EMPLOYERS

Due to the impact of COVID-19 on employer budgets, the PERS Board has approved extending the payment date for the first full EIF application cycle to December 1, 2020, or when all matching funds have been paid into employer side accounts.


Due to overwhelming interest, the first round of the Employer Incentive Fund (EIF) is now waitlist only.

 

All eligible funds for the first EIF application cycle have been allocated to employers. By law, applications were approved in the order they were received.

 

Funds matched for 2019: $41,555,879.58

 

Funds allocated for 2020: $58,399,039.42

 

Information through January 31, 2020, dates and amounts are subject to change
EIF approved employers list.

EIF waitlist.

 

The Employer Incentive Fund (EIF) provides a 25% match (up to the greater of 5% of an employer’s UAL or $300,000) on qualifying employer lump-sum payments made after June 2, 2018. Employers must apply to receive matching funds (see details below). Participation in the EIF is a key opportunity for employers to proactively manage their employer rates over time and increase their actuarial assets.

PERS accepted applications​ from all employers beginning at 10 a.m. on Monday, December 2, 2019. View this list to see your minimum and maximum potential EIF matchDue to overwhelming interest, the first round of the Employer Incenti​ve Fund (EIF) is now waitlist only.

Applications were approved on a first come, first served basis. The application period will remain open until August 31, 2020, or until all available funds have been paid.

All employers interested in applying for the EIF, including to get on the waitlist, must submit an application (https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PERS_EIF_2019), noting their intention to make at least the required minimum lump-sum payment amount, providing the date of the intended lump-sum payment, verifying that the funds are not sourced from borrowed money, and providing proof of participation in the UAL Resolution Program (UALRP)​.
Review the application questions and gather your supporting information.
 
Employers can apply for matching funds: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PERS_EIF_2019
 
 
 Eligibility
  • Employers must make a lump-sum payment of at least $25,000. This payment may establish a new side account or be an additional payment into an existing side account.

  • The money you intend to use for this lump-sum payment cannot be borrowed.

  • Employers must participate in the UAL Resolution Program (UALRP)​. This requirement is satisfied by answering the last two questions in the EIF application.

  • State and Local Government Rate Pool (SLGRP) employers must pay their transition liability before they are eligible for a side account. Transition liabilities are not eligible for matching funds from the Employer Incentive Fund.

  • This list of all employers shows the minimum and maximum amount you may receive through the Employer Incentive Fund.

  • Employers agree to the terms defined in Oregon Administrative Rules 459-009-0084 or 459-009-0085, 459-009-0091, and 459-009-0092.

 Side Accounts 101

Side accounts do not "pay off" an employer's UAL, and there is no direct mechanism to "pay off" the UAL. The UAL represents the difference between the assets an employer has, and the liabilities, or responsibilities, it has to its members. To reduce the UAL, an employer needs to either increase its assets or reduce its liabilities. Side accounts, established with lump-sum payments, increase an employer’s assets by pre-paying pension obligations. Side accounts pay a portion (or all) of what an employer pays on their employer statements. Side accounts are an increase in an employer's assets, reducing the gap between assets and liabilities, thereby reducing the employer's UAL.

  • Employers have two options to create a side account:

    • Pay for an actuarial calculation to start employer rate offset early

      • This allows the employer to choose a rate offset date and, if applicable, amortization period (requires a contribution of $10 million or more).

      • Requires 45 days’ notice to PERS and 30 days of processing for the PERS actuary before the desired rate offset date.

      • Provides the employer with a document from the PERS actuary indicating the amount of rate offset the employer can expect to receive before committing to make the lump-sum payment. 

      • Initial fee for calculation related to one lump-sum payment is $1,000. Each additional lump-sum payment calculation or rate offset date is an additional $250.

    • ​Forgo an actuarial calculation

      • An employer can make a lump-sum payment with 30 days’ notice to PERS.

      • No actuarial calculation fees are required.

      • From the time of payment until rate calculation, the lump-sum payment is invested in the Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund (OPERF). 

      • The value of the lump-sum payment will be used in calculating the employer’s rates in the actuarial valuation for the year in which the employer makes the lump-sum payment, and will be made effective July 1 of the year following publication of that valuation.

  • Once a side account is established, an employer may make up to two additional payments to the account in a year with no minimum payment requirements.

  • A $1,500 administrative fee on the side account is charged at the end of the first calendar year as part of earnings crediting. The administrative fee is reduced to $500 for subsequent years.

  • Once an employer makes a side account payment, it becomes a part of the trust fund, and while it will be used solely for the employer’s benefit, it cannot be refunded to the employer.

  • Side accounts are invested by the Oregon State Treasury in the Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund (OPERF). Earnings or losses are applied to the account at the end of each year.

Do you want a rate offset when you apply for the EIF?

 

When applying for the EIF, you have the option to pay for an actuarial calculation ($1,000 initial fee) and select a specific rate offset date. Your application will notify PERS Actuarial Services of your interest. Upon approval, PERS Actuarial Services will reply with next steps and further information.

If you choose a specific rate offset date, your contribution rate will be reduced as of that date (the first of any month). To allow time to work with the PERS actuary, please review the chart below. 

 
If you want your rate offset to start: The PERS actuary must receive your check, invoice, and contract for a new rate calculation by: ​The last date you can notify PERS Actuarial Services of your intent to make a lump-sum payment:
​January 1, 2020 ​December 2, 2019 ​December 27, 2019
​February 1, 2020 December 18, 2020 ​January 29, 2020
​March 1, 2020 January 16, 2020 ​February 26, 2020
​April 1, 2020 February 17, 2020 ​March 27, 2020
​May 1, 2020 March 17, 2020 ​April 28, 2020
​June 1, 2020 April 17, 2020 ​May 27, 2020
​July 1, 2020 ​May 18, 2020 ​June 26, 2020
​August 1, 2020 June 17, 2020 ​July 29, 2020
​September 1, 2020 July 20, 2020 ​August 27, 2020
​October 1, 2020 ​August 17, 2020 ​September 28, 2020
​November 1, 2020 ​September 17, 2020 ​October 28, 2020
​December 1, 2020 ​October 17, 2020 November 26, 2020​
​Please note, the actuarial documents must be mailed to the PERS actuary.
  

​If you do not want to pay for an actuarial calculation, or you do not want a specific date for a rate offset:

 
The last date you can notify PERS Actuarial Services of your intent to make a lump-sum payment: ​Your lump-sum payment must be received by: Your rate offset will be applied:
December 26, 2019 ​December 31, 2019 July 1, 2021
August 31, 2020 ​September 3, 2020 ​July 1, 2022
 Upon approval, PERS Actuarial Services will contact you with next steps and further information.
 

Need help? Want more information?

If you have any comments, questions, or concerns, please email Side.Account.Legislation@pers.state.or.us.

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