Active Member Information

Overview

Alameda Case Update
March 18, 2021

On March 15, 2021, the OCERS Board of Retirement took steps related to the implementation of the “Alameda” case (Alameda County Deputy Sheriffs Association et al v. Alameda County Employees Retirement Association and Board of Retirement of ACERA (S247095)).

The Board of Retirement approved a test and definition of normal working hours for the purposes of determining whether certain items of pay can be included in compensation earnable under the terms of the plan.

Additionally, the Board directed that updated policies and procedures be reviewed by OCERS’ Governance Committee on March 19, 2021.

It is anticipated that the OCERS team will return to the Board at the April 19, 2021 Board meeting, with a list of pay items reflecting the pensionable attributes as a result of the Board’s approved test definition of normal working hours.

It is important to note that OCERS must follow decisions made by California courts and lawmakers as it relates to legal findings that impact benefits. Specifically, the Supreme Court decision said that PEPRA amounted to a change in the law with respect to the pay items that may be included in the calculation of retirement benefits on and after January 1, 2013; and further, that retirement systems like OCERS have no authority or discretion to calculate pension benefits in a manner inconsistent with the CERL, as amended by PEPRA.

Supreme Court decision in Alameda Case

Overview

Summary Plan Description

Summary Plan Description

By reading the Summary Plan Description (SPD), you will find out what your benefits are, when they begin, and how their timing and distribution differ depending on various events in your life. The SPD provides disclosure of the terms and conditions of OCERS’ membership, retirement, disability, and death benefits available to members. It is designed to give you this information as simply and accurately as possible as of the date of issuance. 

Overview

Contributions and Contribution Rates

Employee contributions to the retirement system are mandatory. Your employer has elected to have your contributions made on a pretax basis. This means that the funds are deducted from your pay before taxes are calculated. The result is that your taxable income is reduced which in turn lowers the amount of taxes you have to pay.

The amount of contribution you pay depends on:

Overview

Military Reservists Information

If you are called to service or volunteer for service in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard (or any of their reserves), Army National Guard, Air National Guard and certain other types of uniformed services, you may be entitled to certain pension rights upon your return to employment.  In 1994, the Federal government passed a law called the “Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act,” commonly known as “USERRA,” to protect certain rights and benefits, including pension benefits of employees who are absent from work in order to serve in the uniformed