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Did you know that privatization of LSERS-eligible positions must be reported to LSERS?

It is state law pursuant to La. R.S. 11:1195.1 (Act 563 of 2006) and La R.S.11:1195.2 (Act 823 of 2008) that employers are liable for the portion of the unfunded accrued liability (UAL) attributable to LSERS-eligible positions that are privatized. If employers do not report that they replaced LSERS-eligible employees through privatization, contract, or outsourcing, then the cost is spread to all school boards rather than just the individual employer who outsourced.
 
If you are considering privatizing bus drivers, custodial or maintenance staff, contact LSERS for an estimate of the UAL cost.  Getting the UAL cost is an important consideration before proposing a fiscally sound solution for your school system.

If you have any questions, contact Larisa Ellard, LSERS internal auditor, at 225.925.7492 or via email lellard@lsers.net.
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(RET)  Annual Salary File

With the implementation of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) 67 and 68, the Louisiana School Employees’ Retirement System (LSERS) will begin testing the completeness and accuracy of all census data which includes reported salaries, contributions and enrollment information.

Starting August 15, 2014 employers will be required  to submit an annual retirement salary file containing all individuals paid by the employer, including payroll and 1099 payments.  To make it easier for employers LSERS will use the same data file layout as the one  currently used by the Teachers' Retirement System of Louisiana (TRSL).  The file submitted to LSERS will contain the same data as the file submitted to TRSL, but the file format will be a fixed length text file. The text file  will  be uploaded via  LSERSWeb portal located on www.lsers.net.  Once logged in, go to Forms and select Salary, Insurance and Retirement Uploads.

If you have any questions, contact Larisa Ellard, LSERS internal auditor, at 225.925.7492 or via email lellard@lsers.net.
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Membership Eligibility and First State Service

Members who enroll in LSERS on or after July 1, 2010 whose status with TRSL or LASERS was either refunded or retired at time of LSERS enrollment will be placed in LSERS' new retirement plan. The first state service date will reflect the member's enrollment date in LSERS.
 
The new plan provides for first eligibility for retirement at age 60 with at least five years of service credit.  Also, the accrual rate is 2.5 percent for each year of service at retirement and the employee contribution rate is 8 percent.
 
Members who were inadvertently enrolled in the old plan will be corrected by June 1, 2014. The only actions required of employers are 1) begin withholding 8 percent employee contributions including back contributions for this current fiscal year July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014 and 2) submit contribution correction reports (CCRs) for this current fiscal year. Prior year corrections are NOT required for those enrolled between July 1, 2010 and June 30, 2013.  LSERS will be notifying the 33 affected members and their employers.
 
If you have any questions, contact Carolyn Forbes, LSERS assistant director, at 225.925.6490 or via email cforbes@lsers.net.
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Legislative Update

The three board sponsored bills authored by Chairman Guillory have been well received and have completed the legislative process in a timely manner.  They are:
  • ACT 103 which provides a 1.5% COLA for all eligible retirees on July 1, 2014 to be paid from the Experience Account. Retirees must have attained the age of 60 and have received their benefits for at least a year to be eligible. 
  • SB 14 which provides for reamortizing all of the outstanding debt of LSERS with level dollar payments in order to reduce volatility of contribution rates to assist the school boards with their budgeting process in the years to come has completed the legislative process and been sent to the Governor for signature. 
  • SB 25 is LSERS “housekeeping” bill regarding administration of the fund.  This bill has completed the legislative process and will be forwarded to the Governor for signature. 
Other bills which we have been actively monitoring include:
  • ACT 23 by Rep. Pearson applies the monies remaining in our Experience Account after payment of the 1.5% 2014 COLA to an account which will be drawn from to help hold the employer contribution rates to their current projections in conjunction with SB14.

The two bills LSERS Board opposed, HB80 which would have restricted investment authority and HB86 which would have increased the threshold that must be met prior to funding the experience account never received a hearing in their original committee of referral.

The Joint Legislative Budget Committee met on May 14, 2014 and unanimously approved the 2014-2015 budget of LSERS.
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Members Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits

In your regular routine of reporting contributions to LSERS, don’t forget the possible variation for reporting employees who are receiving workers’ compensation benefits.
 
 If the employee was injured after September 8, 1988, the member has the option of paying employee contributions on a salary not to exceed the greater of the workers’ compensation benefits being received or the salary at time of qualification for workers’ compensation.  
 
If the member is receiving his or her full salary because of sufficient sick leave, reporting would be sheltered, the same as any other member who is using sick leave. However, if the member supplements workers’ compensation benefits with sick leave (not to exceed 100% of regular salary) or is not using any sick leave and his or her actual salary consists of any or all workers’ compensation benefits, the reporting to LSERS must reflect contributions as unsheltered.  The member also has the option to not pay contributions at all if only workers’ compensation benefits are being received.
 
The employer pays the employer portion on the actual amount on which the employee contributes. If the member pays employee contributions on an amount which is less than the full‑time rate at the time of qualification, service credit will be prorated. If the member chooses not to contribute at the time he or she qualified for workers’ compensation, then no service or eligibility credit will be obtained. The employee should sign a document waiving his or her right to pay retirement on the full salary, workers’ compensation benefits, or not at all.

 



Revised Fact Sheet and Form

The following fact sheet and form have been revised and are now available on LSERS website:

Fact Sheet 19 - Social Security & You

Form 2AC - Change of Address Authorization

And, as always, we appreciate and welcome any and all comments, as this helps
us identify ways to make improvements for you and provide better service to our
members and employers. Feel free to provide feedback and suggestions using
the LSERS Satisfaction Survey on our "Contact Us" page on the LSERS website.

Copyright © 2014 Louisiana School Employees' Retirement System, All rights reserved.


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