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NEWS FROM NARFE

NARFE 2013-14 Photo Contest Calendar winners selected
NARFE
Congratulations to the NARFE members whose photos were selected to appear in the NARFE 2013-14 Photo Contest Calendar! The 16-month calendar will begin mailing to members in August. In addition, the artwork in this year's spring notecard collection features five of the photos submitted for the calendar competition. Winners are in the process of being notified. The list will be published on the Photo Contest Calendar page on the NARFE website in the near future.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this year's photo contest. To see guidelines for the next contest, click here.
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FEDERAL BENEFITS QUESTION OF THE WEEK


Long-term care
NARFE
Question: I'm writing to you on behalf of a friend whose father is age 92 and a retired federal employee. He and his wife survive only on his federal retirement and are currently residing in an assisted-living facility. The facility they are in is inadequate for his needs. Any assistance that you can provide with respect to obtaining Medicare benefits for long-term care would be greatly appreciated.
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FEDERAL UPDATE


OPM's latest bid to improve retirement processing
Federal Times
By 2016 or 2017, the Office of Personnel Management hopes to have a major IT upgrade in place to speed up the processing of federal retirees' pensions. But even when the new Case Management System, or CMS, is in place, the government will still be decades away from its ultimate goal: a completely automated system that calculates new pensions with minimal human involvement.
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Federal law prevails in employee life insurance dispute
The Washington Post
Beneficiary choices that federal employees make in their government-sponsored life insurance trump state laws that could cause the benefits to be paid out in a different way, the U.S. Supreme Court held recently. The court ruled unanimously, although with some differences in reasoning among the justices, that the federal law governing the Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance Program overrides a provision in Virginia state law.
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Self-plus-one health insurance and phased retirement
FederalNewsRadio.com
VideoBrief On a recent episode of "Your Turn", host Mike Causey interviewed Jessica Klement, legislative director of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association, and Stephen Losey, senior writer for the Federal Times. Listen to their discussion on the legislative waterfront, starting with the self-plus-one health plan option. Plus, the latest on phased retirement and the Chained CPI.
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Benefit rules loosened for federal employees in tornado area
The Washington Post
Federal employees affected by the Oklahoma tornado are eligible for special considerations in their health insurance and other benefit programs, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) said recently. In a message to agencies, OPM said it has contacted Federal Employees Health Benefits Program carriers "to ask them to demonstrate maximum flexibility" in providing benefits, such as relaxing requirements regarding how fast a plan must be notified of an emergency admission or treatment at an out-of-network hospital or other medical center.
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Storm prediction agency scraps furlough plans
CNN
The federal agency that issued tornado warnings this week has suspended plans for across-the-board employee furloughs that would kick in as the summer hurricane season begins. Ciaran Clayton, communications director for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said the agency is canceling plans to furlough its 12,000 employees for as many as 20 days between July and September, when the federal fiscal year ends.
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Treasury suspends investments into G Fund
Government Executive
The Treasury Department has suspended investments into the government securities G Fund, using the most stable of the federal employee pension funds to delay hitting the government's debt ceiling. Suspending investments into the Thrift Savings Plan's G Fund — which collects on interest-bearing Treasury bonds that make up the public debt — has become a common tactic in recent years, serving as a component of "extraordinary measures" the federal government takes to stave off default.
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FINANCES


When to start taking Social Security benefits
Fox Business
When it comes to maximizing Social Security benefits, it's all about timing. "If you look at a married couple, there are 81 different strategies on how to claim Social Security," says David Richmond, founder of Richmond Brothers. "A lot of times people don't know their options." Filing too early for Social Security can mean getting a smaller check and potentially leaving thousands of dollars on the table, while waiting until full retirement age can maximize monthly payments.
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HEALTH


Healthy lifestyle habits may improve your memory, too
USA Today
Do you remember what you had for breakfast? If you're a healthy eater, there's a greater chance that you'll recall. A healthy lifestyle is linked to better memory across all adult age groups, even if you're younger than 40, a new study finds. UCLA researchers and the Gallup organization worked on a poll of 18,552 U.S. adults 18 and older. Healthy eating, not smoking, and exercising regularly were linked to better self-perceived memory abilities.
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SECOND CAREERS


Pitfalls to avoid when planning your second career
Forbes
Harlan David Sanders was 65 when he hit it big with Kentucky Fried Chicken. Laura Ingalls Wilder was the same age when she wrote the Little House on the Prairie series. Grandma Moses, 11 years their senior, began painting at age 76. Successful second-act careers require more than the good fortune and acclaim shared by these three standouts. They demand a commitment to constant learning and careful attention to the demands of a new field. Those who thrive in a new endeavor — after retiring from a long career — tend to avoid the following three missteps.
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RETIREMENT TRENDS


Baby boomers still more likely to buy cars than millennials
NBC News
While automakers may be focusing on the next generation of potential buyers, they shouldn't forget about the middle-age motorists key to the industry's recovery, according to a new study. Millennials may someday be the dominant buying group, but for now, baby boomers are nearly 15 times more likely to buy a new car, truck or crossover, reports the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, or UMTRI.
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TRAVEL


Ten tips to avoid identity theft during summer travel
Better Business Bureau
Are you traveling this summer? While traveling can be a relaxing getaway, it can also be an identity-theft nightmare. According to Traveling Greener and Equifax, here are 10 tips to avoid identity theft while traveling.
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CONSUMER TIPS


Beware of scammers targeting bank accounts
WKYT-TV
Robert Saks is behind bars for orchestrating an international bank fraud scheme that stole $34 million dollars. At the heart of the scam, a lead list that included bank customer names and account information. "They were using the list to charge and withdraw amounts from the consumers' bank account without their knowledge," says U.S. Postal Inspector Daniel Forrester. Postal inspectors determined Saks and 15 others withdrew funds from over 100,000 accounts, mostly in small amounts to avoid suspicion.
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NARFE NewsWatch from the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association
Disclaimer: The articles that appear in NARFE NewsWatch are chosen from a variety of sources to reflect topics of interest to active and retired federal employees. With the exception of Federal Benefits Question of the Week and News From NARFE, an article's inclusion in NARFE NewsWatch does not imply that the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) endorses, supports or verifies its contents or expressed opinions. Factual errors are the responsibility of the listed publication.

Colby Horton, vice president of publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
Caleb Gremmer, content editor, 469.420.2648   Contribute news
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