Legislation Introduced

March 27, 2017

Colorado's State Capitol building in Denver.As this newsletter went to print, the following legislation affecting Colorado PERA had been introduced: 

House Bill 17-1114: State Treasurer’s Authority To Access PERA Public Employees’ Retirement Association Information

Sponsors: Rep. Justin Everett (R–Littleton) and Sen. Jake Tate (R–Centennial)

The bill authorizes the State Treasurer, as a member of the PERA Board of Trustees, to review all PERA records or information. PERA could not deny the request based on the expenditure of staff time or the need to use outside resources to fill the request, or for any other reason. The State Treasurer would be prohibited from using the provided records or information for personal use. 

Status: Postponed indefinitely.

PERA’s Position: The Board voted to oppose this bill.

House Bill 17-1176: PERA Public Employees’ Retirement Association Retirees Employed By Rural School Districts

Sponsors: Rep. Jon Becker (R–Fort Morgan), Rep. Barbara McLachlan (D–Durango), and Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg (R–Sterling)

The bill modifies the current PERA working after retirement provisions for certain retirees hired by an employer in the School Division if the following conditions are met:

  • The employer that hires the PERA retiree is a rural school district (as determined by the Department of Education) and the school district has 6,500 students or fewer enrollees in kindergarten through 12th grade.
  • The school district hires the PERA retiree to provide classroom instruction, school bus transportation, or as a school food services cook.
  • The school district determines that there is a critical shortage of qualified teachers, school bus drivers, or school food services cooks, and that the PERA retiree has specific experience, skills, or qualifications that would benefit the district.

A PERA retiree who meets these criteria would not be subject to a reduction in his or her benefit if the retiree works beyond the current working after retirement limits as long as the retiree does not work for a PERA employer during the effective month of retirement. The retiree could not work after retirement without limitation for more than six consecutive years.

The bill also requires the employer to make full payment of all PERA employer contributions, disbursements, and working retiree contributions. The bill would repeal and sunset these provisions in 2028.

Status: In the House Appropriations Committee.

PERA’s Position: The Board voted to oppose this bill as it could add approximately $85 million to PERA’s unfunded liability.

Senate Bill 17-113: Cap Employer Contribution Rates For PERA Public Employees’ Retirement Association Employers

Sponsors: Sen. Tim Neville (R–Littleton) and Rep. Justin Everett (R–Littleton)

The bill requires that for the calendar year beginning January 1, 2018, and for each calendar year thereafter, the total of the employer contribution for any employer will not exceed the total contribution rates for the 2018 calendar year. The Amortization Equalization Disbursement (AED) and a Supplemental Amortization Equalization Disbursement (SAED) would also be capped at their amounts for the 2018 calendar year.

Status: Postponed indefinitely.

PERA’s Position: The Board voted to oppose this bill.

Senate Bill 17-158: Modify Composition of PERA Public Employees’ Retirement Association Board Of Trustees

Sponsors: Sen. Jack Tate (R–Centennial) and Rep. Daniel Nordberg (R–Colorado Springs)

The bill would change the composition of PERA’s Board by:

  • Eliminating one elected Trustee position from the State Division.
  • Eliminating two elected Trustee positions from the School Division.
  • Requiring at least one elected Trustee each from both the State and School Divisions to be at least 20 years from retirement eligibility.
  • Replacing the eliminated Trustee positions with three more Trustees appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate. (There are currently three Governor-appointed Trustees on the Board.) The additional appointed Trustees cannot be PERA members or retirees and must have significant experience and competence in investment management, finance, banking, economics, accounting, pension administration, or actuarial analysis.

The number of elected Trustees from the Local Government and Judicial Divisions would not change. The State Treasurer would remain on the Board, as would an ex officio Trustee from the Denver Public Schools Division.

Status: Postponed indefinitely.

PERA’s Position: The Board voted to oppose this bill.

Senate Bill 17-185: District Attorney Salary Compensation And PERA

Sponsors: Sen. Bob Gardner (R–Colorado Springs) and Rep. Matt Gray (D–Broomfield)

Among other provisions not related to PERA, this bill would allows the boards of county commissioners of the counties within a judicial district, in consultation with the District Attorney, to make a one-time irrevocable election to require an Assistant District Attorney to become a PERA member. If an Assistant District Attorney becomes a PERA member, the State would pay 80 percent of the PERA employer contribution and the county would pay 20 percent.

Status: Assigned to the Senate Finance Committee.

PERA’s Position: The Board has not taken a position on this bill

For the most up-to-date information on potential  legislation, visit www.peraontheissues.com.