NHRS Legislative Update: Retained 2017 Bills

‘Working-after-retirement’ bill amended to reduce hours, add penalty; six other bills recommended to be killed, one to be held in committee

Dec 13, 2017
  • Legislation

For Immediate Release: December 13, 2017
Contact: Marty Karlon, Public Information Officer, (603) 410-3594; [email protected]

CONCORD, NH – New Hampshire House and Senate committees took action this fall on eight bills related to the New Hampshire Retirement System (NHRS, the retirement system) that were retained in committee during the 2017 legislative session, including a bill that would impact NHRS retirees working after retirement for participating employers.

Committee recommendations will be voted on by either the House or Senate in early January.

The following bill was amended and recommended as ought to pass (OTP):

House Bill 561: As amended in the Senate Executive Departments and Administration (ED&A) Committee, the bill would replace the current weekly limit of 32 hours for NHRS retirees working for participating employers with an annual limit of 1,040 hours per calendar year. Under the bill, retirees would have to wait 60 days from their effective date of retirement before they can work in a part-time capacity for a participating employer and retirees who exceed 1,040 hours in any calendar year would forfeit the employer-funded portion of their pension for 12 months. The amendment has an effective date of January 1, 2019.

The full text of the amendment is available at:
https://www.nhrs.org/docs/default-source/legislation/hb561-amendment-2017-2549s.pdf

The provisions contained in the amendment are based on recommendations made by the Decennial Retirement Commission, which met this fall to review the long-term viability of the retirement system and address several specific issues, including post-retirement employment. All commission recommendations are listed at:
http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/statstudcomm/committees/1343/reports.html

If passed by the Senate, the bill would be sent to the House, which could either accept the amendment, let the bill die, or request a committee of conference to reconcile the difference between the House and Senate versions of the legislation.

The following bills were recommended as inexpedient to legislate (ITL):

House Bill 366: This bill modifies the calculation of average final compensation for retirement system members who commenced service on or after July 1, 2011, or who had not attained vested status prior to January 1, 2012. (Recommendation of House ED&A Committee)

House Bill 369: This bill extends the period of amortization for the NHRS unfunded actuarial accrued liability by 10 years. (Recommendation of House ED&A Committee)

House Bill 413: This bill requires the state to pay 15 percent of employer contributions for teachers, police officers, and firefighters employed by political subdivisions beginning in fiscal year 2018. (Recommendation of House Finance Committee)

House Bill 421: This bill allows the Board of Trustees of the retirement system to revoke a member’s benefits if the member is convicted of a crime related to his or her public office or public employment which occurred during active service and for which the member resigned or was dismissed from employment. (Recommendation of House ED&A Committee)

House Bill 593: This bill grants Group II status to certain positions in the department of corrections. (Recommendation of House ED&A Committee)

Senate Bill 219: This bill grants a one-time additional allowance of $500 to NHRS retirees who meet all of the following criteria: (1) retired with more than 20 years of service; (2) has been retired for five years or more as of 7/1/17; (3) receives an annual pension benefit of $30,000 or less. (Recommendation of Senate Finance Committee)

The following bill was recommended to be referred to interim study:

House Bill 631: This bill establishes a cash balance pension plan for future state employees who become members of the retirement system and allows political subdivision employers the option to elect to participate in the plan. (Recommendation of House ED&A Committee)

Additional information on all 2017 NHRS-related legislation is available at: https://www.nhrs.org/about-nhrs/legislative-updates

About NHRS

NHRS provides retirement, disability, and death benefits to its eligible members and their beneficiaries.  The State of New Hampshire and nearly 470 local government employers participate in NHRS for their employees, teachers, firefighters, and police officers.  NHRS has approximately 48,000 active members and 33,000 pension recipients. NHRS administers a defined benefit plan qualified as a tax-exempt entity under sections 401(a) and 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code.

#  #  #