed and it’s back to the October 15 we are all used to. At least we have November to recover a bit. 
Whenever I read a discussion about the suspension of benefit rules, my eyes roll back in my head and my brain shuts down. I don’t know why but I somehow have a mental block about this subject. So when I read a conversation about it on the ACOPA list serve I asked one of the contributors, Osmundo Bernabe, to write an article about these rules so that if nothing else, I could better understand them. It’s going to be a two-part article — Part 1 with the main issues is here, and Part 2 with the intricacies of how to deal with re-hires will follow next month. Thanks to Ossie for this article, and thanks to my Summit colleague Glenn Soderstrom for reviewing and editing the article. Ossie and Glenn will also be collaborating on Part 2.
Also in this edition, we have Part 2 of Jim Holland’s excellent summary of the final 430 regulations, here. I certainly appreciate Jim’s ongoing contributions to this newsletter! Having regular contributors sure makes my job easier.
Our ACOPA President, Karen Smith, has provided a detailed write up of the proposed changes to the Joint Discipline Council Agreement soon coming up for our vote. As Karen reminds us, transparency and membership engagement are at the core of ACOPA, and we are one of only two actuarial organizations that are required to put this issue to a membership vote. Karen’s explanation is here.
Judy Miller, our Executive Director, has provided an excellent write up of how we at ACOPA make our voice count in DC. I appreciate that Judy keeps us well informed as to the work being done there on our behalf.
Lastly, here’s a news article about the funding crisis in my home state’s public pension system. It’s not so much that this is news as it’s a situation duplicated in most other states, but what I found really interesting to read was the actuarial report presented to the Trustees. The report is here
I personally love the holiday season, mainly because the English Premier League teams play three games in 10 days and I can hunker down for non-stop soccer watching. And if there is any down time there is usually an NFL game to watch at that time. It’s heaven. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a Happy and Healthy New Year to you all!