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STATE THREATENS TO CUT RETIREES' BENEFITS

 STATE THREATENS TO CUT RETIREES' BENEFITS
 SACRAMENTO, Calif., Jan. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Gov. Wilson has


threatened to drop dependents of retired state workers from their dental plan unless agreement is reached on higher premium payments for coverage.
 The announcement came in a letter from David Tirapelle, head of the Department of Personnel Administration to the Public Employees Retirement system, which administers the health and dental plans.
 Delta Dental, the company that insures retirees, increased rates by about $184,000 per month on Jan. 1. But the PERS board decided not to pass that increase on to some 54,000 retirees as requested by the Governor.
 DPA Administrator Tirapelle promised to implement the alternative plan during February if PERS continues to resists the co-payment.
 "This is outright theft," said CSEA President Yolanda Solari. "Why does the administration continue to undermine active and retired state workers?"
 Solari added that "state retirees worked hard for the benefits they receive, and pulling coverage is a dangerous precedent that must be stopped. There are no guarantees that the Governor won't drop dependent coverage even if we agree to a higher premium."
 The average retiree receives a scant $700 pension payment a month. So that if the Governor's plan is implemented the additional $3.30 per month for a single retiree's dental coverage will hurt, according to Solari. The rate for a retiree with one dependent would be $5.97 monthly.
 Tirapelle asked PERS to reconsider and make the extra payments retroactive to December. If PERS doesn't go along with that the state will drop dependent coverage. Retirees could also be shifted to a cheaper plan.
 -0- 1/27/92
 /CONTACT: Pat McConahay of California State Employees Association, 916-326-4379/ CO: California State Employees Association ST: California IN: SU:


DG -- SF004 -- 3830 01/27/92 14:17 EST
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Date:Jan 27, 1992
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