Recently Adopted PERS Administrative Rules
Comment on Administrative Rules
PERS Administrative Rules (Chapter 459 can be found on the Oregon State Archives website.)
Proposed Administrative Rules
Employer Side Accounts
Section 3b of Senate Bill 1566 (2018) allows participating PERS employers that make a lump sum payment of $10 million or more that is not sourced from pension obligation bonds the option to select an amortization period of 6, 10, 16, or 20 years for that payment.
Currently, employer side accounts are amortized over 20 years. With the option of selecting a different amortization period, employer lump sum payments made under this new provision will require the employer to establish a new side account with the different amortization period. As with all lump sum payments establishing a new side account, they will also require an actuarial calculation. Accordingly, OAR 459-009-0084 and 459-009-0086 have been amended to reflect this new option and clarify its administration.
Note that staff continues to work on implementation of the other provisions in Senate Bill 1566 and anticipates additional changes to these rules. Therefore, we do not anticipate adoption of these as permanent rules until the October 5, 2018 meeting.
PERS Health Insurance Program Enrollment
A retired member is eligible to enroll in the PERS-sponsored health insurance plans (PHIP) within specific time periods outlined in rule. Two of those time periods are: 1) within 90 days of the retired member’s effective date of retirement; and 2) within 90 days of Medicare eligibility. While these standards work in most situations, there are certain circumstances in which a member can have a retroactive retirement date and thereby miss an opportunity to enroll in PHIP.
The effective retirement date for a disability retirement is the first of the month following the date of disability. A member cannot apply for disability retirement before the date of disability and a disability application takes, on average, six months to process. Therefore, the effective date of disability retirement is always a retroactive date. In addition, if a member who is eligible for service retirement applies for disability retirement and is denied, the member can apply for a service retirement with a retroactive effective retirement date of the first of the month in which the disability application was received. Similarly, members who are initially denied Social Security and are later approved will also have a retroactive Medicare eligibility date. Under the current PHIP enrollment rule, these members do not have an opportunity to enroll in PHIP due to the retroactive retirement date.
The amendments to the rule address these retroactive effective date situations and provide an enrollment window for eligible persons in these circumstances. If enrolled, PHIP coverage would only be prospective from the enrollment date.
Additional edits to the rule have been made to: update the name of the PHIP application form and clarify information requirements for a completed application; clarify that all Medicare-enrolled individuals (member, spouse, dependents) enrolling in PHIP are required to be in the same Medicare Companion Plan; and remove the requirement of a new application form from a surviving spouse or dependent who is already enrolled in PHIP at the time of a member’s death.
Draft Rule: 459-035-0070
Notice of Rulemaking: PHIP Enrollment
Work After Retirement Exception
By statute, a Tier One or Tier Two retired member who returns to PERS-covered employment may continue to receive PERS retirement benefits so long as they work less than 1,040 hours in a calendar year. If the retiree meets or exceeds 1,040 hours of employment in a calendar year, and their employment continues into the following month, PERS will cancel the member’s retirement and return the retired member to active membership status. This is sometimes referred to as the “1,040 Hour Rule” for Tier One/Tier Two retirees. However, some statutory exceptions allow retirees who work for certain employers or in certain positions to be excluded from the 1,040 Hour Rule. Retired members who meet the statutory requirements can work unlimited hours.
During the 2015 legislative session, House Bill 3058 (2015) established a new exception to the 1,040 Hour Rule for Tier One and Tier Two retired members who are re-employed by school districts or education service districts as teachers of career and technical education (CTE). Retired members who are certified by the Teacher Standards and Practices Commission (TSPC) as teachers of CTE may be re-employed and work unlimited hours in these CTE teacher positions, without loss of retirement benefits. The exception was scheduled to expire June 30, 2018, but House Bill 4012 (2018) extended the exception to June 30, 2023. The rule amendment reflects this sunset extension.
Draft Rule: 459-017-0060
Notice of Rulemaking: CTE Exception
OPSRP Member Vesting
Prior to passage of Senate Bill 1546 (2018), if an unvested OPSRP member became a judge and subsequently performed fewer than 600 hours of service as an OPSRP member in each of five consecutive calendar years, that member forfeited their OPSRP retirement credit at the end of the fifth calendar year. The statutes for OPSRP members specifically exclude judge members as “eligible employees” so they were statutorily blocked from using their judge service time to vest in their OPSRP membership.
Senate Bill 1546 allows judge members to use hours of service worked as a judge toward vesting as an OPSRP member. The modifications to the OPSRP vesting rule add hours of service as a judge member as a consideration when determining whether an OPSRP member is vested. The new statutory provision applies to judge members who retire on or after
January 1, 2018.
Disability Definitions and Eligibility
Modify rules regarding disability to update and add definitions; update specialist requirements; address effect of unemployment benefits in determining disability eligibility; clarify when PERS may request evaluations or exams; add physical capacity to independent evaluations; clarify periodic review standard; clarify burden of proof for OPSRP disability.
Rulemaking Schedule and Pending Rules Updated May 29, 2018
||Notice to Board
||Notice to Board
||Public comment ends
||Expected adoption date
|Disability Definitions and Eligibility
||CTE WAR Exception (HB 4012)
||Judge Member Vesting (SB 1546)
|Employer Side Accounts
|Employer Side Accounts