Dallas Police and Fire Pension to reopen discussion about equal benefits

Posted on 23 Feb 2015 at 5:12pm

pensionAfter a contentious meeting on Feb. 12 that ended with no progress on complying with an IRS ruling to equalize benefits for same-sex partners, the Dallas Police and Fire Pension board called a “special meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 24.

At the previous meeting, board members asked gay and lesbian police officers, firefighters and EMTs to just wait until July after the U.S. Supreme Court rules on marriage equality. Officers at the meeting asked board members to put their own wives’ benefits on hold until then as well. Councilman Lee Kleinman even put that into a resolution.

The board voted down at least half a dozen resolutions put forth by Kleinman to resolve the issue and bring the fund in compliance with the IRS ruling.

After that meeting, Resource Center Communications and Advocacy Manager Rafael McDonnell forwarded information including news accounts and board minutes to the IRS, which responded that it is investigating. The fund could lose its tax preferred status if it fails to comply.

Since that meeting, the Dallas Employees Retirement Fund put in place a new policy recognizing same-sex marriages. That fund covers city employees outside the police and fire departments.

The board’s attorney advised board members that the IRS ruling conflicts with state law. That argument isn’t working well for the Alabama Supreme Court’s chief justice either.

Here’s the entire agenda for the Tuesday meeting:

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING ITEMS FOR INDIVIDUAL CONSIDERATION:

Consideration of Plan amendment to provide same-sex marriage survivor benefits

 

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