Wednesday, November 9, 2022 @ 11:00 am
The November 2022 General Membership meeting of the Dallas Police Retired Officers Association took place at Knights of Columbus Hall, 10110 Shoreview Drive, Dallas, TX 75238.
Present: President David Elliston
Secretary Ken Seguin
Treasurer David Potts
Director Boux Bland
Director Joe Richtsmeier
Director Crista Walker
DFR Advisor Larry Williams
Communications Director Carol Richtsmeier
Absent: Vice President Sally Lannom
- President Elliston called the meeting to order at 11:06 am.
- President Elliston led the membership in the Pledge of Allegiance.
- President Elliston announced the names of the 11 police and firefighters who had passed away during the month of October 2022 according to the DPFPS website.
- Ira Van Cleave, Jacob Arellano, James Beard, Clifford Holland, Robert Rowe, Clyde Goodson, Tommy Pettiet
- Jerry Russell, James Vara, Thomas Carr, Bobby Manley
- Former Vice-President Dwight Walker delivered the invocation.
- The minutes from the October 2022 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 Director Boux Bland. Motion carried by acclamation with none opposed.
- President Elliston provided an update from attorney George Vie on the DPROA lawsuit pending in the 5th Court of Appeals. The DPROA brief was filed in a timely manner but the pension fund attorneys, because of their involvement in the Townsend lawsuit, have now been granted a one month extension to respond, with the date moving from November 14 to December 14, 2022. This means that Mr Vie will likely be required to reply to their response by January 14, 2023. Mr Vie also expects that the City of Dallas will file an amicus curiae brief.
- President Elliston referred to the meeting he and Secretary Seguin had with Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn on September 20, 2022. At her suggestion, President Elliston said he has sent the first two emails of several planned to Mayor Eric Johnson and all 14 city council members, apprising them of the status of the pension and the harm done by HB 3158. He actually received acknowledgments from two council members (Paula Blackmon and Chad West). He has asked Comm Director Richtsmeier to post the first two emails to the DPROA website for the membership to read. He will also write a Presidential Brief to update the membership on work done over the past few months and will have it posted on the website.
- President Elliston announced that DPFPS Executive Director Kelly Gottschalk is scheduled to give a presentation on November 15 at 1:00 pm regarding the status of the pension fund to the City Council’s Budget Committee chaired by Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn. President Elliston and Secretary Seguin are planning to attend. Four questions were provided to her to consider:
- Since the reforms instituted by HB 3158, it does not appear that the system’s unfunded liability is improving. How do you plan to address this issue?
- Since the reforms of 2017 how many Police & Fire have joined DROP? Is DROP still a viable recruiting tool for our Police and Fire Departments?
- Retirees received their last Annual Adjustment and Benefit Supplement increases in October 2016. With the passing of six years with no increases and inflation now at 8%, do you have any near-term plans to alleviate the financial stress and loss of purchasing power experienced by retirees?
- How does the financial stability and funding of the Dallas Police & Fire Pension Fund compare with the non-sworn Employees Retirement Fund? Are investing strategies similar or dissimilar? Do you feel it is fair for retired non-sworn employees to receive COLA adjustments while retired sworn employees receive no Annual Adjustment?
- President Elliston reminded the board that Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn had been invited to speak to the DPROA General Membership on Wednesday, November 30 (the date being convenient to her schedule), and that this second November meeting would take the place of the regular meeting on December 14. He added that she is our ally and desires to work for us and with us to insure we all have a pension for years to come. She is not responsible for the problems of the past so please treat her with respect. Because the information she will be sharing is so vital to every retiree, the DPROA Executive Board has decided to open the meeting up to all retirees and their beneficiaries. If you have a retiree friend who is not a member of DPROA please invite them to come with you. Notice of the next meeting date and her scheduled appearance will be posted on Facebook and emails will be sent to the membership.
- Secretary Seguin briefed the membership on the October 21 Election Committee meeting. Other committee members were Mike Martin, Mike Milligan, and Robert Yowell. The positions coming up for the February 2023 election are: President, Secretary, Director 1, and Director 3. The membership was also was informed of the Executive Board’s desire to hold an election on anticipated DPROA constitutional amendments. The Election Committee recommended the use of Election America to conduct the election. To date, candidate applications have been received from incumbents Elliston, Seguin, and Walker. Director Bland announced that he intended to run for the Director 1 position again. Secretary Seguin advised that he would post the candidates announcement on Facebook and would forward the same information to Comm Director Richtsmeier so that she could post the information on the DPROA website and via email to the membership.
- Secretary Seguin reported that he had received input from Constitutional Amendment Committee member Robert Gutkowski which he needs to review and to also conduct an in-depth review himself. No input has yet been received form committee member Tom Moorman. Secretary Seguin expects for the committee to meet later in November.
- President Elliston stated that the monthly Treasurer’s Report would be available for review after the meeting. He mentioned that the Executive Board had authorized Treasurer Potts to move up to $200,000 from the Money Market account to short-term Certificates of Deposit. The City Credit Union is presently offering 4.15% interest on a Jumbo CD.
- The next General Membership meeting is scheduled for November 30, 2022 at 11:00 am.
- President Elliston noted that Judge Kristina Williams of the 192nd District Court, who had ruled against DPROA in the Annual Adjustment lawsuit, had lost her bid for reelection on November 8.
- Member Larry Eddington mentioned that former State Representative Dan Flynn who had helped craft HB 3158 revising the pension plan, had passed away during the past month.
- In response to a question from member Jim Freeman, Director Walker stated that 2-3 new retirees are joining DPROA each month.
- President Elliston recognized attending member David DeTamble who was celebrating his 62nd birthday this date.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:33 am.
Kenneth E. Seguin