If your employer has elected the Rule of 80 option for your LAGERS retirement benefit, you have another option for when you can retire and collect your benefit.
Our guest blogger Katie Hunze from Jefferson County explains what is involved in a LAGERS on-site Pre-Retirement Seminar and how they can help employees understand their benefit.
Jefferson County hosted its first Pre-Retirement Seminar in April; open to all our employees. We were pleased to have 95 employees for our first attempt. Our vision is to ensure that whether retirement is five years or twenty-five years away, all employees should have a solid understanding of what they’re working towards every single day. We appreciate and value all of our public servants and want them to be able to enjoy the retirement that they have worked so hard for! Retirement benefits are covered during our new hire orientation but that can be somewhat overwhelming and this seminar allowed us to focus on the specific topic of retirement.
On May 23 LAGERS held our first Facebook LIVE event. Assistant Director Jeff Kempker answered the 5 most common questions we get from members on their LAGERS benefit, then answered your questions live. We had a great discussion about pensions and how they contribute to a secure retirement for many and how LAGERS is leading that effort.
My colleague Penny and I recently spent some time in Rolla to honor one of our long-standing members, Rolla Municipal Utilities employee Rosalie Spencer, who was celebrating 50 years with the organization with a lunch reception. Around 70 of Rosalie's friends, family and coworkers present and past were on hand to celebrate her accomplishment. "When I started here, I told them if they hired me I wanted to stay until I retire. And I am." Rosalie plans to retire at the end of April of this year, and because she has stayed for 50 years should be able to replace a sizable amount of her salary with her LAGERS benefit.
LAGERS retirees provide strength for their communities' economy by re-investing their hard-earned retirement benefits back into their communities. For example, in Boone County last year, there were 611 retirees who, combined with other LAGERS beneficiaries, received over 11 million dollars from LAGERS benefits. This income is used by retirees and their families to purchase goods and services within their community. This increases the assets and strength of local area businesses, who, in return, expand their businesses and employment opportunities. There is little doubt the bones of any community consist, in large part, of the businesses found within the community. LAGERS retirees provide the calcium for these bones by providing economic strength through their LAGERS benefits.
Adding or changing your employer’s retirement benefits is a big deal. At one point or another, every LAGERS employer had to decide to provide LAGERS coverage to their employees. While the actual process of joining LAGERS is fairly simple, figuring out how to fit LAGERS into an employee benefit package can raise some questions. Here are some of the common issues that arise when employers consider adding LAGERS and how some of our most recent members addressed them.