For a member in service who is employed in a full-time capacity, he/she will receive one (1) month of creditable service for each full month for which the employee receives regular compensation and remits the appropriate contributions to the Essex Regional Retirement System (“System”), with said service not to exceed one (1) year of creditable service in any calendar year.
For a member in service who is employed in a part-time capacity throughout his/her entire career, he/she will receive one (1) month of creditable service for each full month for which the employee receives regular compensation and remits the appropriate contributions to the System, with said service not to exceed one (1) year of creditable service in any calendar year.
For a member who has rendered membership service in the System in both a full-time and part-time capacity, the member shall receive full credit for all full-time service and prorated credit for part-time service based on the full-time equivalency of 150 hours being the equivalent of one (1) month of service.
For a member who is employed in a part-time capacity throughout his/her career but who either purchases past refunded service, or has transferred into the System previous service rendered in a full-time capacity, the member’s part-time service shall be prorated based on the full-time equivalency of 150 hours per month.
In the case of School Department employees whose full-time employment requires them to work from on or about September 1st to on or about June 30th, including but not limited to cafeteria workers, clerical and secretarial staff, teacher’s assistant and teaching professionals, such as therapists, said employees shall receive one month of creditable service for each full month the employee is receiving regular compensation, with ten (10) months being the equivalent of one (1) year of creditable service. School Department employees who are employed in a part-time capacity shall have their creditable service prorated in the same manner as all members of the System as set forth in this regulation.
The Board recognizes that certain School Department employees, including but not limited to custodians and secretaries, are required to work the entire calendar year, and in such a situation, said employee’s creditable service will be calculated based on a twelve (12) month year.
Creditable service for 10 months employees shall be based on 1,500 hours being the equivalent of l year, whereas creditable service for 12 month employees shall be based on 1,800 hours per year.
Any member purchasing past part-time service rendered shall have said service prorated base on 150 hours being considered a full month of creditable service. Notwithstanding the foregoing, any member who works part-time his/her entire career, and purchases part-time service rendered, will have all creditable service deemed to be full-time.Members of the System may only purchase and receive credit for past service rendered in a member unit of the System, or if the past service was rendered under the jurisdiction of another retirement system, such service may only be purchased if rendered in a temporary, provisional or substitute capacity, provided that the individual was excluded from membership in the other retirement system. All prior non-membership service shall be calculated with 150 hours being the equivalent of one (1) month of creditable service.
November 26, 2014:
The provisions of M.G.L. c. 32, § 20(5)(c)(2) state “[w]hen an error exists in the records maintained by the system or an error is made in computing a benefit and, as a result, a member or beneficiary receives from the system more or less than the member or beneficiary would have been entitled to receive had the records been correct or had the error not been made, the records or error shall be corrected and as far as practicable, and future payments shall be adjusted so that the actuarial equivalent of the pension or benefit to which the member or beneficiary was correctly entitled shall be paid. If it is determined that a member has contributed an incorrect amount to the retirement system, the member shall be required to contribute an amount sufficient to correct such error or the board shall pay an amount to the member to correct such error, as the case may be”.
The Board’s policy with respect to the correction of such errors, and the calculation of what constitutes the actuarial equivalent, consistent with the decision rendered in Herrick v. Essex Regional Retirement Board, 465 Mass. 801 (2013) and PERAC Memorandum #32/2013, shall require the Board to pay to the member or beneficiary, or in the case in which a member or beneficiary has been overpaid by the Board, the amount of the corrected benefit, together with three percent (3%) annual interest on the benefit paid or owed, as the case may be, computed from the date the error occurred to the date the error was corrected. In a circumstance in which the Board owes funds to the member or beneficiary, the Board will make a one-time lump-sum payment of the amount owed, and prospectively from the date of payment correct the error such that the member or beneficiary receives the corrected monthly benefit. In a circumstance in which the Board is owed funds by a member or beneficiary to correct an error, the Board shall in its sole discretion withhold an amount it deems appropriate from the member’s or beneficiary’s monthly benefit until such time as the debt is fully recovered. In a circumstance in which the Board is owed funds by a member or beneficiary to correct an error, and the member or beneficiary is no longer entitled to receive a monthly benefit, the Board will seek to recover any amount owed in the most prudent and practical manner possible, and reserves the right to maintain an action in contract to recovery [sic] any amount due from the member, beneficiary or the member’s or beneficiary’s estate.