CSR endorses two candidates for CalPERS Members-at Large seat
CSR announced it will be endorsing two candidates: Michael Flaherman and David Miller for Position A on the CalPERS Board.
“We are confident both candidates will continue to advocate for the rights of retirees,” CSR President Tim Behrens stated.
The 2017-2018 Member-At-Large election is the first to use The California Public Employees’ Retirement System’s (CalPERS) new voting procedure. Eligible members will be able to cast their vote one of three ways: online, by telephone or by paper ballot. All three voting options are convenient, secure and easy to use. Retired members (excluding survivors and beneficiaries) whose effective date of retirement is on or before July 1, 2017, are eligible to vote in this election.
CalPERS invested a large amount of time and money to educate its members on the new voting procedures, including posting the information on their website and having CalPERS staff give presentations to educate members. CSR leaders were present for two election presentations by CalPERS staff members Kim Malm and Dallas Stone at the Retirees Roundtable in May and the CSR Board of Directors meeting in June. The different voting options will be supported and managed by a third-party vendor who will tally and report all votes without any involvement from CalPERS. CalPERS hopes this new flexible and user-friendly voting method will encourage eligible members to vote in any way that suits them best, whether it be via phone, mail or online.
“We are excited to offer our members a flexible and secure menu of voting methods that allow them to vote in a matter of seconds,” Douglas Hoffner, CalPERS Deputy Executive Officer, Operations, and Technology, said. “Technology is rapidly changing, and [it] provides us with the opportunity to meet our members’ individual needs when casting their ballot online, by phone, or by mail.” According to Hoffner, CalPERS’ goal is to increase voter participation, and they believe these changes will achieve it.
There will also be a separate call center which will be open 24/7 during the elections. Another perk of this new voting process is the candidate statements will be available via all voting options. This allows eligible voters to carefully review all candidates before placing their vote. There will be detailed instructions on how to vote in members’ ballot packages, and these will be mailed to members on Sept. 1.
The Member-at-large election is taking place to fill two representative seats for Position A and Position B, which is a seat on the CalPERS Board of Administration. The current incumbents, Joseph (JJ) Jelincic (Position A) and Michael Bilbray (Position B), will expire on Jan. 15, 2018. JJ Jelincic chose not to pursue another term, and Michael Bilbray is on the ballot for Position B alongside three other candidates: Bruce H. Jennings, Margaret Brown and Wisam (Sam) Altowaiji. CSR is currently interviewing
candidates to endorse for Position B. If a candidate does not receive a majority vote, a runoff election will occur between the two candidates who received the highest number of votes. In this case, a ballot package will be mailed on Nov. 10, 2017, and voting will end on Dec. 11, 2017.
Currently, the CalPERS Board consists of 13 members who are elected, appointed or hold office ex officio for four-year terms. The Board composition is mandated by law and cannot be changed unless approved by most of the registered voters in the state. Board Members may also serve on permanent or ad hoc committees. Their decisions affect all active and retired members.
For the complete candidate statements, please visit Page 5 of the California State Retiree August Edition
For questions or general information regarding the 2017 Member-at-large election, contact the CalPERS Board Election office at 1-800-794-2297 or visit: www.calpers.ca.gov/page/about/board/board-elections