WSR 06-03-097

PERMANENT RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

RETIREMENT SYSTEMS

[ Filed January 17, 2006, 9:01 a.m. , effective February 17, 2006 ]


Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.

Purpose: This amendment clarifies that once a PERS or SERS Plan 3 member chooses a contribution rate, or is assigned the base rate of 5%, the member may not change that contribution rate unless he/she changes employers.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 415-111-220.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 41.50.050(5).

Other Authority: RCW 41.34.090.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 05-24-047 on December 1, 2005.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Date Adopted: January 11, 2006.

S. J. Matheson

Director

OTS-8424.1


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 04-02-004, filed 12/24/03, effective 1/1/04)

WAC 415-111-220   How do I choose a defined contribution rate?   (1) Contribution rates: If you are a member of the Teachers' Retirement System (TRS) Plan 3, the School Employees' Retirement System (SERS) Plan 3, or the Public Employees' Retirement System (PERS) Plan 3, you are required to contribute from your compensation according to one of the following rate structures:

Base Rate Additional Rate Total Contribution Rate
Option A
All ages 5.0% 0.0% 5.0%
Option B
Up to age 35 5.0% 0.0% 5.0%
Age 35 to 44 5.0% 1.0% 6.0%
Age 45 and above 5.0% 2.5% 7.5%
Option C
Up to age 35 5.0% 1.0% 6.0%
Age 35 to 44 5.0% 2.5% 7.5%
Age 45 and above 5.0% 3.5% 8.5%
Option D
All ages 5.0% 2.0% 7.0%
Option E
All ages 5.0% 5.0% 10.0%
Option F
All ages 5.0% 10.0% 15.0%

(2) How do I make the choice? Under WAC 415-111-110, it is your responsibility to complete the correct form for choosing a contribution rate and submitting the form in a timely manner to your employer as directed on the form.

(3) Where do I get the form to make my choice? Your employer must provide the appropriate form to choose a contribution rate if you are enrolling in Plan 3 or transferring from Plan 2 to Plan 3.

(4) When do I have to choose? You must choose a contribution rate within ninety calendar days from your date of hire in an eligible position. However, if you are transferring from Plan 2 to Plan 3, you must choose a contribution rate at the same time you transfer. The ninety-day period does not apply to a member transferring from Plan 2 to Plan 3.

(5) When do contributions begin?

(a) Once you choose a contribution rate, contributions will begin the first day of the pay cycle in which you make the choice.

(b) If the employer advises the department that you should be reported into Plan 3 membership retroactively, the ninety-day period starts from the date it is discovered that you should have been reported. The department will decide which date to use.

(6) What if I work for more than one employer? If you are a Plan 3 member working in eligible positions for more than one employer, you may select a different contribution rate with each employer.

(7) What happens if I do not make a choice? Under RCW 41.34.040, you will be assigned a base rate of 5% (Option A) if:

(a) You are a new employee or changing your employer, and do not choose a contribution rate within the ninety-day election period described in subsection (4) of this section; or

(b) You are transferring from Plan 2 to Plan 3 and do not choose a contribution rate at the time of transfer. Contributions required under subsection (a) or (b) will begin the first day of the pay cycle in which you are assigned to Option A.

(8) Can I change my contribution rate?

(a) ((Except as provided in (c) of this subsection, once you choose a contribution rate or are assigned the base rate of 5% (Option A), you cannot change your contribution rate unless you change employers.)) If you are a PERS 3 or SERS 3 member, once you choose a contribution rate or are assigned the base rate of 5% (Option A), you cannot change that contribution rate unless you change employers. This rule is required by an IRS decision on the tax qualified status of PERS 2 and 3 and SERS 2 and 3.

(b) Each time you change employers, you must choose a new contribution rate within ninety days or you will be assigned a base rate of 5% (Option A). No contributions will be taken until you choose a rate or until the ninety-day period has elapsed, whichever occurs first.

(c) Each January, TRS Plan 3 members may change their contribution rate option by providing written notification to their employer as described in WAC 415-111-110(1).

[Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050(5) and 41.34.040. 04-02-004, 415-111-220, filed 12/24/03, effective 1/1/04; 01-15-038, 415-111-220, filed 7/13/01, effective 7/26/01. Statutory Authority: Chapters 41.32, 41.34, 41.35, 41.50 RCW. 01-01-059, 415-111-220, filed 12/12/00, effective 1/12/01.]