Retirement Systems

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our office is open 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM M-F/ Closed between 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM M-F / Walk-ins 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM M-F

12015 Lee Jackson Memorial Highway, Suite 350
Fairfax, VA 22033

Jeff Weiler,
Executive Director

Comprehensive Plan History

1943

December

Fairfax County Policemen’s Pension and Retirement Board established (employee contribution rate set at 12%)

1944

March

The General Assembly of Virginia adopts the Police Retirement Act, which empowered the County to establish the 5 member “Policemen’s Pension and Retirement Board” – now called the Police Officers Retirement System (PORS)


1955

July

Supplemental Retirement System (SRS) established (employee contributions are set at 4% of salary with a 1.5% multiplier)

First meeting of 5-member SRS Board of Trustees


1967

May

First full-time employee hired to support the retirement systems

September

School Food Service employees added into SRS


1968

School Bus Drivers added into the SRS


1969

July

Park Authority employees added into the SRS


1973

Ordinary disability changed to 5 years for vesting


1974

May

Uniformed Retirement System (URS) established

SRS ordinance changed to include a pre-62 benefit

July

Firemen, Sheriff’s Deputies, Park Police, and Game Wardens moved from SRS into URS

Employee contributions are set at 4%, up to Social Security Wage Base, & 5¾% above

Disability retirees no longer convert to regular service from ordinary disability when reaching age 65 but do start drawing on own contributions

November

First meeting of 6-member URS Board of Trustees


1975

April

Retirement office moved to the 3rd Floor of the Massey Building


1977

April

Retirement office moved to 4101 Chain Bridge Road in Fairfax City

Crossing Guards added into the SRS


1978

September

Retirement office moved to 4020 University Drive in Fairfax City


1981

July

Plan B established for SRS (Employees contribute 5.33% with a benefit multiplier of 2.0%)

Plan B established for URS (Employees contribute 7.08%)

URS had several changes this year, including:

  • addition of early retirement option
  • Plan B URS, added normal retirement age to 25 years service in addition to age 55 with 6+ years of service,
  • Provided prorata credit for accrued sick leave (same as SRS)
  • Change in the retiree cost of living (COLA)

SRS had several changes this year, including:

  • benefit multiplier increased from 1.5 to 1.8%
  • increased pre-62 benefit to 1% of average final compensation
  • Change in the retiree cost of living (COLA)

PORS had several changes this year, including:

  • new automatic cola of 4% annually
  • raised normal retirement to 25 years or age 55 for future participants
  • raised automatic benefit amounts
  • changed what makes eligible time for pensionable salary
  • vesting rights given to members after 5 years of service

1982

June

The first full-time Retirement office employee retires


1985

January

Contributions to retirement on active payroll were no longer taxed

July

Economic development employees came into the SRS system (new with no previous service granted)


1987

January

Several changes were made to the SRS system:

  • Age limit for joining system removed
  • Employees can buy back service; after working 5 years.

July

All new retirees will have unused sick leave on payroll

Active employees who die while on the active payroll with at least 5 years service - spouse has option to refund or have monthly benefit

All 3 systems eliminated the mandatory retirement age of 70, as well as for eligibility for service-connected disability retirement

SRS reduced from 15 years to 5 years the eligibility criteria for a surviving spouse to elect a 50% retirement allowance

September

SRS conducted a one-time open season for Plan A members to switch to Plan B.


1988

May

First Retirement Executive Director hired

July

Added sick leave to calculation of final average salary

Employees working 20-hours per week offered one-time option to exit SRS (those hired after July must participate in SRS)


1989

September

Clinic room aides added into SRS and granted back service for retirement purposes if they were active and working at time of approval (otherwise no past service granted)

Retirement benefits become taxable by the Commonwealth of Virginia, effective with the 1989 tax year

1990

July

Hospitalization subsidies increased from $30 to $45

September

Active members (currently on payroll) must repurchase service credit before March 17, 1991 or they cannot elect to do so at a later date (new hires after September 17, 1990 who have refunded service must make decide to buyback within 1 year of reemployment)


1993

October

Retirement office moved to 10680 Main Street in Fairfax City


1995

July

All current and future retirees (all 3 systems) receive an additional 3% benefit increase


1996

July

URS made several changes for service-connected disabilities:

  • reduced service-connected disability percentage from 66 2/3%  to 40% and added severe service-connected benefit of 90% additionally
  • changed offset to apply only to social security disability benefits, not social security oldage benefits

December

URS members allowed one-time opportunity to change from Plans A & B to Plans C & D (all new hires enter Uniformed Plan D)


1998

July

Health insurance subsidy raised to from $45 to $60 for retirees aged 62 and older


2000

February

Several changes were made to PORS:

  • benefit multiplier increased from 2.5 to 2.8
  • current (at the time) retirees received 12% increase

Several changes were made to URS:

  • benefit multiplier increased from 1.8 to 2.0 for plans A & B
  • social security breakpoint was removed from Plans A&B (due to increase in multiplier)
  • benefit multiplier increased from 2.3 to 2.5 for plans C & D

July

SRS) pre-62 benefit becomes pre-Social Security benefit

Several changes were made to the health subsidy (for all 3 systems)

  • subsidy amount increases from $60 to $100
  • age to receive subsidy lowers to age 55
  • subsidy now earned for those on disability regardless of age

2001

February

The name of the Supplemental System (SRS) changed to Employees’ Retirement System (ERS)

The Police Board increased from 5 members to 7 (added a retiree-elected member and an additional BOS appointed member)


2002

March

URS pre-Social Security benefit added at 0.3% for Plans C&D and 0.2% for Plans A&B


2003

October

Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP) implemented for Police & Uniformed Systems

2004

January

URS retirees who retired before March 19, 2002 receive an increase

- weighted average of 12% (Plan A=23%; Plan B=15%; Plan C=5%; Plan D=5%; Survivors=10%)

July

Health Benefit Subsidy amount increased) for Medicare-eligible general County participants


2005

March

New ordinance language adopted regarding retired employees returning to employment (reemployed annuitants) for all 3 systems

July

Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP) implemented for Emloyees' Systems

New hires in the Department of Public Safety Communications (DPSC) are enrolled in URS

October

Existing DPSC employees who wish to move from ERS to URS must make election on or before September 1, 2005


2006

January

Medicare Part D implemented (also called Medicare prescription drug benefit)


2007

January

New pension administration software (PensionGold) goes live

July

PORS employee contribution rate lowered from 12% to 11%

Cap on PORS benefits (84% = 30 years) removed

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 64% to 40% (ERS & URS)


2008

April

New retirement website, redesigned in Web Content Management (WCM), goes live

July

Implemented online account access for members (Web Member Services or WMS)

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 40% to 30% (ERS & URS)

PORS employee contribution rate lowered from 11% to 10%

DROP Sunset Provision equalized for all 3 systems


2009

July

Remarriage clause removed from death before retirement benefits for current spouses (All systems)

Service Credit rules changed for the purpose of providing members with free service credit for periods of Military LWOP for ERS and URS


2010

October

Redefined actuarial surplus requirement for consideration of AdHoc retiree cost-of-living (COLA) adjustments

DROP Sunset Provision repealed in all three systems

August

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 30% to 25% (ERS & URS)


2012

January

AON Consulting presents results of retirement benefits study to the Board of Supervisors

 


2013

January

New retirement plans added for all new employees hired on and after January 1, 2013

ERS Plans C & D

Same as ERS Plans A & B, except for the following:

  • For normal retirement, an employees' age + years of service must equal at least 85 (called the Rule of 85)
  • earliest normal retirement age of 55
  • Pre-Social Security Benefit no longer added in DROP
  • Sick leave capped at 2080 hours in retirement or DROP calculations
PORS Plan B

Same as PORS Plan A, except sick leave capped at 2080 hours in retirement or DROP calculations

URS Plan E

Same as URS Plan D, except for the following:

  • Sick leave capped at 2080 hours in retirement or DROP calculations
  • Pre-Social Security Benefit no longer added in DROP

2014

January

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 25% to 15% (ERS & URS)

URS Board increased from 8 members to 10 (1 additional BOS appointed trustee and 1 trustee elected by the retirees of the system)

July

PORS employee contribution rate decreased from 10% to 8.65%


2015

January

Minor housekeeping changes were made to the County Codes for all 3 systems to make them more stylistically consistent, logically organized and freed of provisions no longer serving a useful purpose


2016

July

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 15% to 10% (ERS & URS)


2017

July

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits reduced from 10% to 5% (ERS & URS)

August

Retirement Systems office moves to 12015 Lee Jackson Memorial Highway in Fairfax County


2018

July

Social Security Offset for service-connected disability benefits eliminated (ERS & URS)

December

New retirement plans added for all new employees hired on and after July 1, 2019

ERS Plan E

Same as ERS Plan D, except for the following:

  • The social security supplement was eliminated
  • The 3 percent one-time add-on used in the benefit formula was eliminated
PORS Plan C

Same as PORS Plan B, except that the 3 percent one-time add-on used in the benefit formula was eliminated

URS Plan F

Same as URS Plan E, except for the following:

  • The social security supplement was eliminated
  • The 3 percent one-time add-on used in the benefit formula was eliminated
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