Bill to clarify retirement rules amended, advanced

A bill that would make several changes to laws covering administration of Nebraska’s state, county and school retirement programs was amended and advanced from general file Feb. 9.

Sen. Mark Kolterman
Sen. Mark Kolterman

LB700, introduced by Seward Sen. Mark Kolterman, would eliminate obsolete language, change job requirements for the Nebraska Public Employees Retirement Systems director and attorney and change duties of the Public Employees Retirement Board regarding retirement education programs that must be offered to members of all retirement systems under the PERB’s jurisdiction.

The bill would reduce from four to three the number of paid workdays that county and state plan members receive to attend in-person or live webinar trainings, which are offered during regular work hours. Kolterman said PERB created a YouTube channel and developed several online retirement education videos during the pandemic, broadening options for required retirement education programing.

A Nebraska Retirement Systems Committee amendment, adopted 36-0, would eliminate mandated early retirement incentive reporting to the Omaha School Employees Retirement System.

“We are taking away the requirement for the PERB and NPERS to collect the data from the early retirement incentive program … but that information still will be given to the Nebraska Department of Education, so the information is still available,” Kolterman said.

The amendment also added provisions of LB1043, introduced by Kolterman, which would codify current retirement practices and rules for some certified teachers in Nebraska.

Kolterman said the provisions would clarify rules for former members of the state’s school employee retirement plan who subsequently go to work for state agencies such as the Nebraska Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Correctional Services.

Finally, the amendment would eliminate a current option that allows a state school official employed by the Nebraska Department of Education to elect to remain in, or become a member of, the school plan or the state plan. The amendment instead would establish specific rules for such officials.

Following adoption of the committee amendment, senators voted 36-0 to advance LB700 to select file.

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