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RAO is moving to Bldg. 1604

The Retiree Activities Office at Joint Base Andrews will re-open Nov. 19 in Building 1604. The office is located between the dining hall and the dental clinic, where California Avenue dead ends into Colorado Avenue. The phone number remains the same. Call 301-981-2726 for assistance. Until the office re-opens, calls are being forwarded to the RAO at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling. The Bolling office is located in Room 112, Building 20, just inside the main gate. The telephone number is 202-767-5244. Both offices are manned from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, providing services to military retirees, their spouses, widows or widowers or to anyone acting on their behalf. Contact with the military retiree community is also maintained through a retiree link from the Andrews web site, in this weekly column and at an annual Retiree Appreciation Day. Director of the 11th Wing Retiree Activities Offices is retired Col. John Moser. Volunteer rosters have thinned in recent years and daily staffing is a challenge. Some see RAO tours as payback time. For others, its an opportunity to stay in touch with the past. The welcome mat is out at both locations for customers and volunteers.

myPay tracks benefits

More than a million military retirees and annuitants use myPay, the online account management system for military members, retirees, annuitants and Department of Defense employees, to monitor their pay and survivor benefits; keep their contact and beneficiary information current; and control their allotments, direct deposit and tax withholdings. Most retirees created accounts after DFAS began providing a monthly electronic Retiree Account Statement. This is a complete summary of pay, deductions and benefits. It includes a Survivor Benefit Plan counter that shows how much longer premiums must be paid. Retirees who switch to myPay have hands-on control of their pay and can receive early copies of their IRS Form 1099-R and other important documents. To create a myPay account, visit www.mypay.dfas.mil. Click on "Forgot or Need a Password" to have a temporary password mailed to you. Then return to the myPay home page and click on "Create an Account."

Want more life insurance?

Some veterans with Veterans Group Life Insurance can increase their coverage to the maximum amount under the Servicemembers Group Life Insurance program. About 70 percent of veterans with VGLI are under age 60 and have less than $400,000 of coverage. Veterans can increase their coverage by $25,000 at each five-year anniversary date of their policy to $400,000. VGLI allows newly discharged veterans to convert SGLI coverage they had on active duty to a civilian program. Previously, the VGLI was limited to the amount of SGLI they had at the time of separation. Those discharged prior to Sept. 1, 2005 were limited to $250,000 VGLI. Now, on their first five-year anniversary, these veterans can increase their coverage to $275,000. On their next five-year anniversary, they can increase the coverage to $300,000, and so forth. The veterans health is not an issue. Eligible veterans are notified of this opportunity a week before the start of the 120-day period prior to their anniversary date, and twice more before the actual anniversary date. For more information go to www.va.gov or call 1-800-827-1000.