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Change is coming to your personal online account.

A new member portal is launching this fall. Until then, online counseling appointment scheduling and online retirement application submission are unavailable.

August 25 -- the online refund application process is unavailable.

Please call TRA at 1-800-657-3669 with your questions and for assistance.

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Dayton vetoes 2016 pension bill

MAY 31 – Gov. Mark Dayton has vetoed the 2016 Omnibus Pension Bill, which contained a provision to lower the retiree cost of living adjustment (COLA) from 2 percent to 1 percent for one year for TRA and from 2 percent to 1.75 percent for retirees in the Minnesota State Retirement System (MSRS) plan.

“These measures were part of sustainability plans that called for shared commitments among employers, current employees and retirees in order to secure the financial health and stability of the MSRS and TRA pension plans,” Dayton said in a letter to the legislature explaining the rationale for his veto.

Shared responsibility “remains an important principle in maintaining the soundness of Minnesota’s pension plans,” he added. “Unfortunately, [the pension bill] contains only one piece of the overall sustainability plans, placing sole responsibility for reducing plan liabilities on current retirees. It is not fair, and I cannot agree to it.”
More HERE

State Legislature passes
2016 Omnibus Pension Bill

MAY 23 – The Minnesota House of Representatives on Sunday passed the 2016 Omnibus Pension Bill (SF588) on a vote of 129-3. The Senate version of the 2016 Omnibus Pension Bill passed out of that chamber Thursday on a 61-1 vote, with Sen. Eric Pratt the lone no vote. The bill now goes to Gov. Mark Dayton.

Legislative Commission on Pensions and Retirement (LCPR) chair Tim O’Driscoll (R-Sartell) summarized the provisions of the bill, whose major changes call for the investment return assumption for Teachers Retirement Association (TRA) to be lowered to 8 percent, and for the cost-of-living adjustment for retirees of TRA to be lowered to 1 percent for one year and for the Minnesota State Retirement System (MSRS) to be lowered to 1.75 percent for one year beginning Jan. 1, 2017. (More HERE.)

TRA board OKs sustainability plan

After months of discussion, careful consideration and input from stakeholder groups, the TRA Board of Trustees on Dec. 16 approved recommending to the legislature a sustainability package to put the pension fund on track for full funding and a stronger future for the state’s teacher retirement system.

Using shared sacrifice as its guiding principle, the board settled on a package that increases employer contribution rates by 1 percent (from 7.5 percent to 8.5 percent) and reduces the 2 percent cost-of-living adjustment to 1 percent for five years beginning Jan. 1, 2017, and to 1.75 percent beginning Jan. 1, 2022.

Employee contribution rates remain at 7.5 percent. The COLA change would impact both current and future retirees (today’s active teachers).

The recommendations are subject to review and approval by the state legislature and governor. (More here.)

Changes to leave payment timeline

Legislation passed in May 2015 resulted in a change to when a medical, family or parental leave payment is due. The deadline to make the payment without interest is Dec. 31 of the year following the fiscal year of the leave, rather than by June 30 of the year of the leave.

If the payment is not made by Dec. 31, 8.5 percent interest will be charged through the end of the month in which payment is made.  Any leave payment made after June 30 of the year following the fiscal year of the leave would be based on full actuarial cost.

The change was necessary because one of the determining factors in the cost of the leave is the salary earned. The final salary information for the leave period could not be determined by the June 30 deadline. The Dec. 31 deadline will allow time for all salary to be reported, issues resolved, and leave costs calculated and sent to members on leave. It will also allow time for the members on leave to make arrangements for a rollover or other payment option.

Note that an extended leave still has a deadline of June 30 of each fiscal year of the leave. 

Additional News

Video: Pre-retirement beneficiary options
01.18.12

2016 Federal Tax Tables

2016 Minnesota Tax Tables

 

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