The recommendations of the Retirement Options Task Force are getting plenty of attention, during forums at UC Davis this week and in systemwide webinars Feb. 1 and 10.
President Janet Napolitano has asked for feedback on the recommendations by Feb. 16 to help inform the UC Retirement Plan "2016 Tier" proposal that she is expected to bring to the Board of Regents in March. The new pension tier would apply only to employees hired on or after July 1, 2016.
The new tier is part of last year’s budget agreement with Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature. The state is providing $436 million in additional, one-time funding over three years to help pay down UC's pension fund liability, while UC is making pension changes by establishing a 2016 Tier for new employees.
Further, as a defined-benefit plan, the 2016 Tier must include something that the existing defined-benefit tiers (1976 and 2013) do not have: a cap on the amount of covered compensation that can be used in calculating retirement income. The indexed limit must match what the state implemented on its own retirement plans in 2013. That limit is $117,020 in 2016.
Although most future university employees will retire with salaries below the new limit on covered compensation, the impact will be significant for those future employees who make more.
To address this problem, President Napolitano appointed a 13-member task force of faculty, staff and administrators, asking them to develop options for new plans or supplemental plans that would support the university’s continued excellence, and allow the university to remain competitive enough to recruit and retain high quality employees, and ensure the continued financial stability of the UCRP.
Under last year's budget deal, the university also can create new benefits for the 2016 Tier — and the task force has gone this route as a way to supplement the capped UCRP pension benefit for employees hired into that tier. The task force has recommended a 2016 Tier that would give employees the option of enrolling in a plan that is part defined benefit and part defined contribution, or a plan that is all defined contribution. (Retirement benefit changes for union-represented employees would be effective upon completion of the collective bargaining process.)
Forums: Jan. 25 and 28
The Davis Division of the Academic Senate has scheduled two forums for this week — both open to faculty and staff.
- Monday, Jan. 25 — 10 a.m.-noon, Lecture Hall 1341, Center for Health and Technology, UC Davis Health System, Sacramento
- Thursday, Jan. 28 — 10 a.m.-noon, MU II, Memorial Union, Davis campus
The Davis Division also has launched a Web forum where faculty and staff are invited to submit comments.
“The Academic Senate will be reviewing and considering comments through Wednesday, Feb. 3, for the Davis Divisional response (to President Napolitano),” the senate announced.
“The Academic Senate Committee on Faculty Welfare will take the lead on the Davis Division response and will include the overall consensus of the entire divisional Academic Senate, Academic Federation and Davis campus community.”
UCOP welcomes comments via UCnet. The Davis campus Staff Assembly, in the Jan. 22 Staff Voice, offered the UCnet address for comments.
UCOP webinars: Feb. 1 and 10
The Retirement Options Task Force chair, Rachael Nava, UC executive vice president-chief financial officer, will present two webinars:
- Monday, Feb. 1 — 2:30-4 p.m.
- Wednesday, Feb. 10 — 1-2:30 p.m.
Update Feb. 3: The second webinar, like the first one, will be on ReadyTalk (access code 5854736). There's also a number to call if you just want to listen in (or if your computer does not have speakers, or if you are having trouble with the audio portion of the webinar). For the Feb. 10 webinar, the call-in number has been changed to 877-718-7043 (no access code). The format calls for Nava to discuss the task force recommendations, and field questions from interested faculty and staff.