Friday, March 29, 2019

Vote for Doug Strand for Trustee of the Teachers' Retirement System of Illinois: Voting Begins April 1st

 "Mr. Strand holds two Bachelor’s and one Master’s degree. He was an accounting intern during his undergraduate years at Luther College with Price Waterhouse in Chicago, Illinois. After college, Mr. Strand worked as an account auditor in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 

"After that experience, Mr. Strand worked as an educator for forty years until his retirement at United Township in East Moline, teaching history, consumer education, and economics. Mr. Strand served as a member of the East Moline’s Police Pension Board and the East Moline City Council. Currently, Mr. Strand serves as Vice President of the Blackhawk College Board of Trustees.

"Mr. Strand also sat on the Board of the Service Plus Credit Union, a credit union founded by educators of East Moline High School.  And the Illinois Retired Teachers’ Association, a stalwart and resolute defender of retirees’ pension benefits, has selected this individual to steward and protect our funds and benefits. That’s more than a significant reason to Vote for Doug Strand.  

"But you should listen to Mr. Strand himself.  You’ll see why the IRTA endorses him too."

-John Dillon

Why I am not voting for Cinda Klickna:

It was the IEA leadership of Ken Swanson and Cinda Klickna that “proudly supported” Senate Bill 7 signed into law in June 2011, the bill that ensured that teachers’ evaluations and their tenure were tied to the Performance Evaluation Reform Act (Public Act 96-0861), the bill that ensured a so-called “streamlined process for the dismissal of teacher tenure,” the bill that also required an authorization of 75% for a strike vote in Chicago, to name just a few complications that confront today's teachers.

It was on July, 2, 2012 when Fred Klonsky, John Dillon, Michael Cousineau, Catherine Lenzini, and I met with Cinda Klickna and other IEA leaders to discuss our concerns about the IEA's willingness to negotiate teachers' and retirees' constitutionally-guaranteed pension benefits and rights. Of course, the IEA leadership did not heed our advice. 

Instead, 10 months later we witnessed the folly of the IEA leadership's agreement to a reduction of pension retirees’ benefits and rights in Senate Bill 2404 in May, 2013.  The IEA leadership believed SB 2404 would have thwarted any further attacks on the Pension Protection Clause. Fortunately, Michael Madigan never called for a vote on this bill.  What soon followed, however, was Michael Madigan’s Senate Bill 1 in December 2013, a diminishment and impairment of teachers’ and retirees’ constitutionally-guaranteed benefits. Senate Bill 1 was ruled unconstitutional by the Illinois Supreme Court on May 8, 2015.

-Glen Brown

1 comment:

  1. IRTA was informed that TRS will email a notice to all eligible voting annuitants with an email-on-file when voting begins online, which is planned as April 1. If an email is not-deliverable, they will send the member a mailed ballot to the address on file with TRS. All members without an email-on-file will receive a mailed ballot at the end of March. The election ends at 10 a.m. on May 1st.

    “It is critical that IRTA members vote for Doug Strand so that IRTA’s most important presence continues on the TRS board,” IRTA President Roger Hampton said. “We cannot and must not leave our pension investments to chance. I urge all members to vote for Doug Strand in April.”

    Members are advised to call TRS at 877-927-5877 if they do not receive a ballot via email or by mail by April 10, 2019.

    Voting annuitants will need to use their TRS login to vote in the secure area of the TRS website. If you have any questions, call TRS.