Police Officer and Firefighter Retirement Eligibility
Under ORS 238A.160(2) and 238A.165(2), an OPSRP Pension Program member establishes eligibility for retirement as a police officer and firefighter (P & F) member by working in a P & F position continuously for a period of not less than five years immediately prior to his or her effective date of retirement. The modifications clarify the five year continuous employment as police P & F prior to the effective date of retirement and the status of a member who is employed concurrently as P & F and other than P & F. The rule modifications address two scenarios:
Separating from one P & F position and starting another P & F position does not restart the five-year (60-month) clock for eligibility so long as the member does not have a break in retirement credit.
If a member works concurrently in a P & F and general service position, the five-year (60-month) clock is not restarted so long as the member remains continuously employed in the P & F position.
Annually, the Internal Revenue Service revises various dollar limits based on cost-of-living adjustments. These revisions are used throughout the PERS plan’s statutes and rules, but revisions to the limits must be adopted by the legislature or PERS Board to be effective.
The IRS’ revisions that are to be effective for calendar year 2013 have been announced. The rule modifications incorporate these adjustments and make non-substantive edits to update citations and effective dates. These updates are necessary to ensure PERS compliance with the IRC’s limits on the amount of annual compensation allowed for determining contributions and benefits, the limits on annual benefits, and the limits on annual additions to PERS.
Reemployment of Retired Members
Under ORS 238.082, a Tier One or Tier Two retired member who returns to PERS-covered employment may continue to receive his or her retirement benefits so long as he or she works less than 1,040 hours in a calendar year or the number of hours the member can work and not exceed the Social Security annual compensation limits.
The Social Security Administration has announced the 2013 Social Security annual compensation limits. The new limits are $15,120 (for retired members who have not reached full retirement age under the Social Security Act) and $40,080 (for the calendar year in which the retired member reaches full retirement age under the Social Security Act and only for compensation for the months before reaching full retirement age).
The proposed modifications to OAR 459-017-0060 reflect the 2013 Social Security earnings limitations. The new limitations are not effective for PERS purposes until adopted by the Board.