OPEA, Retiree Groups, Host Lobby Day

By Chancen Flick

On Wednesday, March 29, 2023, OPEA along with numerous other organizations including Oklahoma Retired Educators Association, Retired Firefighters, Oklahoma AFL-CIO, Teamsters, and Keeping Oklahoma Promises, hosted Retiree Day at the State Capitol.  This event was designed as an opportunity for members of the state’s Retirement Systems to come meet with their elected officials and advocate for key legislation that would improve their quality of life.

More than 100 retired and active state employees, educators, firefighters, law enforcement, and Teamsters met at the State Capitol and spent several hours meeting specifically with State Senators regarding House Bills 2020, 2171, and 2854.  These volunteers had many one-on-one and group conversations with elected officials to encourage that these bills be advanced through the legislative process and sent to Governor Stitt.  Descriptions of the bills can be found below.

Retiree day was a great success and we sincerely appreciate the work done by these dedicated volunteers in advocating on behalf of their fellow state employees!  If you or your co-workers are interested in participating in a lobby day event, please contact Chancen Flick at chancenf@opea.org

HB 2020 – Authored by Rep. Max Wolfley & Senator John Montgomery

Currently, retirees are exempt on the first $10,000 receive in income benefits.  This legislation will increase that limit to the first $20,000.  This will be the first increase since 2006. HB 2020 will allow retired public employees to have access to more expendable income to face the ever-increasing cost of living on a fixed income.


HB 2171– Authored by Rep. Ross Ford & Senator Paul Rosino

Grant a one-time benefit distribution to public retirees based upon their current monthly benefit with a minimum payment of $1,500 and a maximum of $3,200.  To qualify for the benefit an employee must have been retired for 2+ years. This is necessary due to inflation increasing the cost of living.


HB 2854 – Authored by Rep. Kevin Wallace & Senator Roger Thompson

Return Oklahoma State employees to the defined benefit OPERS system & terminate the state employee defined contribution system “Pathfinder”. Allows employees to purchase years of service credits. We believe by allowing new employees to participate in the defined benefit plan, the state will be better positioned to recruit & retain qualified employees.

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