Bill Summaries: S379 (2019-2020 Session)

Tracking:
  • Summary date: Mar 28 2019 - View summary

    Substantively identical to H 188, filed 2/26/19.

    Section 1

    Makes the following changes to the creditable service provisions of the Retirement Systems for Teachers and State Employees and Local Governmental Employees set out in GS 135-4 and GS 128-26, respectively, with differences noted.

    Removes obsolete and outdated provisions regarding prior service. Removes the provision requiring the Boards of each system to fix and determine by rules how much service in any year is equivalent to one year of service. Removes the provision permitting members to request a modification or correction of prior service credit by the respective Board.

    Modifies the calculation of the Armed Service Credit that can be purchased under the Teachers and State Employees Retirement System (TSERS).

    Removes the provision allowing a member to increase his or her creditable service to the extent of the period of time the individual became a teacher or employee to the date the individual became a TSERS member.

    Removes the provisions regarding prior service certificates designated as Class A, B, or C under the Local Government Retirement System.

    Enacts new provisions for North Carolina Withdrawn Service purchased on and after January 1, 2020. Caps creditable service purchased under the new provisions to five years. Provides parameters for the purchase amount and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the credit. Makes existing provisions regarding withdrawn service credit limited to purchases made on or before December 31, 2019.

    Expands the provisions regarding the purchase of creditable service previously rendered to any state, territory, or other US governmental subdivision to also explicitly include services rendered to the federal government. Limits the existing provisions to purchases on or before December 31, 2019. Modifies the calculation for the cost of the credit. Enacts new provisions regarding the purchase of creditable service rendered to the federal government or to any state, territory, or other US governmental subdivision for purchases on and after January 1, 2020. Caps the creditable service purchased under this new provision to five years. 

    Makes the provisions providing for the purchase of service credit for prior temporary State employment under TSERS applicable only to purchases on or before December 31, 2019.

    Deletes existing provisions and enacts similar replacement provisions regarding part-time service credit. Exempts from purchase eligibility (1) part-time service rendered as a bus driver to a public school while a full-time high school student and (2) temporary or part-time service rendered while a full-time student in pursuit of a degree or diploma in a degree-granting program, unless service was rendered on a permanent part-time basis and required at least 20 hours of service per week. Provides parameters for the purchase amount and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase.

    Makes technical and clarifying changes to the provisions regarding the purchase of creditable service for period of employer-approved leaves of absence when in receipt of benefits under the Workers' Compensation Act. 

    Amends the provisions regarding purchasing credit at full cost for temporary employment. Limits purchases to members in service with five or more years of membership service. Caps the allowable credit purchase to five years. Provides new parameters for the purchase amount and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase. Makes technical changes. 

    Deletes the provisions regarding the purchase of credit at full cost for local government employment under TSERS.

    Deletes the provisions regarding credit entitlement following a wildlife protector electing to become a member of the Law Enforcement Officers' Retirement System and transfer TSERS contributions.

    Makes changes to the provisions concerning purchasing credit at full cost for federal employment. Requires members to be in service with five or more years of membership service to purchase. Caps the amount of creditable service under the provision to five years. Provides new parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase. Limits the purchase of creditable service for periods of employment with public community service entities within the State funded entirely with federal funds to purchases by members in service on or before December 31, 2019.

    Amends the provisions concerning the purchase of credit at full cost for leave due to extended illness under TSERS, establishing new parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase.

    Amends the provisions regarding purchasing credit at full cost for maternity leave, parental leave, pregnancy or childbirth-related leave, or certain involuntary furloughs under TSERS, establishing new parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase.

    Makes the existing provisions regarding purchasing credit at full cost for probationary local government employment limited to purchases made on or before December 31, 2019. Enacts new provisions regarding the same purchases made on or after January 1, 2020, providing new parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase.

    Amends the provisions regarding purchasing credit under TSERS at full cost for service with UNC during which a member participated in the Optional Retirement Plan. Provides for credit purchase by any member in service with five or more years of membership service. Caps the amount of creditable service purchased to five years. Sets parameters for purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase.

    Amends the provisions regarding purchasing credit under the Local Governmental Employees Retirement System for employment not otherwise creditable. Provides for credit purchase by any member in service with five or more years of membership service. Sets parameters for purchase cost and assumptions. Allows for an employer to pay for the purchase. 

    Makes further organizational, clarifying, and conforming changes. Makes gender-neutral language changes. 

    Amends GS 135-1.1 concerning State boards or agencies charged with administering any law relating to professional, trade, or occupational examination and licensure which elects to become an employer in TSERS. Amends the contribution rate parameters. Provides for employees of such a board to elect to participate in TSERS and purchase creditable service for periods of employment prior to the election. Sets parameters for purchase cost and assumptions. Caps the amount of creditable service purchased to five years. 

    Amends GS 135-56(b), making the existing provisions regarding purchasing withdrawn creditable service in the Consolidated Judicial Retirement System limited to purchases on or before December 31, 2019. Enacts new provisions regarding the same for purchases made on or after January 1, 2020. Caps the creditable service purchased at five years. Sets parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows an employer to pay for the purchase. 

    Amends GS 120-4.15, making the existing provisions regarding repayment of contributions withdrawn from the Legislative Retirement Fund and System limited to repayments made on or before December 1, 2019. Enacts new provisions regarding the same for repayments made on or after January 1, 2020. Sets parameters for the purchase cost and assumptions. Allows an employer to pay for the purchase. Amends GS 120-4.16(a), requiring all repayments and purchases not made within the two years after the members become eligible to be calculated as specified, mirroring the calculations set out in GS 120-4.15(b), as enacted. 

    Amends GS 126-8.5, concerning discontinued service retirement allowance and severance wages for certain State employees. Requires employing agencies to deposit an amount, calculated as provided, in the Retiree Health Benefit Fund in cases where a discontinued service allowance is approved. 

    Amends GS 135-3(3) and GS 128-24(1a), now providing that a member only ceases to be a member of TSERS or the Local Governmental Employees Retirement System if the member withdraws his or her accumulated contributions, or becomes a beneficiary, or dies. 

    Provides that for all service purchases required to have been made by December 1, 2019, service purchase request forms received by that date will be accepted and processed.

    Section 2

    Amends GS 135-6(l) and GS 128-28(m), concerning the duties of the Actuary of TSERS and the Local Governmental Employees Retirement System, respectively. Requires the experience studies, and all other actuarial calculations required by each respective Chapter, and all the assumptions used, including the contribution-based benefit cap factor, to be set out in the actuary's periodic reports, annual valuations of System assets, or other materials provided to the Board of Trustees. Deems the materials effective the first date of the month following adoption unless the adoption resolution specifies another date. Clarifies that the effective date cannot retroactively affect a contribution rate. Allows the Retirement Systems Division to increase receipts from the retirement assets of the corresponding retirement system or pay the costs directly from the retirement assets with regards to payment for the administration of the actuarial investigation and valuation all assets and liabilities of the funds of the System (required by each statute at least once every five-year period).

    Amends GS 150B-1(d), exempting the Retirement Systems Boards of Trustees from the rule making procedures of Article 2A of GS Chapter 150B when adopting actuarial tables, assumptions, and contribution-based benefit caps factors after presentation of recommendations from the actuary. Lists specific tables, assumptions, methods, and factors the exemption includes but is not limited to.

    Amends GS 135-6(n) and GS 128-28(o), which directs the Actuary of each System to make an investigation and valuation of the respective System, to require the Board of Trustees to account for the results of the investigation and valuation and adopt any necessary mortality, service, or other tables, and any necessary contribution-based benefit cap factors for the System.

    Section 3

    Enacts GS 135-6(e1) and GS 128-28(f1) limiting the effectiveness of any decision by the Board of Trustees of either System related to the Contributory Death Benefit until the same decision has been made and voted on by the Board of Trustees of the other Retirement System. 

    Section 4

    Amends GS 143-162.1, exempting any call center operated under the Department of State Treasurer from the provisions of subsection (b), which requires state agency telephone systems to minimize the number of menus that a caller must go through to reach the desired extension, and allowing a caller to reach an attendant after accessing no more than two menus from the first menu during normal business hours.

    Section 5

    Amends GS 135-1 and GS 135-21, adding the defined term duly acknowledged. 

    Section 6

    Amends GS 135-8(f)(3) and GS 128-30(g)(3), regarding collection of contributions in TSERS and the Local Governmental Employees Retirement System. Adds a new requirement for the effective date of an interception of State funds for a contribution-based benefit cap liability to be the later of December 1, 2019, or 12 months after the member's effective date of retirement. Makes conforming changes. 

    Section 7

    Amends GS 147-68 concerning the duty of the Treasurer to receive and disburse moneys. Allows money to be paid out of the treasury on warrant or pursuant to an electronic transfer initiated by the State if there is a legislative appropriation or authority to pay the same, or there is an electronic debit initiated by the federal government or by the government of another state to satisfy a bona fide financial obligation of the State. 

    Section 8

    Amends GS 143-166.84(c), regarding eligibility under the Sheriffs' Supplemental Pension Fund (Fund). Amends the defined term eligible service as sheriff, to add notification by the retiring sheriff to the Retirement Systems Division after electing to have all sick leave accrued applied to service under the Fund instead of service in the Local Governmental Employees Retirement System.

    Removes the 2022 sunset on Section 5, SL 2017-128, which enacted GS 143-166.84(c).

    Effective October 1, 2019.

    Section 9

    Includes a severability clause. 


  • Summary date: Mar 27 2019 - View summary

    To be summarized.