About USEP-R

We are the retired school employees affiliated with USEP, Florida Association, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO, and the NEA.

United School Employees of Pasco Retired is dedicated to protecting our retirement and heath benefits and supporting public education. You have retired, but your union is still working for you! Protecting Pensions and Insurance-Working with the national
union, the state federation, and local, our chapter can help with threats to insurance and pension protections.
Networking-Affiliation with retiree advocacy groups extends your reach on retiree issues.

Preserving a Legacy-Retirees know first hand that working people and their unions continue to lead the way in making a more decent and just life for all Americans.

Dues are $19.00 for USEP-R, $30.00 for the NEA, and $11.00 for FEA for a total of $60.00 payable to USEP-R. You will automatically be a member of the AFT’s retiree unit without additional dues. There is also an opportunity to become a lifetime FEA/NEA member for $350.00. Members who choose this option would only pay the local dues of $19 each year. In addition, if you wish to be a Tiger Pride member, you need to pay an additional dues of $10.00 minimum per year payable to Tiger Pride.
USEP-R plans on having monthly meetings (second Friday of each month) to give all members a chance to stay up to date on the challenges facing USEP and will allow members to continue to be an active voice for education in Pasco

USEP-R Officers

Frank Roder-President
Lee Ogden-Vice President
Cathy Mirenda-Treasurer
Linda Ruggieri-Secretary
Andrew Lewandowski-Organizer
Carl Waldron-Member At Large
Ethel Dumas-Educational Partnership

Upcoming Events/Meetings

All meetings are held at USEP offices in Land O Lakes, FL

All meetings are the second Friday of the month at 10a-11:30a

Please note: We are trying to make our presence more dynamic by using FB to communicate with all parties. Please like us and visit us at United School Employees of Pasco-R

Need a fast response to a question; email Carl Waldron:

February 5, 2016 EBoard
February 12, 2016 General Meeting

March 4, 2016 Eboard
March 11, 2016 General Meeting

April 1, 2016 EBoard
April 8, 2016 General Meeting

May 6, 2016 EBoard
May 13, 2016 General Meeting

June 3, 2016 EBoard
June 10, 2016 General Meeting

July 1 , 2016 EBoard (alternate site)
July 8, 2016 No meeting scheduled

Summary of Previous Events/Meetings

USEP-R Minutes 1:10:16

USEP-R minutes


10:30-12:00 pm

In Attendance: Calvin and Nola Branche, Ken Carpenter, Karen Crowe, Linda

McMullen, Beverly Ledbetter, Pat Withers, Pam Perry, Andrew Lewandowski, Cathy

Mirenda, Gene Brumblay, Frank Weiss, Lee Ogden, Frank Roder, Janice Humphrey

and Linda Ruggieri

Frank called the meeting to order at 10:30. Phones were silenced. The pledge was

said and members present introduced themselves. We acknowledged January

Birthdays. Gene Brumblay went over how we give a round of applause for

birthdays. We clap in a circular motion. Our birthday people were Calvin Branche

and Dave Holmes, Cathy Jarvi and Frank Weiss.

Lee brought up the only concern of our members. It was the craziness of how the

new districts were formed and we should keep an eye on what is going on because

of it. Some of our legislators will probably move to their new districts. If they move

they will be able to be in office 10 years instead of 8. It was the luck of the draw

who would get what district depending on if they got an even or odd number. It was

brought up of course they have only our interest in mind.

The FEA President meeting is coming up on January 26, 2016. It was brought up at

the e-board meeting on January 8th that when Frank goes to the meeting he pays his

own expenses and we would like to give him $50 to help pay for some of the cost.

Karen brought up the motion to do so and Andrew seconded it. We voted and it was

approved to give Frank $50. Cathy will take care of that after Frank goes to the

meeting and brings back receipts showing he was there.

The next think that was discussed was the Jack Kinnaman Scholarship Fund. FEA

asked each local to donate $50 to the cause. Last year Gene took care of the whole

amount. This year we would like to have a motion to pay $50 to the Jack Kinnaman

fund so he could ring it to the meeting on January 28, 2016. Linda McMullen moved

that we do this and Andrew seconded it. It was voted on and approved. Cathy will

give Frank a check for $50 to bring to the meeting.

Frank directed the group to the minutes of our last meeting. Linda Ruggieri told the

group that they all received a electronic copy and I hard copy if they wanted it. A

motion to approve the minutes was presented it was seconded and approved.

Frank talked about the Youth Summit at the University Area Community Center on

1/23/16. They are expected 150 Middle and High School students to attend. They

will have workshops on Domestic Violence Human Trafficking, Internet Safety,

Bullying, Teen suicides, Std’s. Also presentations about students either going to

College or Full time employment and all kinds of things directed at students.

Frank was on a MORE conference call on January 7th for an hour and 10 minutes.

Presidents of the different retired locals were on that call. FEA is giving more

money this year to help improve membership in the retired chapters of the locals.

Arizona is not doing a MORE program. They sent out post cards to members that

have retired in the past 5 years or less. If member is interested they will call the

number on the post card so they can get more information and possibly join. They

then are put into a drawing to possibly win $100 gift card. Having the retirees call

us it helps us get a more accurate list and not call retirees who maybe have moved

or are deceased. Instead of each local sending out the post cards and handling the

mailings and making the phone calls. Todd will send it out for us from Washington

with our number on it and then the member would be calling us. In our discussion

of this it was decided is a very good idea. This will take a lot of stress off us and

they would get the return mail. On the call the Retired Union Presidents then

discussed the different things they did to get members.

It was decided in October 2015 that NEA union members must join their local

unions. Most lifetime members are members for the insurances that are available to

them. People do not realize that when then retire then lose NEA insurance unless

they continue their membership with NEA and local unions.

He gave us some Articles

1. Study Finds Unions Improve Teacher Quality, Lead to Lower Dropout Rates.

It did not get a lot of press. This study showed that schools that had

collective bargaining the good teachers stay on longer and the bad teachers

get knocked out earlier. They also found out that drop out rates are lower.

2. System to evaluate teachers needs complete overhaul. It shows how it is not


3. How Arne Duncan Reshaped American Education and Made Enemies Along

the Way. Arne Duncan alienated everybody. From both the right and the left.

He had a big impact on education. No child left behind, Race to the Top,

Common core state adoptions. There are 35 states that have common core.

Texas and Alaska have receded common core.

Read across America. This is about volunteers going into the schools and reading to

the students. Beverly will check with the schools in our county to see which ones

would be interested in. Karen brought up the fact that these people would have to

be registered volunteers in the county. They would have to contact the district

office to find out how to go about this.

Lee told us that she had email Kurt Browning in early December inviting him to

speak to our group. She has not gotten a response. She will follow up next week

after school starts up again. If you have any ideas about speakers please let Lee


Also Pasco County is looking for volunteers to judge the Pasco Regional Science and

Engineering Fair and the S.T.E.M.Fair.

It will be held at River Ridge High School and the dates are 2/13/16 and 4/23/16. If

interested please see Lee for forms. It is all done on I pad’s, there is no calculating

you just score and they do the rest.

Connected cities activity in Pasco north of Wesley Chapel over the next 50 years

they are going to be putting in 37000 residential units and adding 96000 people to

that swamp area. 7800 acres, 30% of the area is useable and the rest is a wetlands

and recharge area. It is between 52 and 54 east of Curley and Pasco Road. Senator

Simpson proposed this and he snuck it in at the end of the year. It takes all

regulation away from Swift mud and all the other people and it goes to the County

Commission. They will be the final authority.

The FEA membership report does not have the correct number of members for

USEP-R. We have 32 members but they have an incorrect number. We are working

to get that corrected. The FEA-R treasurer was hospitalized and is now retired.

Treasurer's report

Checking $1520.66

Savings $201.07


Andrew told us about the meeting he attended at Saddle brook. They are working

on updating key concepts for USEP under the guidance of Lynn Caval and Kenny

Blankenship. They talked about possibly getting rid of the USEP website and going

to some more social media to get information out faster. Also a possible different

meeting place. Switching up meeting agendas getting members more involved.

Maybe we can get ideas for us.

We spoke about awards given by FEA to Local’s Retirement units. Although USEP-R

did not receive any awards, we thought we should discuss this at our regular

meeting so we can make people aware of the “Volunteer Hours” award so everyone

could fill out a report showing all the wonderful things everyone does and does not

get paid. Such as coming to our meeting, volunteering at different places, like Ruth

Eckerd, Humane Society or any other place you give your time. Andrew told us

about that the Northwest bus garage is passing around a petition to dissolve all SRP

relationships with USEP. He will keep us informed.

We also discussed FRS and the changes that the legislative bodies up in Tallahassee

want to change it to only investment. They want to do this because people usually

do not stay more than 5 years. Beverly asked they why don’t they look into why

people leave instead. Cal would like us to discuss how we would handle the

evaluation process. So maybe we could give them some ideas.

Kathy told us that Wendell Krinn had passed away and would get information to us

when she has it.

We talked about elections will be taking place in April and we need to encourage all

40 people here to vote. The speeches will be given in March. There will be a form

to fill out in February if interested in running for President, Vice-President,

Bookkeeper, and Secretary.

The election Committee must be people that are not running for office. Patti

Withers, Cathy Mirenda, Gene Brumblay and Pam Perry volunteered to be on that


Lee would like to investigate having a membership card for our USEP-R signed by

the President and Vice-President with our logo on it.

Meeting was adjourned at 11:57am

Looking to be involved in our organization? Print out the brochure and mail to the address enclosed.


Join by attending one of our scheduled meetings and sign-up then!

Meetings are held at;
USEP Office Building
21322 Lake Patience Road
Land O' Lakes, FL 34638

Mailing address is;
PO Box 1098
Land O' Lakes, FL 34639