Wednesday, June 9, 2021 @ 11:00 am
The June 2021 General Membership meeting of the Dallas Police Retired Officers Association took place at the Dallas Police Association, 1412 Griffin Street East, Dallas, TX 75215.
Present: President David Elliston, Vice President Sally Lannom, Secretary Kenneth Seguin, Director Boux Bland, Director Joe Richtsmeier, Director Dale Erves, Communications Director Carol Richtsmeier, DFR Advisor Larry Williams
Absent: Treasurer Crista Walker
- President Elliston called the meeting to order at 11:06 am and led the membership in the Pledge of Allegiance.
- Director Dale Erves delivered the invocation.
- The minutes from the May 2021 meeting had been previously posted on the DPROA website. A motion was made by member Robert Gutkowski to accept the minutes as posted; seconded by member Scotty Holt. Motion carried by acclamation with none opposed.
- President Elliston reported on the virtual meeting he and Vice President Lannom had with Chief Eddie Garcia. The Chief reported that he’d already been signing LEOSA letters for retirees and would also be agreeable to attending a DPROA meeting in July or August as his schedule allowed. Secretary Seguin will coordinate the Chief’s attendance with appropriate staff members. Chief Garcia also caused a make-up day for retiree pistol qualifications on July 21 at four different times that day.
- President Elliston reported that HB3375, jointly sponsored by Representative Yvonne Davis and Senator Nathan Johnson, had passed both houses and had gone to Governor Abbott’s office. He is expected to sign the bill or allow it to become law after ten business days without signing it. It is not expected that he would veto the bill. President Elliston said he’d written letters to Representative Davis and Senator Johnson, thanking them for their support on HB3375 to allow pension survivors to make requests for emergency disbursement from DROP annuitized accounts. He also used the opportunity to point out the falling percentage of the pension fund’s long-term stability. Mrs Richtsmeier will post the letters to the DPROA website for members to review.
- President Elliston advised that the board was considering allowing Police widows/widowers of deceased members to switch to an “Affiliate Membership” status with no voting rights. Choosing this option would reduce their dues by half ($135.00 annually). Any spouse wishing to continue as a voting member could do so by continuing to pay $270.00 annual dues. At the board’s request, he took a “straw vote” of the 19 members who were present. The members present unanimously voted to approve such a measure by amending the DPROA Constitution. The board will deliberate the matter further in its July E-Board meeting.
- President Elliston reported that HB4068 had passed in the legislature which would allow the 24 staff members of the DPFPS to enter the Texas Municipal Retirement System That bill was sponsored by Senator Royce West and Representative Tan Parker.
- President Elliston stated that he’d received information that one of the trustees of the DPFPS was going to resign on June 10 but he did not know the name of the individual.
- President Elliston advised that the board had met with attorneys David Feldman and George Vie via Zoom during the earlier E-Board meeting. The next hearing on the pleas as to the jurisdiction of the Annual Adjustment / Benefits Supplement lawsuit is set for July 2, 2021 in Travis County. It is hoped that once the jurisdiction issue is resolved, the attorneys can move more quickly into the merits of the case and ultimately to a favorable declaratory judgment. The board authorized the attorneys to take steps to avoid being limited by statute.
- The board approved taking steps to secure emails sent from the DPROA website by adding a “captcha” feature. The cost for this to be done is minimal and Ms Richtsmeier will coordinate this with Alex at Bluebird.
- Secretary Seguin provided the Treasurer’s Report in the absence of Treasurer Walker. He stated the total funds in various accounts amounted to $850,671.87, and of that amount $107,084.43 were designated funds for the lawsuit.
- Director Bland summarized the monthly report from the Ratliff Company. It included the status of HB3375 of Representative Davis as well as HB4068 relative to DPFPS entering TMRS. SB198 relating to retiree qualifications under LEOSA passed both houses in the legislature and is expected to become law. Two other bills (HB805 by Huberty and SJR22 by Huffman) did not pass nor become law.
- President Elliston reminded everyone that the annual DPD Retirees luncheon at the Double Tree hotel (Love Field) would be held on August 14 at 11 am – 3pm; $25 per person is due by August 1 to Hans Bryson or John Allen.
- President Elliston reported that he had received the $21,000 report written by the Logic Compensation Group LLC, titled as “2020 Salary & Benefits Survey Report – Conducted on Behalf of the Dallas Police & Fire Pension Fund.” The report raised some “red flags” and noted that Executive Director Kelly Gottschalk was the highest paid pension administrator with a salary of $347,759 before her last pay raise, and that she was $54,069 higher than any other pension administrator in the survey.
- The next board and general membership meetings are scheduled for July 14, 2021.
- Member Scotty Holt reminded everyone that the eight monthly breakfast & lunch socials for retirees had resumed at various restaurants in the metro area.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:47 am.
Kenneth E. Seguin