All APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter and APWU active National, State, and Area Local/Local officers, stewards, members, Auxiliary officers, members, and family guests are invited to attend the 19th Annual National APWU Health Plan Open Season Seminar, to be held from Sunday, October 24 thru Wednesday, October 27, 2004 at the Hotel Royal Plaza, 1905 Hotel Plaza Blvd., Lake Buena Vista, Fl. 32830. The Hotel is a union hotel located on Walt Disney World Resort property in the Orlando area. This is the first time in our APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter history that Florida has been chosen to host this National APWU Health Plan Annual Conclave.

Hotel Royal Plaza reservation APWU group rates are $89.00 nite, Single/Double, plus 11.5% taxes, or $99.24 night for a Lanai standard room, with the first night being charged to your credit card at the time of booking. The hotel deadline for this special rate is September 23, 2004. There is a 48-hour cancellation policy for this seminar if you need to cancel a room. For reservations, phone Hotel Royal Plaza at 800-248-7890 Extension 2500 and ask for the APWU group rate Code 3602, if available. Review the hotel website at
www.royalplaza.com to get more info and pictorial views. Hotel check in time is 3 pm and check out time is 11 am. For whatever reason, ask the front desk for a one hour extension to noon at no extra charge, if possible. You will find most of the employees are customer friendly to assist you.

You should arrive on Sunday, October 24 to register early and go over all your APWU Health Plan materials. The APWU Health Plan registration fee is only $50.00, which will be collected at the registration desk on October 24th or 25th when you register at the hotel. Note: Please do not send your payment to the APWU Health Plan! The registration fee includes a reception, continental breakfasts, coffee breaks, luncheon, banquet, APWU Health Plan 2005 descriptive materials, a free health screening, and an APWU Health Plan shirt of your size choice, if available.

Seminar advance registration on the internet is available for those who pre-register by Sept. 23, 2004 by going to
www.apwuhp.com and click Here for online seminar registration. An APWU Health Plan shirt with APWU Health Plan logo will be given to you at the Seminar. Don’t forget to register early on the website so that you will receive the shirt size you prefer.

19th Annual APWU Health Plan Open Season Seminar Agenda Schedule:
Sunday, Oct. 24 --- 4 to 6 pm --- pre-registration; check in and walk around the property.
Monday, Oct. 25 --- 7:30 to 10 am --- continued registration;
10 am to 4:30 pm --- Opening session, guests, and presentations; 5:30 to 7:30 pm --- Reception;
Tuesday, Oct. 26 --- 7:30 to 9 am --- Continental breakfast and trade show vendor focus;
9 am to 4:30 pm --- All day classroom sessions on benefits and marketing; 6 to 9 pm --- Banquet;
Wednesday, Oct. 27 ---- 7:30 to 9 am --- Continental Breakfast; 9 to 11 am --- Closing Session.

Learn what is new for your Health Plan in 2005, and check out the innovative consumer driven plan and the top-rated High Option plan for young and older families. Hear the latest news from APWU officers and health benefits industry experts. Participate in three (3) stimulating days of events, presentations, and discussions. The APWU Health Plan is owned by the membership of the APWU, and most of the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter dues paying members are enrolled or were enrolled once in the APWU Health Plan. This is a chance of a lifetime to attend a highly educational seminar inside your home state where you reside. Opportunity only knocks for those who seize the challenge!

If you show your APWU Health Plan group name badge to the employees working inside the Disney Gift Shop located in the Hotel Royal Plaza, you can obtain discounted 2-day or 4-day Walt Disney World tour passes for lower prices. Looking forward to welcoming everyone in Lake Buena Vista!


The first twenty (20) APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter union dues paying members and spouse or family member who sign in and attend the Retirees luncheon scheduled to be held on Thursday, October 21, 2004, the first day of classes for the APWU of Florida State Educational Seminar from October 21-23, 2004 at the Fall Seminar hotel located in West Palm Beach, will be awarded a free luncheon, limited to two (2) free luncheons per Retiree family. Information about the hotel will be published elsewhere in this issue of the Florida Postal Worker or when available.

The Retirees luncheon is scheduled from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm in the hotel restaurant at the Fall Seminar. Action by the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter Executive Board meeting in Daytona Beach, Florida on May 12, 2004 at the State Retirees Convention approved unanimously future Retirees luncheons at State Seminars to be paid by the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter funds to foster APWU unionism and family ties between the APWU of Florida dues paying active postal worker officers, stewards, members, and family members; the Auxiliary to APWU of Florida officers, members, and family members; and the APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter officers, members, and their family members. The State Retiree Chapter Executive Board will meet from 10 to 11 a.m. at the hotel.

An APWU invited guest speaker will inform all of us at the Retirees luncheon about the latest news from National APWU headquarters in Washington, D.C. and the National APWU Convention recently held in Los Angeles, Calif. Free APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter Happy Folders will be given out to each luncheon attendee. See you in West Palm Beach! Contact Jack Gose, President, at 727-343-2998 home phone or by E-mail at
jak.gose@excite.com if you need more info or have any questions.


We received an E-mail from the Manager of Office Information Computer Technology Systems of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) congratulating us on the great APWU of Florida State Retiree Chapter website at
www.apwuflorida.org/retiree which one of his employees called his attention to review. He liked especially the sidebar link Contact OPM on the Retiree home page which when you click, 15 Reasons to Call or Write OPM opens up. He was happy to recognize that we are sharing OPM Retiree information on the internet with our APWU active and retiree members and their families.

Phone the OPM Retirement Information Office at 888-767-6738 from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm Monday thru Friday to speak with a real live person, OPM Customer Service Specialist, to answer your many questions about retirement. The phone system is offered in English and Spanish. We recommend you place your call early in the morning after 7:30 am or late in the afternoon before 5:30 pm to not wait in line on the telephone or cell phone for an extended period of time. If you call at any other time before or after hours or on holidays, you will get an automated phone system, which is not too helpful sometimes. When you are dissatisfied with the OPM employee’s response to your questions, ask for an OPM supervisor or call back another time to get another opinion.

Many alert APWU active and retiree members and family members go on the internet to get OPM information by typing
www.opm.gov in the computer address bar at the top of the page. If you do not have a computer or do not know how to access information using a computer, go to any public library or college library and the librarian assistants will be glad to show you how to use the computer and obtain the information you desire. You can ask for copies of the information to build an OPM folder. The very best way to have a paper trail is to write a letter to: U.S. Office of Personnel Management, Retirement Operations Center at P.O. Box 45, Boyers, Pa. 16017 for CSRS employees and P.O. Box 200, Boyers, Pa. 16017 for FERS employees. Always keep a copy of your letters in a retirement folder for your family!

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