RFFOW President’s Report | September 2018

By Richard C. Warbrouck

Our Directors had a meeting on September 4, 2018 with representatives from the Seattle Retired Po lice Officers and the retired Snohomish County Deputy Sheriff’s Associations.




We discussed:

  • The development of a State Law Enforcement Officers Political Association and will schedule a meeting with the Washington State Retired Deputy Sheriffs and Police Officers Association, WSRDSPO. The WSRDSPO is already a state association and may be more social than political with their current dues structure.
  • Opening up the Retired Firefighters of Washington to all law enforcement officers.
  • We would have to amend our bylaws to allow these officers to join and hold office, restructure our board of directors, establish districts and other changes.

We would first have to have a recommendation from our board, a vote at a regular meeting and possibly a referendum vote of our membership to make this change.

  • The inclusion of both LEOFF I and LEOFF II firefighters and law enforcement officers.
  • The name of the new organization would be similar to Retired Fire and Law Enforcement Officers of Washington, RFLEOOW.
  • A mail out to all LEOFF I members, 7300 or to all LEOFF I and LEOFF II members, 12,300.
  • A one page mailing with some sort of a return to gain address and email address to reduce the cost of future mailings.
  • A special Newsletter type mailing with more information.
  • The cost of various mailings.
  • How and where to schedule meetings in different locations of the State.
  • How to find locations and schedule meetings and other logistics.
  • Consulting with an advertising agency for ideas and suggestions.
  • It was decided that we all would forward a list of points that we would put in a one page mail out to Jerry Taylor. Jerry will compile all the various suggestions onto one list and take it to a relative who works for an advertising agency for her input.

If you have any ideas as to how we can reach out to everyone or where we can hold a meeting in your area, please let us know.  We are going to schedule meetings with several retiree groups around the state to gain information and hopefully a consensus:  Bellingham Fire, Renton Fire, Yakima Fire, Vancouver Fire, Everett Fire, Tacoma Fire, Spokane Fire, Aberdeen Fire, Tacoma Police and Bellingham Police.  If you know of any other retiree groups that meet on a regular basis, please let us know.

I have attended several candidate’s fundraisers, have received several calls and will continue to receive calls daily from now to November from candidates or legislators asking for a donation and for our endorsement.  These candidates seem to be cut from the same cloth.  They all have the same agenda.  If they are Democrats they want to get rid of Trump.  I sometimes want to re mind them that they are not running for the US Senate or the US Con gress.  They are running for the Washington State Senate and the Washington State House of Representatives.  They are all representing a party but none of them suggest that they can be independent on an issue.  I often ask, if the two parties are going to vote as a block, why do we send so many to Olympia?

Why not just send three or four from each party. They are all for education, solving the homeless and transportation problems but have no solutions to offer.  They never mention:

  • Recent right-to-work laws and the Janus US Supreme Court de cision
  • State retirement systems unfunded liabilities
  • The Social Security Windfall Elimination Act
  • The high cost of medical care for retirees
  • The increase in home values and the hardship it puts on retirees in paying property taxes. We need property tax relief for retirees.
  • We continually have overruns in transportation budgets.
  • We purchase fire trucks that won’t fit in the doors of the fire stations.
  • We purchase streetcars that won’t fit the tracks.

King County recently announced that the county is going to spend $12 million dollars to purchase living units for 170 people.  That’s about $70,588.00 per unit plus up keep, utilities and maintenance.

There is also talk about modular units at $150,000 per unit.  Would n’t it be better to purchase small trailers and develop a trailer park or build army type barracks and a mess hall on vacant property?  It’s time that we start electing candi dates as if we are hiring them to run our business.

For those of you who live in the  5th US Congressional District, Spokane area, there are two candidates running for the US Congress.  Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rogers  and Candidate Lisa Brown (D). If you vote the party line that is certainly your option.  If you are concerned regarding party majority in the US Congress, that’s also a consideration.  If you just look at the two candidates you might want to consider that Cathy McMorris Rogers is an incumbent and has a leadership position in the US Congress.  Lisa Brown, as a Washington State Senator and Chair of the Ways and Means Committee, hired an attorney from the State of Florida recognized as a specialist in pension law, to assist her in modifying or amending the LEOFF I Retirement System.  The first attempt was to transfer the surplus to the General Fund.  The second attempt was to close the system, transfer any surplus funds to the General Fund then reopen the retirement system as a LEOFF III system with supposingly the same benefits and less assets.

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