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Spring/Summer 2022

PARRA President's Message


I have several updates, some of which will appeal to some of you and others which will appeal to others. So, let me get started.

PARRA held an in-person luncheon on April 28th, the first since before the beginning of the pandemic. Our Executive Committee felt that we should only hold an in-person meeting if it could be outdoors. UCOP cooperated by offering use of the 5th floor patio of the Franklin Street Building.  We had approximately 50 hardy souls in attendance: hardy because we were fortunate that many were willing and able to endure the pandemic restrictions imposed by UCOP, including having to have been tested within 24 hours of attending; because those driving had to figure out where to park; and last, because attendees had to suffer the heavy winds present during our luncheon. For those in attendance the catered food was good and our speaker, Chief Operating Officer Rachael Nava, was engaging.

COO Nava described how UCOP dealt with the pandemic, with facilities being closed to all but a few essential workers. She also shared the difficulty the entire University is having filling vacant positions, with over twice as many vacancies as is normal. UCOP employees are now able to return to work in the office, but only a few days per week, resulting in the facilities being occupied at approximately 30% capacity.  We were also informed that UCOP has leased floors in the new building adjacent to the Franklin Building that fronts Broadway. This has allowed consolidation of staff from several other buildings into either the newly leased space, or the Franklin Building.

The day before the PARRA luncheon, a joint meeting of the Retiree and Emerti Associations took place on Zoom, and the morning of the PARRA luncheon, a meeting of the Retiree Associations was held. University of California President Drake, Vice President Cheryl Lloyd and staff made presentations at the joint meeting. For those in the Anthem health plans, who may have experienced difficulty with the new pharmacy benefit manager, Navitus, the President indicated he was aware of the difficulties retirees (and active employees) were experiencing, and said the University was working to address them. For out-of-state retirees, who receive health insurance via a broker rather than directly from University insurance providers — an arrangement with which some are quite happy, while others are unhappy —  we learned that Vice President Lloyd will have her staff look into whether one of the University’s current plans, a Medicare Advantage Plan provided by United Health Care, could serve out-of-state retirees.

Last, for those interested in the budgetary health of the University, we were told that the Governor’s “May Revise,” a revision to his proposed budget for next fiscal year, would be good for the University. We have since learned that there is a new five year compact in the works that will assure the University of funding with 5% increases each year, plus funding for increased enrollment.

I continue to advocate for a continuation of health insurance alternatives for retirees, and for greater involvement of retirees in the planning of changes to health insurance plans, since major frequent changes to plans are difficult for retirees to accommodate and can lead to serious disruption of care, similar to that experienced with Navitus.

I’ll end by wishing you all good health as we deal with the vagaries of the pandemic.

 
— Jim Dolgonas          
Luncheon photos courtesy of Bill Newton

PARRA Business, and Save the Date
 

At the April 28 luncheon/meeting, members ratified the appointment of Connie Miller, as recommended by the Executive Committee, to serve as Secretary of the association beginning July 1, 2022.

The annual "Renegade Retirees" picnic will be held at Tilden Park on Tuesday, July 12. The picnic is organized by the UC Berkeley Retirement Association. Members of all local retiree associations (LBNL, Berkeley Emerti, Berkeley staff and PARRA) participated last year and a large crowd is expected again this year. Next month, look for a PARRA Events email with advance registration instructions. The information will also be published in the June issue of the UC Berkeley Retirement Center's Center Express.
PARRA Donors
October 2021 - May 2022

Judith Ackerhalt, Sandra Ahn, Don Alter, William Baker, Maria Bertero-Barcelo, Eric Behrens, Christina Campbell, Rosemary Chengson, Carol Copperud, Judith Coy, Jim Dolgonas, Tracy Fitzgerald, Leslie C. Gallaugher, Linda Glasscock, Barbara Gerber, Jon Good, Larry Hershman, Jim Hirahara, Karla Holmberg, Cornelius Hopper, Nancy Huey, Katharine Jeffery,  Gordon Jeong, Nancy Kwong, Mark Langberg, Gary Lawrence, Eleanore Lee, Mona Lee, Rulon Linford, Mary MacDonald, Timothy Madsen, Steven Mathews, Gary Matteson, Carol McClain, Karen Merritt, Connie Miller, Carolyn Mini, Gary Morrison, Nancy Murakami, Frank Navarro, William Newton, Debora Obley, Myron Okada, David Olson, Michael O’Neill, Catheine Parrott-Hawkins, Pamela Peterson, John Plotts, Ina Potter, Kathleen Quenneville, Carla Raffetto, Sandy Ritzo, LaVonne Rochon, Roger Samuelsen, Randolph R. Scott, Joan Starr, Mary Stephens, Mila Tolbert, Karen Tomajan, Leigh Trivette and Rick Malaspina, Lucia Tsang, Barbara VandenBorre, Karen Vecchi, Alan Wagner, Tim Wan, Kathleen Wesner, Rose White, Frank Wong, Larry Wong, Patricia Yamashita, Barbara Yoder.

PARRA thanks you for your generosity!
Calla Lilies

We Remember

Joe Azzolino
Diana Cifelli
Susan Mathews
Chet McCorkle
Verna Osborne
Martha Pruitt-Christ
Stephanie Travis
 
PARRA Financial Report
1/1/21-12/31/21

 
BANK BALANCE 1/1/21   $6,717.04
     
DEPOSITS      
Donations -Check                $810.00  
Donations - TicketSpice $1,982.71  
     
NET INCOME $2,792.71  
     
EXPENDITURES    
2021 CUCRA Dues $211.00  
Luncheon* $1,250.00  
Web Hosting $84.00  
Postage $102.28  
     
TOTAL EXPENSE $1,653.28  
     
ENDING BALANCE as of 12/31/21   $7,856.47

* deposit
   

submitted by Bill Newton, Treasurer
   
     
Voluntary Dues
PARRA dues are voluntary. The suggested annual amount from our members is $10. For those of you who give, thank you! Your contributions support email communications and PARRA participation on the Council of UC Retiree Associations (CUCRA).

Contributions may be made online below or by a check made out to "PARRA" and mailed to our treasurer:
PARRA c/o Bill Newton
1807 Grant St.
Berkeley, CA 94703
Contribute to PARRA

After a nearly two-year hiatus, the UC Retirees Travel program has begun to explore the world again with UC retirees, their friends, and their families. So far in 2022 we have traveled to Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, and France. Many more spectacular adventures await. As of press time, space is available on the following trips, many of which feature optional pre- or post-trip extensions:

2022 Trips
Islands of New England, Aug 26-Sept 2
Canadian Rockies by Train, Sept 5-13
Cuba Discovery 2022, October 17-22
Christmas on the Danube, Dec 2-10
Chile/Argentina, #2 December 2-20 (one single space available)

2023 Trips
Treasures of Egypt, January 12-23, 2023
Spectacular South Africa, February 2-15
Japan's Cultural Treasures, #1 March 27-April 10 (one single space available); #2 March 8-22
Shades of Ireland, April 24-May 6
Rhine/Moselle River Cruise, August 27-Sept 4
Untamed Iceland, September 20-October 2
Cuba Discovery 2023, October 23-29

UC Retirees Travel is facilitated entirely by volunteers. Sue Barnes, a UCLA retiree, coordinates the program and escorts trips. Dolores Dyer, a retiree from UCLA, is assistant coordinator and trip escort. Three other retirees volunteer as trip escorts: Sandra Norberg, a UCSF retiree, Vickie Leow, also a UCSF retiree, and Frank Trueba, a UCSC retiree.

By participating in UC Retirees Travel, you help to support to the Council of UC Retirees Associations (CUCRA). CUCRA is comprised of volunteer representatives from each of the UC retiree associations, who meet with UC Office of the President representatives twice per year and advocate for retiree benefits and services.

Visit the UC Retirees Travel website at http://cucra.ucsd.edu/travel/ to see trip details, subscribe to the Travel Talk e-newsletter, or register for webinars to preview our upcoming trips. Questions? Email UCRetireesTravel@gmail.com.
— Sue Barnes         
PARRA Executive Committee - Officers: Jim Dolgonas, President; Bill Newton, Vice President & Treasurer; Erica Nietfeld, Secretary. At-large members: Eric Behrens, Carla Ferri-Blackmon, Linda Glasscock, Kristine Hafner, Margaret Heisel, Mary E. MacDonald, Cheryl Marshall, Connie Miller, Debora Obley, Myron Okada, Randolph R. Scott, Connie Williams.

 
Copyright © 2022 UC President's & Regents' Retiree Association, All rights reserved.


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