Amended in Senate April 21, 2015

Senate BillNo. 292

Introduced by Senator Pan

February 23, 2015

An act to amend Sectionbegin delete 20300end deletebegin insert 7522.30end insert of the Government Code, relating to public employees’ retirement.


SB 292, as amended, Pan. begin deletePublic Employees’ Retirement System: membership: exclusions. end deletebegin insertPublic employee retirement: contributions.end insert

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The California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013 (PEPRA) requires a public retirement system, as defined, to modify its plan or plans to comply with the act and, among other provisions, establishes new retirement formulas that may not be exceeded by a public employer offering a defined benefit pension plan for employees first hired on or after January 1, 2013. On and after January 1, 2013, PEPRA requires new employees of specified public employers, the Legislature, the California State University, and the judicial branch who participate in a defined benefit plan to have an initial contribution rate of at least 50% of the normal cost rate for that defined benefit plan, rounded to the nearest 14 of 1%, or the current contribution rate of similarly situated employees, whichever is greater.

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The California Constitution generally limits ad valorem taxes on real property to 1% of the full cash value of that property. The California Constitution exempts from that limit an additional ad valorem property tax rate for, among other things, indebtedness approved by the voters of the local entity prior to July 1, 1978, including pension programs.

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This bill would exempt a city or county that pays its pension costs with revenues from a property tax rate, approved by the voters of a city or county to make payments in support of pension programs and levied in addition to the general property tax rate, and that city’s or county’s employees from the above-described 50% contribution rate provision under PEPRA.

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The Public Employees’ Retirement Law (PERL) creates the Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS), which provides a defined benefit to its members based on age at retirement, service credit, and final compensation. Existing law defines “member” for purposes of PERL and excludes certain people from membership in PERS.

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This bill would make technical, nonsubstantive changes to these provisions.

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Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1begin insert

begin insertSECTION 1.end insert  

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begin insertSection 7522.30 of the end insertbegin insertGovernment Codeend insertbegin insert is
2amended to read:end insert



(a) This section shall apply to all public employers
4and to all new members. Equal sharing of normal costs between
5public employers and public employees shall be the standard. The
6standard shall be that employees pay at least 50 percent of normal
7costs and that employers not pay any of the required employee

9(b) The “normal cost rate” shall mean the annual actuarially
10determined normal cost for the plan of retirement benefits provided
11to the new member and shall be established based on the actuarial
12assumptions used to determine the liabilities and costs as part of
13the annual actuarial valuation. The plan of retirement benefits shall
14include any elements that would impact the actuarial determination
15of the normal cost, including, but not limited to, the retirement
16formula, eligibility and vesting criteria, ancillary benefit provisions,
17and any automatic cost-of-living adjustments as determined by the
18public retirement system.

19(c) New members employed by those public employers defined
20in paragraphs (2) and (3) of subdivision (i) of Section 7522.04,
21the Legislature, the California State University, and the judicial
22branch who participate in a defined benefit plan shall have an
23initial contribution rate of at least 50 percent of the normal cost
24rate for that defined benefit plan, rounded to the nearest quarter
P3    1of 1 percent, unless a greater contribution rate has been agreed to
2pursuant to the requirements in subdivision (e). This contribution
3shall not be paid by the employer on the employee’s behalf.

4(d) Notwithstanding subdivision (c), once established, the
5employee contribution rate described in subdivision (c) shall not
6 be adjusted on account of a change to the normal cost rate unless
7the normal cost rate increases or decreases by more than 1 percent
8of payroll above or below the normal cost rate in effect at the time
9the employee contribution rate is first established or, if later, the
10normal cost rate in effect at the time of the last adjustment to the
11employee contribution rate under this section.

12(e) Notwithstanding subdivision (c), employee contributions
13may be more than one-half of the normal cost rate if the increase
14has been agreed to through the collective bargaining process,
15subject to the following conditions:

16(1) The employer shall not contribute at a greater rate to the
17plan for nonrepresented, managerial, or supervisory employees
18than the employer contributes for other public employees, including
19represented employees, of the same employer who are in related
20retirement membership classifications.

21(2) The employer shall not increase an employee contribution
22rate in the absence of a memorandum of understanding that has
23been collectively bargained in accordance with applicable laws.

24(3) The employer shall not use impasse procedures to increase
25an employee contribution rate above the rate required by this

27(f) If the terms of a contract, including a memorandum of
28understanding, between a public employer and its public
29employees, that is in effect on January 1, 2013, would be impaired
30by any provision of this section, that provision shall not apply to
31the public employer and public employees subject to that contract
32until the expiration of that contract. A renewal, amendment, or
33any other extension of that contract shall be subject to the
34requirements of this section.

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35(g) This section does not apply to a public employer and its
36public employees if the public employer is a city or county that
37pays its pension program costs with revenues derived from a
38property tax rate, approved by the voters of a city or county to
39make payments in support of pension programs and levied in
P4    1addition to the property tax rate limited by subdivision (a) of
2Section 1 of Article XIII A of the California Constitution.

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Section 20300 of the Government Code is
4amended to read:



The following persons are excluded from membership
6in this system:

7(a) Inmates of state or public agency institutions who are allowed
8compensation for the service they are able to perform.

9(b) Independent contractors who are not employees.

10(c) Persons employed as student assistants in the state colleges
11and persons employed as student aides in the special schools of
12the State Department of Education and in the public schools of the

14(d) Persons employed as teacher assistants pursuant to Section
1544926 of the Education Code.

16(e) Participants, other than staff officers and employees, in the
17California Conservation Corps.

18(f) Persons employed as participants in a program of, and whose
19wages are paid in whole or in part by federal funds in accordance
20with, Section 1501 et seq. of Title 29 of the United States Code.
21This subdivision does not apply with respect to persons employed
22in job classes that provide eligibility for patrol or safety
23membership or to the career staff employees of an employer.

24(g) All persons who are members in a teachers’ retirement
25system, as to the service in which they are members of a teachers’
26retirement system.

27(h) Except as otherwise provided in this part, persons rendering
28professional legal services to a city, other than the person holding
29the office of city attorney, the office of assistant city attorney, or
30an established position of deputy city attorney.

31(i) A person serving the university as a teacher in university
32extension, whose compensation for that service is established on
33the basis of class enrollment, either actual or estimated, with respect
34to that service.

35(j) A person serving a California State University as a teacher
36in extension service, whose compensation for that service is
37established on the basis of class enrollment, either actual or
38estimated, with respect to that service.

39(k) A teacher or academic employee of the university or any
40California State University who is otherwise fully employed and
P5    1who serves as a teacher or in an academic capacity in a summer
2session or intersession, for which he or she receives compensation
3specifically attributable to that service in summer session or
4intersession, with respect to that service.

5(l) A person who is employed under the California Senate
6Fellows, the Assembly Fellowship, the Judicial Administration
7Fellowship, or the Executive Fellowship programs.

8(m) Board members of the State Compensation Insurance Fund,
9including those appointed by the Governor.

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