1st Quarter 2010 Benefits Corner

Benefits Corner: Chevron PerkSpot website is good source for discounts 

by Al Horan

If you feel like most people, there is a continuing concern about the U.S. economy and our future. Wherever possible, individuals are changing their lifestyles and cutting costs. One way of cutting costs is to look for sales and discounts. As we know, the internet, AAA and AARP are great sources for discounts.

Another good source for discounts is Chevron's website - PerkSpot. PerkSpot lists discounts that have been arranged by Chevron with many merchants and service providers. The discounts are available on major purchases, like vehicles, and even on smaller everyday items - phone service, auto and homeowner's insurance, etc. I have personally used PerkSpot to obtain discounts on my Dell computer, Office Depot purchases and my AT&T cell phone service.

How can you also receive discounts through PerkSpot?

It's easy. For starters, just visit their website - http://chevrec.perkspot.com - and enroll. Enrollment is simple and free. Once enrolled you, too can begin receiving discounts.  In addition to PerkSpot, Chevron offers discounted Long-Term Care Insurance through MetLife. For details about that coverage and how it may be purchased, please visitchevron.metlife.com. If you do not have access to a computer please phone MetLife at 1-800-438-6388 between 8 AM and 11 PM, EST, Monday through Friday.  As you know, CRA also is a good source for purchasing discounted dental insurance - CRA Dental Program. (Please note we are working on trying to make the eligibility provision less restrictive for current CRA dues-paying Members.)  We also are looking at, and considering, making available discounts for merchandise and services that are not offered through Chevron. One such item is hearing aids. We welcome your comments and feedback about CRA making available discounts that would complement Chevron's program - beginning with hearing-aids.

Now, turning to another part of the budget process, income. We would like to update you on CRA's request to Chevron to consider a Pension Supplementation Increase. We were able to provide Chevron with economic and related data supporting an increase when we met with them in October. We believe they understand and respect our position. We will keep you apprised of our progress.

Finally, we would like to update you on a procedural clarification for CRA's Dental Program. As you may know, CRA consists of approximately 100 Local Chapters and 16,000 dues-paying Members. The Chapters as well as CRA National are staffed and run by unpaid volunteers. Because of the size and breadth of the Association, we have tried to simplify the administration for the Dental Program. However, this has sometimes led to misunderstandings and unrealistic expectations. Consequently, HDH (our dental consultant) and MetLife have created a uniform set of procedures for offering CRA's Dental Program to new dues-paying Members and any existing Member who did not receive an enrollment packet. While we recognize this change has limited application, we wish to make you aware of what's happening in case you know someone who would be affected. In short, it takes MetLife approximately one month to prepare and mail enrollment packets after receipt of new dues-paying Member data from the local Chapters and HDH. Local Chapters submit the data to HDH at the end of each calendar month. Therefore, please be patient. If you have questions or need assistance with a Benefits issue, please contact one of the following

Benefits Committee members:

• Al Horan, Caltex: E-Mail: mawhoran@verizon.net, Phone: 972-964-1787

• Virginia Benfield, Texaco: E-Mail: vbenfield@comcast.net, Phone: 281-558-3807

• Linda Bulla, Texaco: E-Mail: jo2nlin3a@earthlink.net, Phone: 615-832-1046

• Bill Dodge, Chevron/Gulf: E-Mail: wndodge@sbcglobal.net, Phone: 832-934-0680

• Herb Farrington, Unocal: E-Mail: herbf76@msn.com, Phone: 714-904-5825

• Richard Watkins, Unocal: E-Mail: wrwatkins@embarqmail.com, Phone: 903-451-3266