Stakeholders get update on APS health

POSTED: 11/21/14 11:38 AM

St. Maarten—A presentation on the health of the pension fund—which includes challenges faced and projects undertaken or that are under consideration– was given to stakeholder representatives by representatives of the APS. Discussions were also held on the investments that have been made to date.

Among the outlined projects are plans for a housing project for members, the fund acting as a mortgage bank for its membership and the development of the Mary’s Fancy area. These projects have the support of the union. On the development of Mary’s Fancy, Elshot said she is pleased that the plans include a restaurant which will not only be a tourist attraction but is intended to be a place where learning takes place. Elshot believes that this is a reliable investment of the members’ money.

The union leader is also on board with plans for the housing project and the mortgage bank, though there are still kinks to be worked out. She believes that currently it is very difficult for persons to get their feet on the property ladder and these two initiatives will go a long way towards making it possible for civil servants to become home owners.

She stressed that these are the types of projects that will benefit the membership and noted that the members are the biggest stakeholders of the pension fund. Elshot has in the past been very vocal on the need to have sound investments made with the pension fund, and was openly critical of any loan being made to government by the APS.

The APS representatives also used the time to address issues on notification of the members’ pension status explaining that members were notified up till November 2011. Some persons have said they did not receive these notifications and Elshot recommends that those who haven’t received theirs follow up on the matter.

She also took the time to advise persons nearing the compulsory retirement age to file their notice of retirement six months in advance at the SZV and APS offices to avoid any misunderstandings and delays in collecting their pensions.

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