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Retirement Planning Tip

June 2016 - How is my Social Security Retirement Benefit calculated?


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Work-Life Services Home Page

Work-Life Services Brochure

Work–Life Services (WLS) are five negotiated benefits programs for Executive Branch employees resulting from a collaboration between NYS and the public employee unions. These programs are designed to increase employee productivity and morale by improving the quality of work and life for employees and include: Employee Assistance Program, Worksite Child Care Centers, Flex Spending Account, NYS–Ride, and Pre–Retirement Planning.

To view or print the Work-Life Services Brochure click here.

Employer Contribution for PEF Represented Employees

As a result of the ratification of the 1 year contract, PEF represented employees who are currently enrolled in the Dependent Care Advantage Account will have the Employer Contribution automatically applied to their account for the 2016 plan year.

PEF represented employees who enroll in the Dependent Care Advantage Account with an eligible Change In Status (CIS) event will now be eligible for the Employer Contribution for the remainder of the 2016 plan year.

Please visit the Flex Spending Account Website for updates and details as they emerge.

EAP: June is National Safety Month

Injuries are a leading cause of disability for people of all ages – and they are the leading cause of death for Americans ages 1 to 44. The good news is everyone can get involved to help prevent injuries. During National Safety Month, we encourage you to learn more about important safety issues like prescription painkiller abuse, transportation safety, and slips, trips, and falls.

  • Prescription painkiller abuse: Prescription painkiller overdoses are a growing problem in the United States, especially among women. About 18 women die every day from a prescription painkiller overdose – more than 4 times as many as back in 1999.
  • Transportation safety: Doing other activities while driving – like texting or eating – distracts you and increases your chance of crashing. Almost 1 in 5 crashes (17%) that injured someone involved distracted driving.
  • Slips, trips, and falls: One in 3 older adults falls each year. Many falls lead to broken bones and other health problems. You can make a difference. Find out ways to help reduce the risk of these safety issues.

For more information on these topics and others:

For additional information or assessment and referral services, contact your NYS agency EAP coordinator. Coordinator List

Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Fun at NYS Worksite Center Summer Camps

Are you looking for a summer camp for your school-aged child? Did you know that many of the NYS Worksite Child Care Centers offer summer camp for children ages five – 12? All of the worksite summer camps are conveniently located within, or in close proximity to the child care centers at various state sites. All the summer camps offer weekly themes to ensure your child will be entertained while gaining knowledge on a variety of topics in a caring environment. What questions should I ask when I call about enrolling my child for summer camp? Click here for more information

Enroll in the DCAAccount

Great news for state employees! If in order for you and your spouse (if you are married) to be able to work, you plan to send your child under the age of 13, to summer day camp, a Change in Care Provider (including summer day camp) is an eligible Change in Status event that allows you to enroll in the Dependent Care Advantage Account (DCAAcount) for the remainder of 2016. Also, the Employer Contribution is available to eligible employees who enroll in the DCAAccount to help pay for summer day camp expenses. Please visit www.flexspend.ny.gov or call (800) 358-7202 for more information, Employer Contribution rates, or to enroll.

Welcome to the Family Packet

Work-Life Services introduces the "Welcome to the Family Packet". Parenting is an exciting and challenging experience. Today's parents often face unique circumstances balancing their work and family responsibilities. As a New York State Executive Branch employee parent, you are entitled to several negotiated benefits designed to assist you with balancing work and life. The "Welcome to the Family Packet" will outline these benefits programs as well as provide educational child care and parenting brochures. We invite you to request a "Welcome to the Family Packet" if you are expecting or recently added to your family through the birth or adoption of a child. Email your request along with your name and home address to: worklife@goer.ny.gov.

"Parenthood, it's not a job. It's an adventure" – author unknown

Retirement Planning Resources Workshops

The Retirement Planning Resources Workshop is a free, one-hour training, available to state agencies for their employees, regardless of years of state service. The training will not cover specific retirement information, and is not a substitute for the full-day DIRECTIONS seminars. Instead, the goal of this training program is to educate executive branch employees about the resources available so they can begin planning their retirement.

If you would like to schedule this one-hour training, you may contact Beth Brumaghim, Seminar Program Manager, at Beth.Brumaghim@goer.ny.gov or 518.473.4018.

WellNYS Everyday

The NYS Work-Life Services Employee Assistance Program recently launched a wellness initiative called WellNYS Everyday. The initiative is dedicated to educating, engaging, and empowering New York State employees and their families by encouraging participation in healthy behaviors, particularly the Monthly Challenges.

Retirement Planning Videos

Monitor displaying YouTube video

A series of short videos — the Planning Your Successful Retirement Video Guide — highlighting key information from the popular DIRECTIONS: Pre-Retirement Planning Seminars is now available. Designed for executive branch employees, the 23 videos were created in partnership with the Office of the State Comptroller, the Department of Civil Service, the NYS Deferred Compensation Plan, and the Social Security Administration. Employees can view the videos along with other pre-retirement planning information on this Work-Life Services website and also on YouTube at www.youtube.com/user/GOERWebServices.

NYS-Ride

NYS-Ride allows eligible state employees to pay up to $255 per month for certain work-related transportation expenses on a pre-tax basis. More than 8,000 participants who use public transportation to get to work currently enjoy the saving this program provides, while contributing to a greener environment by reducing carbon emissions, greenhouse gasses, and dependence on foreign oil.

The NYS-Ride website provides employees with quick and easy access to all the information they would need to learn about the program, calculate their savings and impact on the environment, enroll in NYS-Ride, make changes to their elections, or view their accounts. Please visit the website at www.nysride.com

2016 Flex Spending Account Changes in Status and New Employees

The FSA 2016 open enrollment period ended on November 24, 2015. Employees who experience a valid change in status on or after November 25, 2015 or during the 2016 plan year, may be eligible to enroll by submitting a Change in Status application. Visit www.flexspend.ny.gov to review the 2016 Change in Status information to determine if your situation qualifies you to enroll during the plan year.

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