By Todd Spitzer, Chairman, OC Board of Supervisors
On Tuesday, in a 3-1 vote (Nelson voting no), the Board of Supervisors approved a pension reform proposal by Chairman Todd Spitzer to permit newly-hired employees aged 60 or older to opt out of a pension.
The Spitzer proposal applies to employees of the County and of the In-Home Support Services Public Authority, both of which are under the jurisdiction of the Board of Supervisors. The Spitzer proposal had its genesis in a pension system regulation that was ratified at the urging of then-Supervisor/now-Senator Patricia Bates.
“To the extent possible under state law governing County employee retirements, this is a step in the direction of moving employees into 401(k)-style retirement plans,” Chairman Spitzer said. “Until this proposal was approved, employees could not even choose to opt out of a pension plan. Now, new employees who are at least 60 years old will be able to make the choice between a defined benefit pension plan or a 401(k)-style defined contribution plan.”
The Spitzer proposal is the broadest possible move toward 401(k)-style retirement plans for County employees and IHSS Public Authority employees permitted under California Government Code Section 31552.
“I thank then-Supervisor/now-Senator Bates for her work obtaining approval of the regulations that made my proposal possible,” Chairman Spitzer said. “I will work to take this proposal to other government agencies throughout Orange County.”
In November, Supervisor Bates gained ratification for the regulations permitting employers like the County to allow its new employees aged 60 or over to opt out of the pension system.
Click here to read the staff report.