Bill Text: NH HB248 | 2021 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Relative to the judicial retirement plan.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2021-02-18 - Retained in Committee [HB248 Detail]

Download: New_Hampshire-2021-HB248-Introduced.html

HB 248-FN - AS INTRODUCED

 

 

2021 SESSION

21-0254

10/11

 

HOUSE BILL 248-FN

 

AN ACT relative to the judicial retirement plan.

 

SPONSORS: Rep. Lynn, Rock. 7

 

COMMITTEE: Judiciary

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill revises the minimum age for retirement and the calculation of retirement benefits for judges under the judicial retirement plan, RSA 100-C.  The changes are applicable to new judges who become members of the judicial retirement plan.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

21-0254

10/11

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty One

 

AN ACT relative to the judicial retirement plan.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  Judicial Retirement Plan; Benefits.  RSA 100-C:5 through RSA 100-C:7 are repealed and reenacted to read as follows:

100-C:5  Service Retirement Benefits.

I.  Any member who has 15 years of creditable service and is at least 62 years of age, or who has 10 years or creditable service and is at least 67 years of age, or who has 7 years of creditable service and is 70 years of age may retire on a service retirement allowance, upon written application to the board setting forth on what date, not less than 30 days nor more than 90 days subsequent to the filing of the application, the member desires to be retired.  During such period of notification, the member may have separated from service.

II.  A member who meets the age and years of service requirements specified in paragraph I may retire on a service retirement allowance equal to 4 percent of the member’s final year’s salary multiplied by the number of years of the member’s creditable service; provided, however, that under no circumstances shall any service retirement allowance exceed 75 percent of the member’s final year’s salary.

III.  A member who has a minimum of 5 years of creditable service and who is not eligible for a retirement service allowance under this section may retire without a retirement service allowance at any time.  Election to retire under this section shall terminate the judge’s membership in the judicial retirement plan and shall irrevocably extinguish the judge’s rights under RSA 491-A:1 and under RSA 100-C:6 and RSA 100-C:7.  Election to retire under this section shall entitle the judge to payment of his or her accumulated contributions to the member annuity savings fund, together with any interest that may have accrued at rates determined by the board of trustees.

100-C:6  Disability Retirement Benefits.

I.  Regardless of a member’s length of service, any member who becomes permanently and totally disabled may apply to the board of trustees to retire on a disability retirement allowance not less than 30 days nor more than 90 days subsequent to the filing of such application.  Such application shall be granted provided that a physician or physicians designated by the board of trustees, after a medical examination of such member, certifies that the member is mentally or physically incapacitated for further performance of duty, that such incapacity is likely to be permanent, and that such person should be retired.  A member’s disability retirement allowance shall be 70 percent of the member’s final year salary for the period from the date of the member’s disability through the date when the member reaches age 70, at which time the allowance converts to the amount the member would have received if the member had remained in regular service until age 70 at a final year’s salary equal to the member’s final year’s salary on the date of the member’s disability.

II.  Unless the member and, if the member is married, the member’s spouse elects to waive this provision, which waiver must be executed in writing, a member who is married or who has children under the age of 18 at the time of the member’s disability retirement shall receive the following disability retirement benefit, which shall be of equivalent actuarial value to the benefit payable if this section were not applicable to such member: a reduced disability retirement allowance payable during the member’s life, with the provision that, upon the member’s death, the member’s surviving spouse, so long as he or she remains unmarried, or, if the member leaves no spouse, or at the surviving spouse’s death or remarriage, the member’s child or children under 18 years of age until they respectively reach their eighteenth birthday, shall be paid a disability retirement allowance equal to 50 percent of the disability retirement allowance payable to the member at the time of the member’s death; provided that, if the member dies before age 70, said amount shall be paid for the period from the date of the member’s death until the date the member would have reached age 70, at which time the benefit converts to 50 percent of the amount the member would have received if the member had remained in regular service to age 70 at a final year’s salary equal to the member’s final year’s salary on the date of the member’s disability.  In case there is more than one child, the compensation shall be divided equally among them.

100-C:7  Death, Spousal and Dependent Benefits.

I.  Unless the member and, if the member is married, the member’s spouse elects to waive this provision, which waiver shall be executed in writing, a member who is married or who has children under the age of 18 at the time of the member’s retirement shall receive the following service retirement benefit, which shall be of equivalent actuarial value to the benefit payable if this section were not applicable to such member: a reduced retirement allowance payable during the retired member’s life, with the provision that, upon the member’s death, the member’s surviving spouse, so long as he or she remains unmarried, or, if the member leaves no spouse, or at the surviving spouse’s death or remarriage, the member’s child or children under 18 years of age until they respectively reach their eighteenth birthday, shall be paid a retirement allowance equal to 50 percent of the retirement allowance payable to the member at the time of the member’s death.  In case there is more than one child, the compensation shall be divided equally among them.

II.  If a member dies in office, his or her surviving spouse, as long as he or she remains unmarried, or, if the member leaves no spouse, or at the surviving spouse’s death or remarriage, then the member’s child or children under the age of 18 years and until they respectively reach their eighteenth birthday, shall be entitled to the following benefit:  70 percent of the member’s yearly salary at the time of death for the period from the date of the member’s death through the date when the member would have reached age 70, at which time the benefit shall be reduced to 50 percent of the benefit the member would have received if the member had remained in service until age 70 and had a final year’s salary equal to the yearly salary of the member on the date of the member’s death.  In case there is more than one child, the compensation shall be divided equally among them.

2 New Section; Judicial Retirement Plan; Applicability.  Amend RSA 100-C by inserting after section 3 the following new section:

100-C:3-a  Applicability.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a judge shall remain subject to the provisions of this chapter that are in effect at the time the judge becomes a member of the judicial retirement plan.

3 Judicial Retirement Plan; Member Contributions.  Amend RSA 100-C:14, I to read as follows:

I.  All member contributions to the judicial retirement plan shall be payable only with respect to membership service, and picked up by the state by means of payroll deduction and shall be treated as employer contributions for purposes of Section 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.  The member contribution rate shall be fixed biennially by the board of trustees and shall be calculated so that the rate percent of earnable compensation deducted is one-half of the annual contribution requirements of the judicial retirement plan as determined in RSA 100-C:13, I.  In no year shall the member contribution rate exceed 10 percent of a member's earnable compensation.  [Once a member attains eligibility for a service retirement allowance equal to 75 percent of the member's final year's salary pursuant to RSA 100-C:5, said member shall not be required to have deductions made from earnable compensation for purposes of this section provided that the state contributions for such member under RSA 100-C:13, IV shall continue until the member's retirement.]

4  Reference Corrected; Retired Judges; Judicial Referees.  Amend RSA 493-A:1, IV to read as follows:

IV.  In the case of a retired full-time justice, in good standing, of the New Hampshire supreme, superior, district, or probate court who forgoes a retirement service allowance pursuant to RSA 100-C:5, [VII] III and who elects to take senior active status under paragraph I, the justice may serve as provided in paragraph II with compensation under RSA 493-A:1-b limited to per diem payment and expenses.  No person who retires under the provisions of this paragraph shall be considered a "retired employee," as defined in RSA 21-I:30, for purposes of eligibility for state-paid medical and surgical benefits.

5  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2021.

 

LBA

21-0254

12/31/20

 

HB 248-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS INTRODUCED

 

AN ACT relative to the judicial retirement plan.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [    ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None

 

 

 

Estimated Increase / (Decrease)

STATE:

FY 2021

FY 2022

FY 2023

FY 2024

   Appropriation

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Revenue

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Expenditures

$0

$0

$0

($710,000)

Funding Source:

  [ X ] General            [    ] Education            [    ] Highway           [ X ] Other - Judicial Retirement Plan

 

 

 

 

 

METHODOLOGY:

The New Hampshire Judicial Retirement Plan reports this bill would reduce State expenditures beginning in FY 2024.  The bill would only affect judges hired after the effective date of July 1, 2021.  The estimated amount in FY 2024 is based on an actuarial estimate from November 2018 and a projected payroll amount of $11,365,147 in FY 2024.  No savings will occur before FY 2024 as there will be no adjustment to the employer contribution rate until then.  The savings will be greater in future years as more judges are hired after the effective date of the bill.  

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

New Hampshire Judicial Retirement Plan

 

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