Information for New and Potential Employees
Important information regarding payroll deducted contributions for new employees or employees new covered by the Virginia Retirement System.
Important Notice Regarding Changes to Retirement Plans for Deputy Sheriffs
Changes are being made to the retirement plans for City Deputy Sheriffs effective January 1, 2020. The changes include:
VRS retirement benefits will change to the VRS Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits
Supplemental Retirement Plan contributions will change from 0% to 1.5%
It is important that you read this entire document if you plan to retire in the current year.
Details on VRS and Supplemental Retirement Plan Changes
On November 12, 2019, City Council adopted a resolution to provide Deputy Sheriffs the VRS Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits beginning January 1, 2020. The VRS Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits provides Deputy Sheriffs a VRS unreduced retirement benefit as early as age 50 years with at least 25 years of service or at a normal retirement benefit as early as age 60 years with at least five years of service. Early retirement benefits are available at age 50 with five years of service. The following chart summarizes the changes to VRS benefits for Deputy Sheriffs.
City of Alexandria Deputy Sheriffs will not be eligible to receive the VRS supplement to Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits because Deputy Sheriffs already participate in the City of Alexandria Supplemental Retirement Plan. The City’s Supplemental Retirement Plan provides a lifetime monthly pension whereas the VRS supplement is only paid until the employee reaches normal retirement age under Social Security (currently between ages 66 and 67).
Covering Deputy Sheriffs under the VRS Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits will increase City costs by about 10%. City Council also adopted a change requiring Deputy Sheriffs to share in the increased costs and contribute 1.5% more toward their retirement benefits. The 1.5% contribution will go toward the City’s Supplemental Retirement Plan. The 1.5% contribution deduction will be identified as “Sup Sheriff Ret.” beginning with the January 17, 2020 paycheck.
Effective Date of VRS Change
The change to VRS is effective January 1, 2020. However, to be eligible to retire under the Enhanced Hazardous Duty benefits Deputy Sheriffs must work at least one calendar month past this date and pay full VRS contributions for the month.
As of January 9, 2020, the change has not been programmed in the VRS retirement estimator or the retirement application systems. VRS is working with the City’s Pension Administration Division to incorporate the change into their systems as soon as possible. Pension will notify the Sheriff’s Office when the VRS estimator and retirement systems have been updated.
Any Deputy Sheriff planning to retire in 2020 needs to take action:
- During the period February 1 – 28 email email@example.com to notify Pension of your planned retirement date and to schedule an initial retirement appointment.
- Pension will discuss the steps you need to take now to be able to retire by the date you are planning.
Even though VRS is not yet able to provide a timeline for processing retirements in the current year, Pension needs to take some processing steps soon if you are going to retire in the current year.
Employees Need to Meet with Pension Staff One Year in Advance of Retirement
Employees who plan to retire should be meeting with Pension Division staff on two dates:
- One year before planned retirement date for a preliminary retirement appointment to discuss leave pay options and any divorce while employed with the City; and
- Four months before planned retirement date to formally apply to retire.
If you are planning to retire in the next twelve months, please start looking for the following documents that you will need to provide to Pension staff in order to apply to retire:
Proof of your birth which could be a copy of a passport, birth certificate, hospital birth record, or other record that Pension will accept;
Proof of birth for your spouse/other person if you will elect to receive a survivor pension;
Copy of divorce document and any agreements referenced in the divorce document if you divorced while working for the City; and
You will also need to provide a voided check as part of your retirement application.
Deputy Sheriffs May Also Participate in Two Voluntary Retirement Savings Plans
Deputy Sheriffs may also contribute to two voluntary retirement savings plans: 1) the City 457 Deferred Compensation Plan, and 2) the Payroll Deduct Roth IRA Plan. ICMA-RC is the City record keeper for these plans. Contributions to 457 are deducted from paychecks on a pre-tax basis which helps to reduce taxable income for the current year. Money will be taxable when withdrawn from the 457 Plan. Contributions to the Roth IRA plan are deducted on an after-tax basis. Earnings may not be taxed if the employee 1) has the account at least five years, and 2) withdraws money after age 59 ½.
Additional City Benefits May Be Available in Retirement
In addition to the benefits provided by the two retirement plans, Deputy Sheriffs may be eligible for City insurance benefits (health, life, dental, and vision) in retirement. The City Human Resources manages the insurance benefits. Please contact Benefits at 703.746.3777 for answers to questions regarding these benefits.
The Supplemental Retirement Board meeting scheduled for Thursday, June 11th will be held virtually. Please see the Supplemental Retirement Plan Board section below for details on how to participate in the meeting.
Seminars, Workshops, and Webinars
Webinars, Seminars, and Financial Planning Consultations with Steven Taylor
Steven Taylor, a Certified Financial Planner from ICMA-RC, and the Pension Administration Division will be providing seminars and individual consultations to employees throughout the year on a variety of retirement and general financial topics. ICMA-RC is the record keeper for the City 457 Deferred Compensation Plan. Due to the situations of
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Once you register for the event, information on how to access the webinar as well as a confirmation of registration will be sent to you via email.
Please contact the Pension Administration Division if you have any questions firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to obtain advance approval from your supervisor if you plan to attend a workshop during your schedule work hours.
For reasonable disability accommodation, contact email@example.com or 703.746.3887, Virginia Relay 711.
Retirement Benefits Summary and Benefits Guides
- Retirement Summary for Medics, and Fire Marshals
- Retirement Summary for Deputy Sheriffs
- Retirement checklist provides information on steps you need to take to retire from the City retirement plans with estimated due dates.
Virginia Retirement System (VRS) Employer Code 55200
The City provides retirement and disability retirement benefits under
VRS for regular, full-time employees. The VRS website, forms and publications may refer to other benefits that VRS provides to participating employers. However, the City does not participate in any benefits other than the ones described here.
Forms and Publications
- Applying for Service Retirement has instructions. The following forms needs to be completed to apply for a VRS retirement:
- Direct Deposit Form
NOTE:Employees must submit these forms to the Pension Administration Division.
Applying for Disability Retirement has instructions and the following forms that an employee needs to apply for a disability retirement from VRS:
- Explanation of Disability
- Physician's Report
- Employer Information
- Tax Withholding
- Direct Deposit Forms
NOTE: Employees applying for a disability retirement should contact the Pension Administration Division as soon as possible. Designation of Beneficiary
- Complete Part A on page one, but not Part B. In Part C, you may list individual beneficiaries or check box 8, but do not do both. If you choose box 8 you are requesting death benefits be paid according to state law. The instructions provide information how benefits are paid according to the law of Virginia. Mail your completed form to the Pension Administration Division in Room 1400, City Hall, mailbox 42.
- Contact Human Resources if you wish to designate, or change the designation of, the beneficiary of your City life insurance benefit.
- VRS Handbook
- VRS website View information on the Member tab. You are able to view your personal information and create retirement estimates when you log onto myVRS.
Supplemental Retirement Plan Contract Number 16741
- Plan Document as of January 1, 2014
- Plan Document as of January 1, 2009
Prudential administers the Supplemental Retirement Plan. Employees may visit the Prudential website to calculate retirement benefits and to view information on retirement planning.
- Prudential Website and creating pension estimates
- Retirement Educationprovides information on retirement planning and investing.
For help with registering and using the Prudential website, contact :
Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Supplemental Retirement Plan Board
The Supplemental Retirement Plan has a Pension Board made up of representatives of Deputy Sheriffs, Medics, Fire Marshals, General Schedule employees as well as City management. The Board oversees the investments of the pension plan. Meetings are open to the public. Click HERE to find additional details on the Supplemental Retirement Board.
Retirement Income Plan Contract 719118
- Plan Document
Update December 9, 2011 regarding transfer of accounts to the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan with ICMA-RC.
- Information provided at an earlier date regarding these changes:
- Letter from ICMA-RC regarding tax treatment of money rolled over from the Retirement Income Plan to the 457 Plan
- Attachment to ICMA-RC letter listing exceptions to ten percent additional tax on rollover money
- Internal Revenue Service Tax Topic 558 regarding tax on early distributions from retirement plans
- Fees 457 Plan funds charged January 31, 2011
- Fees Retirement Income Plan funds charged December 31, 2011
ICMA-RC Payroll Deduction Roth IRA Account Number 705691
The City is now providing employees an additional way to save for retirement. Employees who enroll in a Payroll Deduction Roth IRA account with ICMA-RC will be able to make contributions to that Roth IRA account using payroll deductions. For more details click on the following:
- Informational Video on the Payroll Roth IRA and ICMA-RC
- Details on the Payroll Roth IRA
- Brochure on the Payroll Roth IRA
Deferred Compensation Plan Plan Number 300832
The City sponsors the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan (457 Plan) with ICMA Retirement Corporation (ICMA-RC) to help employees save for retirement. A 457 plan is a savings plan available to state and local government employees that allows an employee to save through payroll-deducted contributions on a pre-tax basis. This means the contributions are deducted from the paycheck before federal and state taxes are withheld and the amount of taxable income is reduced by the amount of the contribution. Earnings also accumulate on a tax-deferred basis. Taxes are paid on contributions and interest when money is withdrawn.
For those just starting out, payroll-deducted contributions can be as little as $10 per pay period and up to the annual deferral limit for the year. The Internal Revenue Service determines the maximum deferral limit each year.
Log onto the ICMA-RC website, www.icmarc.org, to view your account information, information on the funds, and to learn about investing. You will need to use the City Plan Number, 300832, the first time you log onto the website.
To request an Enrollment Kit, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 703.746.3906.
Changing Your Contribution
If you want to change your contribution amount to the new deferral limit, or make any other change to your contribution amount, you will need to complete a 457 Deferred Compensation Plan Amount of Deferral Change Form. Complete the form with your new contribution amount and send it to:
Pension Administration Division
City Hall, Room 1900
Employees have two opportunities to catch-up on contributions that they did not make in the past.
- Age-50 Catch-Up: Any employee who turns 50 or older during the year is eligible.
- Pre-Retirement Catch-up: Available to employees who are eligible to retire within the next three years with an unreduced retirement benefit. The amount that you may actually contribute under this provision is determined by subtracting the actual amount you have already contributed from the maximum allowed. This provision is complicated for employees who wish to defer some or all of their leave payout at retirement.
For more information on the Pre-Retirement Catch-Up and deferring leave payout, contact:
Pension Administration Division
301 King St., Room 1900
The booklet 457 Deferred Compensation Plan Catch-Up Provision Packet provides more information on the Age-50 Catch-up and the Pre-Retirement Catch-up provisions.
ICMA-RC Representative and Investor Relations
The City's ICMA-RC representative, Kevin Parker, is available to meet employees to discuss the 457 Plan. She makes appointments to meet employees at locations throughout the City. To arrange a meeting, call:
Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
For answers to questions or assistance with using the website call:
Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Forms and Publications
- Forms and Publications (City Plan Number 300832)
Retired Employee Information
- Why am I receiving a W-2 if I am a City Retiree? This information applies to retirees who have City life insurance benefits.
- Virginia Retirement System (VRS) Retiree Web Page
- Contact Information for the City pension retirement and 457 Deferred Compensation plans.
- Contact the Virginia Retirement System (VRS) at 1.888.827.3847 Monday - Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. if you have questions on your monthly VRS benefit, 1099s (year end tax information), to change your address or tax withholdings, or to report the death of a retiree or beneficiary receiving a monthly pension from the Virginia Retirement System (VRS).
- Contact Prudential Retirement at 1.877.778.2100 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. if you have questions on your monthly Supplemental Retirement Plan benefit paid by Prudential, 1099s (year end tax information), to change your address or tax withholdings, or to report the death of a retiree or a beneficiary receiving a monthly pension from the Supplemental Retirement Plan (often called the City Plan). Prudential is the administrator for employees who retired on or after July 1997.
- Contact Principal at 1.800.247.7011 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. if you have questions on your monthly Supplemental Retirement Plan benefit paid by Principal, 1099s (year end tax information), to change your address or tax withholdings, or to report the death of a retiree or beneficiary receiving a monthly pension from Principal. Principal is the administrator of the Supplemental Retirement Plan for employees who retired prior to July 1, 1997.
- Contact Prudential Retirement at 1.877.778.2100 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. if you have any questions on the Retirement Income Plan for Deputy Sheriffs, Emergency Rescue Technicians/Medics, and Fire Marshals.
- Contact ICMA-RC at 1.800.669.7400 from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. to inquire about the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan. Employees had the option of participating in this plan by making payroll-deducted contributions.
- Contact the City Pension Administration Division at 703.746.3906 for further information on the retirement plans.
- Contact the Human Resources Benefits and Records Division at 703.746.3785 for inquiries on health and life insurance benefits. You may also find information on those benefits on their website.