Previous Year News

SDCERS Receives Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for 15th Consecutive Year

The Government Financial Officers Association (“GFOA”) has awarded SDCERS the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for SDCERS’ 2022 Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (“ACFR”) and Popular Annual Financial Report (“PAFR”). This is the 15th year in a row SDCERS has received this recognition! The GFOA is a non-profit professional association serving approximately 15,000 government finance professionals. SDCERS’ ACFR and PAFR were judged by an impartial panel and deemed to have met the high standards of the certificate program, including demonstrating an effective means to disclose and clearly communicate SDCERS’ financial story and to motivate Members and the public to read the ACFR and PAFR.  This award is the highest form of recognition in the area of government accounting and financial reporting. It represents a significant accomplishment by a governmental agency and its management. SDCERS’ award-winning ACFRs and PAFRs are available online and can be viewed here. More...

SDCERS' IT Department Receives 2023 MISAC Quality IT Practices Award

Date: Dec 01, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS is proud to announce it has received the Municipal Information System Association of California (MISAC) Quality Information Technology Practices Award for the sixth year in a row. MISAC is a collaborative organization of California local government IT professionals with the goal of promoting leadership, information sharing, and access to resources to enhance local government services and effectiveness. Membership includes cities, towns, public safety, special districts, and other local governmental agencies/districts.  The award qualifications for 2023 changed to follow the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) SP800-53P standards. The NIST standards is a set of recommended security and privacy controls followed for federal information systems and organizations. Agencies respond using the control catalog covering the standards of low, moderate and high. Those agencies that achieve a minimum of 80% of the controls are recognized with the MISAC Quality in IT Practices award.    Receiving MISAC Quality IT Practices Award is an honor and tribute to the dedication and performance of SDCERS’ IT staff and contractors.   More...

City Retirees: Notice Regarding 2024 Medicare Part B Premiums

Date: Nov 30, 2023 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

If you are a City retiree currently receiving health reimbursements from SDCERS for Medicare Part B premiums, you should have recently received a letter in the mail from SDCERS. The standard Medicare Part B premiums are increasing from $164.90 to $174.70 per month, beginning in January 2024.Please submit the 2024 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS as soon as possible, confirming the changes to your Medicare Part B premium. Note that if you are paying your premiums out of pocket, you will not have a Benefit Verification Letter, and instead will need to provide SDCERS with the statement you should receive from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). If your premium has not changed, you do not need to submit anything.   To obtain your 2024 Benefit Verification Letter, visit www.ssa.gov, and then either sign in or sign up for a personal “my Social Security” account. Once you’ve accessed your account, follow the instructions to download your Benefit Verification Letter. You can also call your local Social Security office. Please do not contact SDCERS for help accessing this letter, as SDCERS staff will be unable to assist.   We are anticipating a large number of submissions this year due to the premium change. If you submit all of the proper paperwork to SDCERS and it is received by our office on or before January 10, 2024, we will do our best to have the updated premium amount reimbursement reflected on your January 2024 pension benefit payment. If your paperwork is received after this date, or if we were unable to process your paperwork in time, then the adjusted reimbursement amount will be included in the following payroll cycle, assuming all required documentation is received.   You may submit your 2024 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS in the following ways:*E-mail a copy (in PDF format) to: health@sdcers.orgFax a copy to: (858) 581-5314Mail a copy to: 401 West A Street, Suite 800, San Diego, CA 92101 Attn: Health *IMPORTANT: Email is the fastest way to provide SDCERS with your documents. However, if you submit your Benefit Verification Letter (and/or any other health-related paperwork) via email, please be sure any attachments are in PDF format only. You should receive an automated confirmation email within 24 hours of your email submission; however, if you do not receive this confirmation email, it does not necessarily mean we didn’t receive your email. First, please check your spam or junk folder to see if the confirmation email ended up there.  Please refrain from calling us to confirm that your Benefit Verification Letter has been received. The SDCERS staff who answer the phones are also processing the documents, and additional phone calls may cause delays. If you believe you provided us with timely documentation, but are not reimbursed the increased amount in your January 2024 pension payment, then please contact our Retiree Health Team at (619) 525-3600 or health@sdcers.org in February.   More...

DROP Interest Rates for CY 2024

Date: Nov 03, 2023 Categories: Board, DROP, News Articles, Press Release

At today’s meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration voted to approve staff’s recommended DROP account and DROP annuity interest rates for the next calendar year – meaning these rates will be effective January 1, 2024. The DROP accountrate is the interest rate used by SDCERS while a Member is in DROP and the DROP annuityrate is the interest rate used by SDCERS to annuitize the DROP monies of a Member who has exited DROP and selected the DROP annuity option. These rates are calculated annually using publicly available indexes as of September 30th of each year. (See Board Rule 6.10(c) and 6.40(b), and the SDCERS CEO’s memorandum presented at the January 2022 Board meeting for more information about how these rates are calculated.)   Therefore, effective January 1, 2024, the annual DROP account interest rate (compounded quarterly) will increase significantly to 4.2%, compared to the current rate of 2.5%. This interest rate will be compounded quarterly and applied to all active DROP participants’ accounts as long as the participant is actively employed by their plan sponsor on the last day of each quarter. This rate is subject to change annually, which means a DROP participant’s account may receive a different interest rate every year during their participation period.   The DROP annuity interest rate will increase to 4.6%, compared to the current rate of 2.9%. This interest rate will be applied to the funds remaining in a DROP retiree’s account when they exit DROP, if the retiree chooses to annuitize all or part of their DROP account, and it will be factored into the calculation of their monthly DROP annuity payment. Please note that the retiree’s DROP exit date must be during calendar year 2024 in order for the 4.6% annuity factor to apply.   Unlike the DROP account interest rate, the DROP annuity rate will not change for an individual member – the rate that is in effect when a member exits DROP is the rate that will be applied to their annuity calculation, regardless of whether or not the DROP annuity rate changes in future years. Therefore, when you are getting close to your DROP retirement date, your decision to exit DROP before or after the New Year may be affected by the Board’s decision to increase or decrease the DROP annuity interest rate. However, if you do not plan to annuitize your DROP account upon exiting DROP, then the DROP annuity rate changes will not affect you. Click here to review your options regarding how you can receive the funds in your DROP account when you exit DROP.  Please attend a DROP Entry webinar if you are planning to enter DROP soon! As of the date of this article, the November 27th DROP entry webinar from noon – 2:00 p.m. has 20 open spots – please use the following link to register: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/9081807050801528666. There will be another webinar in December that has not yet been scheduled. If you are within 3 months of your DROP entry date and are unable to register for either the November or December webinars, please contact SDCERS and let us know.  Please attend a DROP Exit webinar if you are nearing your target DROP exit date! The next DROP exit webinar will be November 28th from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., and you can register using the following link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7587965465274533643. There will be another DROP exit webinar in December, but it has not yet been scheduled. If you are within 3 months of your DROP exit and are unable to register for either the November or December webinars, please contact SDCERS and let us know.   If you are considering entering or exiting DROP soon, you must begin the process by first going to your Member Portal account and clicking on either “Online Applications” or “DROP Retirement Application” (whichever is applicable to you) from the left menu, under Tools. Review this information, make your selections, and submit the initial application online. Once received, you will be contacted by an SDCERS staff member to schedule your personal counseling appointment. At your appointment, you can ask questions and make any changes to your application. Your electronic application is not final and you have not officially scheduled your DROP entry or exit date until you’ve submitted your signed application signature page, which will be given to you by your retirement counselor during or after your appointment.   More...

SDCERS Board Approves Annual Supplemental Benefit Payment for 2023

At its November 3, 2023 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved payment of the Annual Supplemental Benefit for eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries. The Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid in years when the fund’s investment earnings are sufficient to qualify, according to a set formula defined in the plan documents.   In addition, the Corbett Settlement Increase (“Corbett benefit”) is paid to eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries in years that the Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid. If you are eligible for one or both of these benefits, payment will be included in your November 2023 monthly pension payment.   The eligibility requirements for the Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett benefit are described in our FAQs under “Annual Supplemental Benefit, Corbett, COLA, COL Annuity.” Here, you will also find a description of how these benefits are calculated.   In addition to the requirements outlined in the FAQ’s, in order to be eligible for the 2023 Annual Supplemental Benefit, a retiree or continuance beneficiary must have been (1) alive, and (2) eligible to receive a monthly pension benefit payment on October 1, 2023. If an eligible retiree died on or after October 1, 2023, the retiree’s continuance beneficiary is not eligible for their own Annual Supplemental Benefit this year. In this case, the retiree’s Annual Supplemental Benefit payment will be included in the $2,000 Retiree Death Benefit and Other Payable Monies, which is paid to the beneficiary(ies) designated to receive that death benefit. More...

November 2023 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Oct 27, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled November 2023 Board and Committee meetings in our usual Board Meeting Room on the 3rd floor of our downtown office building – located at 401 West A Street, Suite 300.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely (except as specified below) – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the November 2023 meetings here.   However, as always, you can watch the Business & Governance Committee and/or Board of Administration meeting live by going to the agendas page (linked above) at the start time of the meeting and clicking the “Live Media” button next to the corresponding meeting, which will display once the meeting begins.Meeting Dates November 2nd –         Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting at 12:30 p.m. PST   November 3rd –          Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment by attending the relevant meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins.   More...

Calendar Year 2024 City Retiree Health Open Enrollment

Retiree health open enrollment for City of San Diego retirees will run from November 1st through November 30th. The calendar year 2024 City retiree health booklets have been mailed out to all eligible City retirees and beneficiaries, and an electronic version of the booklet is also available here. You can also download and complete enrollment forms by visiting the City Retiree Health page. After you’ve completed an enrollment (or disenrollment) form, you must send it to SDCERS by November 30th – we prefer you scan your forms and email them as a PDF attachment to health@sdcers.org, but you may also fax them to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our offices at:   SDCERS – Health Division 401 West A Street, Suite 800 San Diego, CA 92101   As always, if you do not wish to make any changes to your current healthcare coverage, you do not need to take any action during open enrollment and your coverage will remain the same. There are no new plans this year and no significant changes to existing plans in terms of coverage, with the exception of the SCAN Medicare plan – please see this article for more information about upcoming changes to this plan.   SDCERS will not be holding any in-person open enrollment events. However, SDCERS will participate in the Retiree Help Day hosted by SDPEBA (San Diego Public Employee Benefit Association), which will be held on November 1st, beginning at 10:00 a.m. (PST). You can register for SDPEBA’s Retiree Help Day here.   If you are comparing different plans and trying to decide which is best for you, don’t forget about CareCounsel! CareCounsel Member Care Specialists are available for your healthcare inquiries and concerns. You can call them at (888) 227-3334 or e-mail staff@carecounsel.com Monday – Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. CareCounsel also provides helpful videos on their website that may answer your questions about Medicare, here: https://carecounsel.com/medicare.html.   SDCERS’ Call Center is open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST), at (619) 525-3600 and (800) 774-4977. Remember that if you need to come into our physical offices for any reason related to retiree health, please ensure you come in on a Tuesday or Thursday, between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (PST). Please be patient with our hard-working staff; we are working with limited resources and call wait times may be longer than usual due to an expected increase in health-related calls. You can also submit electronic inquiries through our Contact Us page. More...

SDCERS' 2023 Annual Membership Meeting - You're Invited!

Date: Oct 11, 2023 Categories: Events, News Articles, Press Release, Retirement Resources

SDCERS’ 2023 Annual Membership Meeting will take place in person on October 27th at the Balboa Park Club Ballroom.   The theme of the meeting is: "We nurture the seeds of retirement so you can enjoy the harvest." Join us for informative presentations addressing your retirement system administrator, learn about the security of your future pension benefits, and win candy prizes!   The presenters will include SDCERS’ Board President, Paul Kaufmann; SDCERS’ CEO, Gregg Rademacher; SDCERS’ Deputy CEO, Marcelle Voorhies Rossman; SDCERS’ Chief Investment Officer, Carina Coleman; and SDCERS’ Director of Member Services, Cynthia Queen.Directions: Balboa Park Club Ballroom, 2144 Pan American Road West. Enter Balboa Park from Park Boulevard and turn west on Presidents Way. The Ballroom is located in the South Palisades area of the park, just north of Puppet Theater. All stakeholders are invited to attend, and no RSVP or registration is required. The meeting will also be video recorded and uploaded to our YouTube channel as soon as it is available. We hope to see you all at this year's meeting!   More...

2024 City Retiree Health Open Enrollment & Changes to SCAN Health Plan

Date: Sep 27, 2023 Categories: Health, News Articles, Open Enrollment, Press Release

City Retirees: 2024 City Retiree Health Open Enrollment will begin on November 1, 2023 and end November 30, 2023. The 2024 Retiree Health Booklets will be mailed in late October. This booklet provides details for all healthcare plans offered through the City of San Diego and the San Diego Public Employee Benefit Association (SDPEBA). You can also access an electronic version of this booklet on the City Retiree Health page. The electronic version will be available no later than October 30, 2023.IMPORTANT: Significant changes are coming to the City's SCAN retiree health plan.   Effective January 1, 2024, Scripps Clinics and Scripps Coastal will no longer be part of the SCAN Health Plan provider network.   The Scripps relationship will continue for the following facilities:Mercy Physicians Medical GroupScripps Physicians Medical GroupPrimary Care Associates of CaliforniaProspect Medical GroupOptum/PCAMGGreater Tri-Cities IPA (with some minimal changes)If you are currently enrolled in the SCAN health plan, you should receive a letter in the mail from SCAN and a separate letter from SDCERS regarding these changes. You will also find the most up-to-date Primary Care Physician listings on the SCAN Health Plan website at www.scanhealthplan.com. If you choose to remain in the SCAN health plan for plan year 2024 and your current provider is associated with Scripps Clinic or Scripps Coastal, you will need to select a new provider. Alternatively, you can choose to enroll in a different City-sponsored Medicare plan.    For assistance with plan comparisons and help making smart decisions when choosing providers, please remember to utilize the City’s free retiree health resource, CareCounsel. You can reach CareCounsel at 888-227-3334 or visit their website at www.carecounsel.com.   If you have any questions, you can contact SDCERS’ Call Center at (619) 525-3600, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. PST. However, as this is a significant change to retiree health and open enrollment is about to begin, we anticipate a higher than usual call volume over the next several months. If your question is not urgent, we encourage you to submit your request electronically via the Contact Us page. SDCERS staff will generally respond to electronic inquiries within one business day. If you need to come into our physical offices for any reason related to retiree health, please remember to come in on a Tuesday or Thursday and we recommend calling ahead of time to ensure an appropriate staff member will be available to assist you. More...

SDCERS' Final Investment Return for FY 2023

Date: Sep 15, 2023 Categories: Investments, News Articles, Press Release

At the September Board meeting, SDCERS reported a net return of 5.2% for Fiscal Year 2023. As of June 30, 2023, the trust fund’s assets totaled approximately $10.6 billion. SDCERS’ annualized rate of return over the past 10 years is 7.7%, and its return since inception is 8.7%.   SDCERS’ net return for Fiscal Year 2023 of 5.2% was less than its assumed rate of return (6.5%), and also below the policy benchmark, which posted a 7.6% return for the year. The policy benchmark is a measure of how the Total Fund would have performed if the actively managed public portions of the portfolio had been completely passively invested in index funds, and if the private portions of the portfolio achieved stated benchmark returns. Allocations away from the policy benchmark, in other words, relative over- and underweights to specific asset classes, as well as selection effects within specific asset classes, hurt SDCERS’ relative returns. Specifically, SDCERS did not meet its benchmark for FY 2023 primarily due to the Fund’s overweight to Private Equity, which underperformed other asset classes on a relative basis, and underperformance of the Opportunity Fund investments. The Opportunity Fund underperformed its benchmark by 13.9%, and the majority of this underperformance is explained by the difference between the policy benchmark return, which is a mix of global equity and fixed income, and the strategy specific benchmark returns.   As of June 30, 2023, SDCERS benched the performance of the Opportunity Fund to a mix of 78% global stocks and 22% U.S. Fixed Income. This mix was used to represent the opportunity cost of allocating assets to the Opportunity Fund. Going forward, the Opportunity Fund will be benchmarked to indices that more closely align with the type of investments held, which should control tracking error to the policy benchmark. Looking at the performance of the Opportunity Fund against the trend following benchmark, the Managed Futures allocation underperformed as a result of trend reversals in fixed income markets in the first quarter of 2023. SDCERS’ trend-following managers were short in fixed income when rates rallied on the heels of the regional banking crisis, hurting relative returns.   While Private Equity enjoyed fantastic returns in 2021 and 2022, the asset class was challenged in late 2022 and into 2023 as a result of the Fed’s interest rate hiking cycle, which created a less favorable environment for Initial Public Offerings amidst higher borrowing costs. SDCERS’ overweight to private equity hurt returns from both an allocation and selection effect, as private equity as an asset class underperformed, and also from a selection effect, as private equity holdings within SDCERS’ portfolio underperformed the private equity benchmark by 2.9% due to valuation write-downs.   Performance can also be measured in comparison to returns of other public pension plans, though it is important to remember that different plans have a variety of circumstances impacting their asset allocations and, in turn, their return targets. SDCERS compares very favorably against its peers over longer time periods – posting returns in the upper second quartile of the universe over rolling 3-, 5-, and 10-year periods ending June 30, 2023. Over the past 20 years, SDCERS’ return is in the top 4% of similarly-sized public pension plans. SDCERS’ risk-adjusted return, which takes into account reward for risk undertaken, is in the top quartile compared to similarly-sized public pension plans over the past 3, 5, and 10 years.   More...

September 2023 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Sep 01, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled September 2023 Board and Committee meetings in our usual Board Meeting Room on the 3rd floor of our downtown office building – located at 401 West A Street, Suite 300.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely (except as specified below) – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the September 2023 meetings here.   However, as always, you can watch the Business & Governance Committee and/or Board of Administration meeting live by going to the agendas page (linked above) at the start time of the meeting and clicking the “Live Media” button next to the corresponding meeting, which will display once the meeting begins.    Meeting Dates September 7th –          Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting at 12:30 p.m. PST   September 8th –          Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment by attending the relevant meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins.   More...

Summer 2023 SCOOP Newsletter & FY 2023 Annual Member Statements

Date: Aug 22, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Pension, Press Release

SDCERS’ 2023 Summer SCOOP Newsletter has arrived and should hit mailboxes within the next few weeks! For members who have not yet retired or entered DROP (including inactive and deferred vested members), a copy of the newsletter will be included in the envelope with your FY 2023 Annual Member Statement. You can also view an electronic version of current and past issues on our website, here. The purpose of our newsletter is to keep you informed about what is currently happening here at SDCERS, along with providing educational content. If you’d like to receive an electronic copy of future SCOOP issues in advance of the mailed copy, you can sign up here.   Along with the Summer Newsletter, SDCERS members who have earned SDCERS service credit, but who have not yet retired or entered DROP, should be receiving their Annual Member Statement in the mail within the next few weeks. This statement contains detailed account information for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2023, which means the information is current as of July 1, 2023. The purpose of the Annual Member Statement is (1) to ensure that your beneficiary designations are correct, and (2) to keep you up-to-date regarding the details of your SDCERS retirement account. You can also download electronic copies of current and past Annual Member Statements via your secure Member Portal account.   A video detailing the contents of your statement is available here.  Please review the information on your statement carefully. If you have questions about the Personal Information listed, please contact your Payroll Specialist or update your information in SAP (or contact your Human Resources office if you are a Port or Airport member).  Contact SDCERS if you have questions or need to update the Member and Contribution Information or Beneficiary Information, or if you believe there is an error in your statement.   If you have questions about your Annual Member Statement, please contact your Payroll Specialist or call the SDCERS Call Center at 619-525-3600, open Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST). And remember, your most up-to-date account information is always available on the SDCERS Member Portal.   More...

CalPERS & CalSTRS' Third-Party Data Breach - SDCERS Not Impacted

Date: Jul 18, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

CalPERS and CalSTRS have informed its retired members and beneficiaries that their personal information may have been involved in a data breach. Neither CalPERS nor CalSTRS’ own information systems were compromised. However, PBI Research Services/Berwyn Group, a third-party vendor that both retirement systems contracted with to identify member deaths, used the file transfer application MOVEit, which was the subject of the breach. The app’s vulnerability allowed certain personally identifiable information, such as names, dates of birth, and social security numbers, to be downloaded by an unauthorized party. Overall, it has been reported that approximately 769,000 retired CalPERS members and 415,000 CalSTRS members and beneficiaries were affected.   As soon as the data breach was reported, SDCERS staff immediately ensured that our own systems remain secure, and that our contracted vendors were not affected by this worldwide data security incident. Although SDCERS was not impacted by this incident, members who are also members of CalPERS may be affected. CalPERS notified those who were affected via mail, but SDCERS does not have any specific information about the identities of those individuals. Therefore, in an effort to continue protecting your private information and SDCERS account details, we have internally flagged the accounts of all SDCERS retirees who have requested reciprocity with CalPERS. If a member with a flagged account contacts SDCERS, our Call Center has been instructed to be extra vigilant when confirming the identity of the caller before releasing any information. If the caller is unable to satisfactorily answer the security questions, the call will be escalated to a supervisor.   To reiterate, SDCERS was not impacted by this cybersecurity incident and your private information remains secure. Further, SDCERS maintains effective safeguards to prevent these types of security breaches. In fact, SDCERS’ network recently underwent an annual penetration test, which includes a scan of all systems and devices connected to our network to identify security vulnerabilities. The results were very positive and the testing vendor stated, “the SDCERS network was observed as extremely secure.” This test was in addition to our regular Department of Homeland Security scans, internal scans, WhiteHat weekly external penetration testing, and audits performed by our external and internal auditors.   More...

July 2023 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Jul 06, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled July 2023 Board and Committee meetings in our usual Board Meeting Room on the 3rd floor of our downtown office building – located at 401 West A Street, Suite 300.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely (except as specified below) – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the July 2023 meetings here.   However, as always, you can watch the Business & Governance Committee and/or Board of Administration meeting live by going to the agendas page (linked above) at the start time of the meeting and clicking the “Live Media” button next to the corresponding meeting, which will display once the meeting begins.    Meeting Dates July 12th –                  Audit Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST   July 13th –                  Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting at 12:30 p.m. PST   July 14th –                  Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment by attending the relevant meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins.   More...

Important Notice Regarding City Retiree Health & FY 2024 Retiree Health Reimbursement Allowances

Date: Jul 06, 2023 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

As SDCERS staff teleworks for a portion of each week, there may not always be a retiree health staff member available in the office to assist members in person. Moving forward, if you would like to speak with a retiree health staff member in person, you must travel to SDCERS’ downtown offices on a Tuesday or Thursday (not including holidays) between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. You are encouraged to call ahead to confirm availability of a retiree health staff member, especially if you are requesting to have your documents reviewed. SDCERS’ Call Center is open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. – noon, and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. You can also reach SDCERS’ retiree health staff via email, at health@sdcers.org.   Also, if you have a retiree health reimbursement plan through your City employment, your annual reimbursement allowance may have changed for fiscal year 2024. See this chart for updated City retiree health reimbursement allowances, which vary depending on your specific health reimbursement plan. More...

IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING CITY RETIREE HEALTH

Date: Jun 14, 2023 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

As SDCERS staff teleworks for a portion of each week, there may not always be a retiree health staff member available in the office to assist members in person. Moving forward, if you would like to speak with a retiree health staff member in person, you must travel to SDCERS’ downtown offices on a Tuesday or Thursday (not including holidays) between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. You are encouraged to call ahead to confirm availability of a retiree health staff member, especially if you are requesting to have your documents reviewed. SDCERS’ Call Center is open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. – noon, and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. You can also reach SDCERS’ retiree health staff via email, at health@sdcers.org.   More...

Calculating "Final Compensation" As Used In Your Pension Benefit Formula

Date: Jun 08, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Pension, Retirement Resources

Most City General Members are anticipating significant salary increases, staggered over the next couple of years. You can read about the negotiated increases in the MEA’s article, here. In light of this, we thought it would be helpful to provide a quick review of how “final compensation” is calculated and used in your pension benefit formula.   If you are a City General Member initially hired before July 1, 2009, then your final compensation is your highest one-year pensionable salary, approximately equal to your highest 26 consecutive pay periods prior to your retirement (or DROP entry) date.   If you are a City General Member initially hired on or after July 1, 2009, then your final compensation will be calculated as your highest pensionable salary averaged over three years.   The raises negotiated between the City and relevant labor unions will amount to a compounded total of a 22.8% increase as of July 1, 2025. For the sake of simplicity, let’s assume these negotiated increases are the only changes to your salary between now and your retirement (or DROP entry) date. In order for the full 22.8% increase to be used as your final compensation:City General Members hired before July 1, 2009 must retire or enter DROP on or after July 2, 2026.City General Members hired on or after July 1, 2009 must retire on or after July 2, 2028.To generate a benefit estimate through your Member Portal account that takes into account your future increased salary as discussed in this article, you must first choose a retirement date on or after the date stated above (whichever applies to you based on your hire date), and then override your final compensation on the right side of the calculator accordingly. The easiest way to do that prior to the first increase on July 1, 2023 is to simply increase the “Final Average Salary” that automatically populates on the left side of the calculator by 22.8% and then input that higher number on the right side.   Please see our Benefit Estimate Calculator Fact Sheet for guidance regarding generating estimates and contact our Call Center if you need additional help. Our Call Center can be reached at (619) 525-3600 on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. More...

Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) for Fiscal Year 2024

Date: May 12, 2023 Categories: COLA, News Articles, Press Release

At its May 12, 2023 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved the Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) that will be applied to eligible SDCERS retirees’ (including active DROP participants) monthly pension benefit amount beginning with their July 2023 payment. Your pension benefit will receive a COLA for Fiscal Year 2024 if your retirement or DROP entry date is on or before June 30, 2023.   Per San Diego Municipal Code section 24.1505 and section 1301 of the Port and Airport Plans, the COLA is calculated every year based on the change in the cost of living between the two previous Decembers, as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index (“CPI”), United States – All items. However, the maximum allowable increase in any given year is 2.0%.   In years where the COLA is greater than the maximum 2.0% (such as this year), the amount over 2% is added to what is called a “COLA bank.” A retiree’s COLA bank accumulates based on their fiscal year of retirement (or DROP entry), and each annual retiree group has its own COLA bank. In years that the CPI’s published COLA is less than 2%, each retiree group’s COLA bank may be able to increase the actual COLA received by the retiree up to a maximum of 2%, if that retiree group’s COLA bank has accrued enough funds from previous years where the published COLA was greater than 2%.   According to the CPI, the change in cost of living between December 31, 2021 and December 31, 2022 was 6.5% (rounded to the nearest 1/10th of a percent). This means that everyone who is retired or participating in DROP as of June 30, 2023 will receive the maximum 2% COLA increase to their pension benefit, and bank the additional 4.5%.    This means that those who receive the fiscal year 2024 COLA and add the additional 4.5% to their COLA banks are guaranteed to receive a 2% COLA in fiscal years 2025 and 2026, at the very least (assuming we do not experience a negative COLA in either year). Let’s look at a theoretical scenario to really see the significance – but please remember that we have absolutely no way of predicting what the CPI’s published COLA will be in future years, and this is therefore very much a hypothetical example:   If Sam Diego retires or enters DROP in June of 2023 and his initial monthly pension benefit is $5,000: You can see how the 4.5% addition to Sam’s COLA bank right off the bat can help ensure his benefit receives the maximum 2% increase in future years, when the published COLA is less than 2%. In the example above, we assumed that the published COLA applicable to fiscal years 2025-2030 was always between 1.3% and 2.0%. Note that if the published COLA is less in any given years, more would be subtracted from Sam’s COLA bank for those years. Conversely, if the published COLA is greater than 2.0% in any of the given years, then the amount above 2.0% would be once again added to his bank.   This article is not an attempt to persuade you to retire or enter DROP before July 1, 2023 – there are certainly other factors to consider, such as your age, upcoming salary increases, etc. (please review this article discussing factors to consider before deciding when to retire, or this article discussing considerations when deciding upon a DROP entry date). However, as this is the second highest published COLA we’ve seen since 1982, and it is very rare for a retiree to add such a large amount to their COLA bank in a single year, it’s worth noting and may factor into your decision to retire or enter DROP before July 1, 2023. (Note: You must enter DROP at the beginning of a pay period – please consult your payroll specialist to confirm your pay period start dates in June.)   If you are eligible to receive a fiscal year 2024 COLA, the applicable increase will be reflected in your July 2023 pension payment.   More...

Board Vice President Lisa Marie Harris to Continue Leadership in Second Term

Date: May 12, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

At today's meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration unanimously approved Board President Paul Kaufmann's recommendation for Lisa Marie Harris to continue her position as Board Vice President for her second consecutive term.  Congratulations to our Board Vice President! You can see all of the SDCERS Board Members’ biographies, including Lisa Marie's, on this page. More...

May 2023 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: May 05, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled May 2023 Board and Committee meetings in our usual Board Meeting Room on the 3rd floor of our downtown office building – located at 401 West A Street, Suite 300.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely (except as specified below) – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the May 2023 meetings here.   However, as always, you can watch the Business & Governance Committee and/or Board of Administration meeting live by going to the agendas page (linked above) at the start time of the meeting and clicking the “Live Media” button next to the corresponding meeting, which will display once the meeting begins.    Meeting Dates May 11th –                  Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting at 12:30 p.m. PST   May 12th –                  Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment by attending the relevant meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins.   More...

SDCERS' Fiscal Year 2022 Actuarial Valuations

Date: Mar 21, 2023 Categories: Actuarial Valuations, Board, News Articles, Press Release

At the March 10th meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved the June 30, 2022 actuarial valuations for its three plan sponsors. These valuations determine each plan sponsor’s Fiscal Year 2024 Actuarially Determined Contribution (“ADC”), which are expected to be paid on July 1, 2023.    The City’s ADC for Fiscal Year 2024, is $448.1 million.  The valuation is a snapshot in time on June 30, 2022; the City’s active employees affected by Proposition B who retroactively joined the system on July 9, 2022 were not included in the valuation results.  However, the SDCERS Board of Administration voted to include the City’s FY24 Normal Costs and the first year of the 20-year amortization of the liability shortfall for these same 3,200 members in the ADC due July 1, 2023.   The Port’s Fiscal Year 2024 ADC is $19.2 million, and the Airport’s is $4.96 million.   You can review all three June 30, 2022 valuations, as well as past years’ actuarial valuation reports, here.   More...

Board President Paul Kaufmann to Continue Leadership in Second Term

Date: Mar 10, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS’ Board of Administration unanimously voted for Paul Kaufmann to continue his position as Board President for his second consecutive one-year term. Paul’s second term will begin with the May 2023 meeting, at which time he will present his choice for Vice President. Congratulations to our re-elected Board President! You can see all of the SDCERS Board Members’ biographies, including Paul’s, on this page. More...

Results of 2023 Retiree Board Member Election

Date: Mar 10, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

On February 28th, voting concluded in the election for SDCERS' Retiree Member seat. All retired Members (City, Port, and Airport) were eligible to vote in this election. Thank you to all who participated in these elections, and especially to both candidates for volunteering their time.   The candidate who received the majority of votes for the Retiree Board Member seat was B.Chris Brewster. The full Board of Administration recertified the election results at today’s meeting. Chris will attend his first Board meeting as a member of the Board on May 12, 2023. Elected members serve a four-year term before a new election must be held, which means Chris’ term will end March 31, 2027.   Congratulations to our newest elected Board Member and thank you in advance for your voluntary service on SDCERS’ Board of Administration!   More...

March 2023 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Mar 03, 2023 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled March 2023 Board and Committee meetings in our usual Board Meeting Room on the 3rd floor of our downtown office building – located at 401 West A Street, Suite 300.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the March 2023 meetings here.   However, as always, you can watch the Business & Governance Committee and/or Board of Administration meeting live by going to the agendas page (linked above) at the start time of the meeting and clicking the “Live Media” button next to the corresponding meeting, which will display once the meeting begins.  Meeting Dates March 8th –   Audit Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST March 9th –   Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                       Business & Governance Committee at 9:15 a.m. PST                       Investment Committee meeting at 12:30 p.m. PST   March 10th –  Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment by attending the relevant meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins.   More...

Retiree Board Member Election Begins Today, Ends 2/28

Date: Feb 14, 2023 Categories: Board, Events, News Articles, Press Release

Voting opens today for the Retiree Board Member election – if you are an SDCERS retiree, you should receive a ballot letter in the mail. This letter contains your unique validation number that you will need in order to cast your vote, so don’t throw your letter away until you have voted!  All votes must be cast by 5:00 p.m. PST on February 28th.   The nominees in this election are Chris Brewster and John Hemmerling. Each candidate’s statement is contained in your ballot letter and also on the online voting platform. Votes may be cast by phone by calling 1-855-812-8049, or online at https://vote.escvote.com/SDCERS – specific information about the voting process is contained in your election ballot letter. Again, you will need your unique validation number contained in your ballot letter in order to cast your vote.   If you lost your letter or need help voting, please contact the Election Services Helpdesk at SDCERSHelp@electionservicescorp.com or by calling 1-866-720-4357, open on regular business days from 6:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. PST. (Note: Email is generally the quickest way to get your questions answered.)   More...

Results of Active Police and Retiree Board Member Nominations

Date: Jan 20, 2023 Categories: Board, Events, News Articles, Press Release

Nominations for the Active Safety Police and Retiree Board Member seats concluded at 5:00 p.m. PST on January 17th. In order for a nominee to be eligible to proceed in these elections, they needed to have at least 10 signatures on their nomination petition by the deadline.   Current Active Safety Police Board Member, Lou Maggi, was the sole nominee for his seat. Since he was the sole nominee, there is no need for an election and Lou will continue his Board service through March 2027. Congratulations Lou!   However, we have two eligible nominees running for the Retiree Board Member seat: Bartlett (Chris) Brewster and John C. Hemmerling. Therefore, we will be proceeding with this election. All retirees will be mailed an election ballot on February 10, 2023 – please do not throw away your letter until after you have voted, as it contains a unique validation code that you will need to cast your vote! Voting will open on February 14th, and all votes must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on February 28, 2023. Votes may be cast by phone or online – specific information about the voting process is contained in your election ballot letter and will also be posted on the front page of SDCERS’ website once voting begins. More...

2022 1099-R Forms

Date: Jan 18, 2023 Categories: 1099R, News Articles, Press Release

All IRS Form 1099-R’s for tax year 2022 were mailed on January 11th. This means all SDCERS retirees and beneficiaries who received a payment from SDCERS in calendar year 2022 should be receiving their 2022 1099-R forms via U.S. mail over the next couple of weeks. To access your 1099-R form sooner, please log in to your Member Portal account, click on “Tax Reporting” on the left, and select “2022 1099R” to download an electronic copy. You can also update your tax withholding preferences on your Member Portal by clicking on “Tax Withholding.” This guide explains how to update your tax withholding preferences.   For a detailed explanation of the pertinent information in your 1099-R, as well as answers to frequently asked questions regarding this tax form, please review our 1099-R Fact Sheet. If you have additional questions, please contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600 or submit your questions electronically via our Contact Us web form.   More...

Meet SDCERS' New Chief Information Officer

Date: Jan 17, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS’ IT Department is starting off the New Year with new leadership – please join us in welcoming Michelle Wegner-Maleki as our new Chief Information Officer! Michelle has actually served SDCERS since 2007, first as the IT Application Services Manager and now as Chief Information Officer (“CIO”). As the CIO, she is responsible for managing all aspects of the SDCERS’ information technology functions, including network services, business application, communication services, business resumption, and project management services. Prior to joining SDCERS, Michelle worked for the City of San Diego since 1997, supporting the application environment across multiple City departments. Michelle is a native to San Diego and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics at San Diego State University. She also holds a certificate of Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute. More...

SDCERS Has a New Address!

Date: Jan 03, 2023 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

As of today, SDCERS’ physical offices are again open to the public – but wait, there’s more! We are now officially located on the 8th floor of the same building, so if you visit us in person, please be sure to take the correct set of elevators that go to the 8th floor (there are multiple banks of elevators, the signs above each set specify which floors those elevators go to.) See this page for directions to our building.   Also, if you park in the building’s underground parking garage, note that you will need to take the elevators to the Lobby Level first, and then cross the lobby to the elevators that go to the 8th floor. Don’t forget to bring your parking ticket with you for validation!   Lastly, please be sure to use the following address if you mail any documents to SDCERS moving forward: 401 West A StreetSuite 800 San Diego, CA 92101 (Don’t forget that you can always send documents via fax to (619) 595-0513, or as a PDF attachment via email to sdcers@sdcers.org.)   If you have any questions or if you find yourself a little lost while trying to find us, please contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. – noon and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. (PST).   Thank you and happy New Year!   More...

Upcoming Elections for Active Safety Police and Retiree Board Member Seats

Date: Dec 28, 2022 Categories: Board, Events, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS’ Board of Administration consists of 5 elected members, each of whom serve a four-year term before elections are held once again. The four-year terms for SDCERS’ active safety police Board Member, Lou Maggi, and retiree Board Member, Charlie Hogquist, are ending March 31, 2023. Therefore, SDCERS has begun the elections to fill these seats.   Nominations are open for these elections and all nominations and petition signatures must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. (PST) on January 17, 2023. All active City Safety Police Members and City retirees are eligible to run for the appropriate seat and have been mailed a letter, which contains a unique validation number and instructions explaining how to self-nominate and/or sign a nominee’s petition. Please retain this letter, as you will need your unique validation number in order to submit a nomination or sign an existing nominee's petition.  If you are an active City Safety Police Member or City retiree interested in serving on SDCERS’ Board, please be sure to self-nominate by the deadline; all other members in these two categories, please be sure to sign the nomination petition(s) of any candidate(s) you support!   If you are in either of these membership categories and have not received your nominations letter by January 2, 2023; if you lost your letter; or if you have any questions about the nomination process, please email SDCERShelp@electionservicescorp.com or call 1-866-720-4357, Monday – Friday, 6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. PST. All nominations and signatures must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on January 17, 2023. At that time, if there is only one nominee for each category with at least 10 petition signatures (the minimum requirement to move forward), an election will not be necessary. If there are competing nominations, then we will proceed with the election(s) and all members who are eligible to vote will receive a letter with further instructions.    More...

SDCERS' IT Department Receives 2022 MISAC Quality IT Practices Award

Date: Dec 16, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS is proud to announce it has received the Municipal Information System Association of California (MISAC) Quality Information Technology Practices Award for the fifth year in a row. MISAC is a collaborative organization of California local government IT professionals with the goal of promoting leadership, information sharing, and access to resources to enhance local government services and effectiveness. Membership includes cities, towns, public safety, special districts, and other local governmental agencies/districts.  MISAC's Quality IT Practices program is meant to document and acknowledgement MISAC agencies that are following IT best practices. Applicants are required to submit a detailed questionnaire and supporting material. Agency’s strengths are benchmarked to System Administration, Audit, Network, and Security (SANS) Institute standards. The SANS Institute is a cooperative research and education organization of security practitioners from varied worldwide organizations, corporations, and universities working together to help the global information security community.   Receiving MISAC Quality IT Practices Award is an honor and tribute to the dedication and performance of SDCERS’ IT staff and contractors. More...

New Member Portal Design Upgrade

Date: Dec 10, 2022 Categories: Member Portal, News Articles, Press Release

IMPORTANT: If you continue to experience the "Site Offline for Maintenance" page when attempting to access the Member Portal, please clear your browser's cache and try again.  If you log in to your SDCERS Member Portal account, you may notice it looks a little different – don’t worry, you’re not being tricked or phished! SDCERS’ IT and Member Services staff have been working diligently over the last few months to perform an upgrade of SDCERS’ internal systems and the Member Portal. Part of this upgrade included a slightly different look for the Portal: However, all of the same functions are available. Active members can still monitor their contribution account, run different retirement scenarios with the benefit estimate calculator, add and remove beneficiaries, apply for retirement, and more. Retirees can still access 1099’s and pay statements, as well as make updates to their tax withholding preferences, beneficiary designations, direct deposit, and contact information.   If you are perusing your account and come across any issues or have any questions about what you see, please don’t hesitate to send us a message about it via our Contact Us page, or call us at (619) 525-3600 on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. – noon and 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. (PST). More...

SDCERS' Downtown Offices Will Be CLOSED December 12 - 30, 2022

Date: Dec 05, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be ending 2022 with a big move – literally! During the last half of December, SDCERS staff will be packing up their offices on the 4th floor of SDCERS’ downtown office building and relocating to the 8th floor. This means a few things for our members:While we are in the process of moving, our physical offices will be closed – if you have an in-person counseling appointment scheduled during this time period, you will be given the option to either keep your appointment but attend telephonically, or reschedule the appointment to take place in-person after we have settled into our new offices. However, during the move, the Call Center will remain open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST). You can also send us a message via our Contact Us page and we will respond within three business days. (Note: SDCERS will be fully closed on December 26, 2022 and January 2, 2023 in observance of the Christmas holiday and New Year’s Day.)Starting in January 2023, please be sure to use the following address if you are mailing any documents to SDCERS: 401 West A StreetSuite 800 San Diego, CA 92101 (Don’t forget that you can always send documents via fax to (619) 595-0513, or as a PDF attachment via email to sdcers@sdcers.org!)If you visit our downtown offices after the beginning of the new year, make sure you take the correct elevator to the 8th floor, instead of the 4th. Please pay attention to the signs above the different sets of elevators and be sure to take one that goes to the 8th floor!  More...

City Retirees: Notice RE 2023 Medicare Part B Premiums

Date: Nov 30, 2022 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

If you are a City retiree currently receiving health reimbursements for Medicare Part B premiums, you should have recently received a letter in the mail from SDCERS. The standard Medicare Part B premiums are decreasing from $170.10 to $164.90 per month, beginning in January 2023. Please submit the 2023 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS, confirming the changes to your Medicare premium.   To obtain your 2023 Benefit Verification Letter, visit www.ssa.gov, and from the homepage sign in or sign up for a personal “my Social Security” account. Once you’ve accessed your account, follow the instructions to access your Benefit Verification Letter. You can also call your local Social Security office.   We are anticipating a large number of submissions this year due to the premium change. If you submit all of the proper paperwork to SDCERS by January 10, 2023, we will attempt to have the new premium amount reflected on your January 2023 pension benefit payment. If your paperwork is received after this date or we were unable to process your request timely, then the adjusted reimbursement amount will be included in the following payroll cycle once all required documentation is received.   You may submit your 2023 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS in the following ways:Fax a copy to: (858) 581-5314Mail a copy to: 401 West A Street, Suite 400, San Diego, CA 92101 Attn: HealthE-mail a scanned copy to: health@sdcers.org IMPORTANT: If you submit your Benefit Verification Letter (and/or any other health-related paperwork) via email, please be sure any attachments are in PDF format only. You should receive an automated confirmation email within 24 hours of your email submission; however, if you do not receive this confirmation email, it does not mean we didn’t receive your email. First, please check your spam or junk folder to see if the confirmation email ended up there.  Please refrain from calling us to confirm that your Benefit Verification Letter has been received, as the staff who answer the phones are also processing the documents, and additional phone calls may cause delays. If you believe you provided us with timely documentation, but are not reimbursed the increased amount in your January 2023 pension payment, then please contact our Retiree Health Team at (619) 525-3627 or health@sdcers.org in February.   More...

SDCERS Receives the 2022 Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration

Date: Nov 29, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

For the fifth year in a row, SDCERS has been awarded the Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration. The Public Pension Coordinating Council grants this award, which recognizes SDCERS for meeting professional standards for plan funding and administration as set forth in the Public Pension Standards.​Recognition Award for Administration SDCERS received the Recognition Award for Administration due to its adherence to the five essential administrative categories:Comprehensive Benefit Program. The system must provide a comprehensive benefit program including service retirement benefits, in-service death benefits, disability benefits, vesting, and provisions for granting a cost-of-living adjustment.Actuarial. An Actuarial Valuation must be completed at least every two years using generally recognized and accepted actuarial principles and practices.Audit. The system must obtain an unqualified opinion from an independent audit conducted in accordance with government auditing standards generally accepted in the United States.Investments. The system must follow written investment policies and written fiduciary standards and the system must obtain an annual investment performance evaluation from an outside investment review entity.Communications. Members must be provided a handbook or summary plan description, regular updates to the documents, and an annual benefit statement. Meetings of the governing board of the system are conducted at least quarterly with adequate public notice. Recognition Award for Funding SDCERS received the Recognition Award for Funding because its three plan sponsors (City of San Diego, Port of San Diego, and San Diego County Regional Airport Authority) consistently pay their Annual Required Contributions as determined by the SDCERS Board.  The Public Pension Coordinating Council (PPCC) is a coalition of three national associations that represent public retirement systems and administrators: National Association of State Retirement Administrators (NASRA), the National Council on Teacher Retirement (NCTR) and the National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS). Together, these associations represent more than 500 of the largest pension plans in the United States serving most of the nation’s 18+ million employees of state and local governments. More...

SDCERS' 2022 Annual Membership Meeting Video

Date: Nov 16, 2022 Categories: Events, Investments, News Articles, Pension, Press Release, Proposition B

This year's Annual Membership Meeting took place in-person at the Balboa Park Club Ballroom on October 26th. If you missed it, you can download a copy of the presentation here.   The theme of the meeting was "A fiduciary builds the strongest trust from bricks of integrity, transparency, and customer service, which is reinforced by accountability and professionalism," which incorporates all of SDCERS’ core values. Here is a short synopsis of this year's presentations:Marcelle Voorhies Rossman, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, explained how SDCERS participated in the unwinding of Proposition B, which closed the City’s pension system to most new hires between July 20, 2012 and July 10, 2021.Carina Coleman, Chief Investment Officer, provided a summary of SDCERS' investment performance and other investment activities in fiscal year 2022.Gregg Rademacher, Chief Executive Officer, expanded on SDCERS' core values and how these values are upheld by SDCERS’ staff in the pursuit of securing all of our members’ current and future pension benefits.Cynthia Queen, Member Services Director, discussed SDCERS’ fiduciary duty to our members and the importance of communication from a member services standpoint, gave a brief overview of the Member Portal, and encouraged all members to register for their own Member Portal account.We'd like to thank the attendees at this year's meeting for being a wonderful, engaging audience. The meeting was video recorded and you can watch it here. We hope to see you all at next year's meeting! ​ More...

November 2022 Audit Committee Meeting - In Person

Date: Nov 09, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled November 16, 2022 Audit Committee meeting; however, due to ongoing construction, this meeting cannot be held in our usual Board Meeting Room at our downtown offices. Instead, the meeting will be held at the Best Western Plus Island Palms Hotel in the Sunset Conference Room – see further details below.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not currently being held remotely – Audit Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the November 16, 2022 Audit Committee meeting here.  Meeting Location & Parking SDCERS’ usual Board Meeting Room remains under construction. Therefore, the upcoming Audit Committee meeting will be held in the Sunset Conference Room at the Best Western Plus Island Palms Hotel, located at 2051 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106. Parking is complimentary, either at the hotel or across the street.  Meeting Date November 16th –        Audit Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment, either by attending the meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins, or by submitting a written statement ahead of time. To request a written statement to be read aloud at the meeting, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting. Please include your contact information in your request. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the meeting.   More...

SDCERS' Board Approves Annual Supplemental Benefit for 2022

At its November 4, 2022 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved payment of the Annual Supplemental Benefit for eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries. The Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid in years when the fund’s investment earnings are sufficient to qualify, according to a set formula defined in the plan documents.   In addition, the Corbett Settlement Increase (“Corbett benefit”) is paid to eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries in years that the Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid. If you are eligible for one or both of these benefits, payment will be included in your November 2022 monthly pension benefit.   The eligibility requirements for the Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett benefit are described in our FAQs under “Annual Supplemental Benefit, Corbett, COLA, COL Annuity.” Here, you will also find a description of how these benefits are calculated.   In addition to the requirements outlined in the FAQ’s, in order to be eligible for the 2022 Annual Supplemental Benefit, a retiree or continuance beneficiary must have been (1) alive, and (2) eligible to receive a monthly pension benefit on October 1, 2022. If an eligible retiree died on or after October 1, 2022, the retiree’s continuance beneficiary is not eligible for their own Annual Supplemental Benefit this year. In this case, the retiree’s Annual Supplemental Benefit payment will be included in the $2,000 Retiree Death Benefit and Other Payable Monies, which is paid to the beneficiary(ies) designated to receive that death benefit.   More...

DROP Interest Rates for Calendar Year 2023

Date: Nov 04, 2022 Categories: Board, DROP, News Articles, Press Release

At today’s meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration voted to approve staff’s recommended DROP account and DROP annuity interest rates for the next calendar year – meaning these rates will be effective January 1, 2023. The DROP account rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS while a Member is in DROP and the DROP Annuity rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS to annuitize the DROP monies of a Member who has exited DROP and retired. These rates are calculated annually using publicly available indexes as of September 30th of each year. (See Board Rule 6.10(c) and 6.40(b), and the SDCERS CEO’s memorandum presented at the January 2022 Board meeting for more information about how these rates are calculated.)   Therefore, effective January 1, 2023, the annual DROP account interest rate (compounded quarterly) will increase significantly to 2.5%, compared to the current rate of 0.8%. This interest rate will be compounded quarterly and applied to all active DROP participants’ accounts as long as the participant is actively employed by the City of San Diego, San Diego Unified Port District, or the San Diego Regional Airport Authority on the last day of each quarter. This rate is subject to change annually, which means a DROP participant’s account may receive a different interest rate every year during their participation period.   The DROP annuity interest rate will increase to 2.9%, compared to the current rate of 2.1%. This interest rate will be applied to the funds remaining in a DROP retiree’s account when they exit DROP, if the retiree chooses to annuitize all or part of their DROP account, and it will be factored into the calculation of their monthly DROP annuity. Please note that the retiree’s DROP exit date must be during calendar year 2023 in order for the 2.9% annuity factor to apply.   Unlike the DROP account interest rate, the DROP annuity rate will not change for an individual member – the rate that is in effect when a member exits DROP is the rate that will be applied to their annuity, regardless of whether or not the DROP annuity rate changes in future years. Therefore, when you are getting close to your DROP retirement date, your decision to exit DROP before or after the New Year may be affected by the Board’s decision to increase or decrease the DROP annuity interest rate. However, if you do not plan to annuitize your DROP account upon exiting DROP, then the DROP annuity rate changes will not affect you. Click here to review your options regarding how you can receive the funds in your DROP account when you exit DROP.  Please attend a DROP Entry webinar if you are planning to enter DROP soon! The November DROP entry webinar is currently full; however, there will be another in December that has not yet been scheduled. If you are within 3 months of your DROP entry date and are unable to register for either the November or December webinars, please contact SDCERS and let us know.  Please attend a DROP Exit webinar if you are nearing your target DROP exit date! The next DROP exit webinar will be November 17th from noon – 1:30 p.m., and you can register using the following link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7587965465274533643.  (Note: These webinars tend to fill up fast – there will be another DROP exit webinar in December, but it has not yet been scheduled. If you are within 3 months of your DROP exit and are unable to register for either the November or December webinars, please contact SDCERS and let us know.)   If you are considering entering or exiting DROP soon, you must begin the process by first going to your Member Portal account and clicking on either “Online Applications” or “DROP Retirement Application” (whichever is applicable to you) from the left menu, under Tools. Review this information, make your selections, and submit the initial application online. Once received, you will be contacted by an SDCERS staff member to schedule your personal counseling appointment. At your appointment, you can ask questions and make any changes you’d like to your application. Your electronic application is not final and you have not officially scheduled your DROP entry or exit date until you’ve submitted your signed application signature page, which will be given to you by your retirement counselor during or after your appointment.   More...

Calendar Year 2023 City Retiree Health Open Enrollment

Date: Oct 31, 2022 Categories: Events, Health, News Articles, Open Enrollment, Press Release

This year, health open enrollment for City of San Diego retirees will run from November 1st through November 30th. The calendar year 2023 City retiree health booklets have been mailed out to all eligible City retirees and beneficiaries, and should hit mailboxes this week. In the meantime, you can download an electronic version of the booklet here. You can also download and complete enrollment forms by visiting the City Retiree Health page. After you’ve completed an enrollment (or disenrollment) form, you must send it to SDCERS by November 30th – we prefer you scan your forms and email them as a PDF attachment to health@sdcers.org, but you may also fax them to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our offices at:   SDCERS – Health Division 401 West A Street, Suite 400 San Diego, CA 92101   As always, if you do not wish to make any changes to your current healthcare coverage, you do not need to take any action during open enrollment and your coverage will remain the same. There are no new plans this year and no significant changes to existing plans in terms of coverage.   SDCERS will not be holding in-person open enrollment events. Instead, SDCERS will participate in a virtual health fair hosted by SDPEBA (San Diego Public Employee Benefit Association), which will be held on November 2nd from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (PST). You can register for SDPEBA’s virtual health fair at https://go.sdpeba.org/retireeOE/.   We anticipate that the plan providers will once again record the presentations they would have given at SDCERS’ live open enrollment events. For the providers that choose to do so, you will be able to access their videos on our website – this article and SDCERS’ Facebook page will be updated with more information once we receive the video presentations.   If you are comparing different plans and trying to decide which is best for you, don’t forget about CareCounsel! CareCounsel Member Care Specialists are available for your healthcare inquiries and concerns. You can call them at (888) 227-3334 or e-mail staff@carecounsel.com Monday – Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. CareCounsel also provides helpful videos on their website that may answer your questions about Medicare, here: https://carecounsel.com/medicare.html.   SDCERS’ Call Center is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., at (619) 525-3600 and (800) 774-4977. Please be patient with our hard-working staff; we are working with limited resources and call wait times may be longer than usual due to an expected increase in health-related calls. More...

November 2022 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Oct 28, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled November 2022 Board and Committee meetings; however, due to ongoing construction, the meetings cannot be held in our usual Board Meeting Room at our downtown office building. Instead, the meetings will be held at University Club Atop Symphony Towers – see further details below.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not held remotely – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the November 2022 meetings here.  Meeting Location SDCERS’ usual Board Meeting Room remains under construction. Therefore, the November meetings will be held at the University Club Atop Symphony Towers in the Laureate Ballroom (Suite #3400), located at 750 B Street, San Diego, CA 92101.  Meeting Dates November 3rd –          Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting 12:30 p.m. PST   November 4th –          Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment, either by attending the meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins, or by submitting a written statement ahead of time. To request a written statement to be read aloud at a meeting, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the corresponding meeting. Please include the following information in your request: Your contact information and the meeting during which you would like your comment to be read aloud. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting.   More...

SDCERS' 2022 Annual Membership Meeting - You're Invited!

For the first time since 2019, this year's SDCERS Annual Membership Meeting will take place in person on October 28th at the Balboa Park Club Ballroom.   The theme of the meeting is aligned with our core values: "A fiduciary builds the strongest trust from bricks of integrity, transparency, and customer service, which is reinforced by accountability and professionalism."   The presenters will include SDCERS’ Board President, Paul Kaufmann; SDCERS’ CEO, Gregg Rademacher; SDCERS’ Deputy CEO, Marcelle Voorhies Rossman; SDCERS’ Chief Investment Officer, Carina Coleman; and SDCERS’ Director of Member Services, Cynthia Queen.Directions: Balboa Park Club Ballroom, 2144 Pan American Road West. Enter Balboa Park from Park Boulevard and turn west on Presidents Way. The Ballroom is located in the South Palisades area of the park, just north of Puppet Theater. All stakeholders are invited to attend, and no RSVP or registration is required. The meeting will also be video recorded and uploaded to our YouTube channel as soon as it is available. We hope to see you all at this year's meeting! More...

Considerations Before Deciding When to Enter/Exit DROP

Date: Sep 23, 2022 Categories: DROP, News Articles, Retirement Resources

City Members hired before July 1, 2005; Port Members hired before October 1, 2005; and Airport Members hired before October 2, 2006 have the option to participate in the Deferred Retirement Option Plan (“DROP”) when they become age and service eligible to retire. You can review our DROP Fact Sheet for more detailed information about this program, but one important aspect of DROP is that when a member enters, they generally must exit and fully retire within five years of their DROP entry date (exception for City firefighters). Many DROP participants elect to stay in DROP and continue working for their plan sponsor for the full five-year period, while many others only stay in for a fraction of that time – it is entirely up to each member if they want to exit DROP early based on their personal circumstances.   That being said, here are a few things to consider before you decide when to enter (and possibly when to exit) DROP, not in any particular order:COLA – The annual cost of living adjustment (“COLA”) applies every July to the monthly pension benefit of every DROP participant who entered DROP by the previous June 30th. The COLA can increase your pension benefit up to 2% in any given year. Therefore, some members intentionally choose to enter DROP on or before June 30th so that their benefit receives the COLA immediately.Note: The Board approves the COLA at its May meeting each year, so you will know what the COLA will be more than a month in advance. However, keep in mind you must enter DROP at the beginning of a pay period, which may not be exactly on June 30th – plan ahead to schedule your DROP entry date accordingly; if you decide you want to enter DROP before July 1st of a given year in order to receive the COLA in July, we recommend submitting your online DROP entry application by early May, so we can schedule your counseling appointment in May or the beginning of June. Don’t procrastinate until the end of June, or you may risk being unable to enter DROP before July! Annual Member Contribution Account Interest – On the flip side, if you enter DROP after June 30th of a given year, your member contribution account receives the annual compounded interest (currently 6.5%), which only applies to members who are not retired or in DROP as of July 1st. While the interested added to your contribution account does not increase your base pension benefit, it will slightly increase your Cost of Living Annuity (“COL Annuity”) and Surviving Spouse Annuity (only applicable if you choose the Maximum Benefit (Single) option). However, this increase is rarely greater than the increase due to the COLA would be, but still something to keep in mind!DROP Account Interest – While you are participating in DROP, your DROP account will receive quarterly compounded interest at whatever the current rate is in effect on the last day of each quarter (DROP interest rates are subject to change each year – new rates are generally announced at the November Board meeting and go into effect the following January 1st). However, you must be working and participating in DROP on the last day of the quarter in order to receive interest for that quarter, so this is something to consider before deciding when to exit DROP. This also matters when deciding on your DROP entry date because if you enter DROP towards the end of a quarter and stay in for the full five years, you will not receive interest for the last quarter of your DROP participation period (unless you are a firefighter and able to extend your DROP period through the end of the quarter), thereby likely missing out on the last quarter interest payment to your DROP account. For example, if you enter DROP on June 15th and stay in for the full five years, your last day of work must be on June 14th five years later; therefore, your DROP account would not receive interest for the 2nd quarter of that year, since you wouldn’t be working on June 30th.Final Compensation – For those eligible to enter DROP, the “Final Compensation” used to calculate your pension benefit is your highest pensionable salary averaged over 12 consecutive months. If you recently received a salary increase, especially a significant one, you may want to continue working and receiving that higher pay for a while before you enter DROP, in order for the higher salary to be factored into your pension benefit calculation – if you enter DROP shortly after receiving a raise, it won’t significantly increase your pension benefit. Also, keep in mind that if you have reciprocity with another California public retirement system, the Final Compensation that SDCERS reports to the reciprocal system will be your Final Compensation as of your DROP entry date, not your DROP exit date. This means that even if you receive a salary increase while you are participating in DROP, it will not affect your pension benefit either from SDCERS or the reciprocal system.Birthday – Your retirement factor, another element of your pension benefit formula, is determined based on your plan tier and age at DROP entry, prorated in quarterly increments.  When deciding on your DROP entry date, consider your exact age – for example, if your plan tier’s retirement factor increases between 60 and 61, and you enter DROP when you are 60 years and 7 months old, the factor used in your benefit calculation will be slightly higher than what would be used if you retired at 60 years and 5 months old. Therefore, if your tentative DROP entry date is close to your next quarter age, you may want to push your entry date a few weeks so your pension benefit calculation will use that slightly higher retirement factor.DROP Annuity Interest Rate – Finally, the last consideration is only relevant if you are interested in taking the DROP annuity after you exit. (See this article discussing your options regarding how you'd like to receive your DROP account when you exit.) Like the DROP account rate, the DROP annuity rate is subject to change each year, with new rates typically announced at the November Board meeting, which go into effect the following January 1st. Unlike the DROP account rate, your DROP annuity calculation is locked in at whatever the current DROP annuity rate is in effect on the day that you exit DROP. Therefore, in your last year of DROP, if the Board announces in November that the DROP annuity rate is going to decrease in January, you may want to exit by the end of December so your annuity is calculated before the rate goes down. (In this case, don’t forget that your DROP account would not receive 4th quarter interest.) If the annuity rate is going to increase in January, then you may want to wait until after December 31st to exit, so your DROP annuity is calculated at the higher rate. However, in order to take advantage of the latter situation, you must have the flexibility to do so based on your DROP entry date – for instance, if you entered DROP towards the end of a calendar year and you stay in for the full five-year period, then you will not be able to wait until the following January to exit, even if the annuity rate is going to increase.All of these considerations are important, but must be balanced by your personal circumstances and desires. As you can see, it’s impossible to take advantage of every single factor listed above, because many of them work against each other – for example, if you enter DROP in June, you set yourself up to receive the COLA immediately, but you are sacrificing the 2nd quarter DROP account interest payment in your last year of DROP. If you wait until July to enter, your COL Annuity and Surviving Spouse Annuity (if applicable) will increase, but you won’t receive the COLA until the following July. So on and so forth. If you have any questions about the considerations described above, please contact SDCERS via our Contact Us page or by calling (619) 525-3600 on regular business days between 9:00 a.m. and noon, or 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST).   More...

SDCERS' Final Investment Return for FY 2022

Date: Sep 22, 2022 Categories: Investments, News Articles, Press Release

At its September Board meeting, SDCERS reported a net return of -1.7% for Fiscal Year 2022. As of June 30, 2022, the trust fund’s assets totaled just over $10.0 billion – a net year over year decrease of approximately $328 million. SDCERS’ annualized rate of return over the past 10 years is 8.5%, and its return since inception is 8.8%.   Although SDCERS’ net return for Fiscal Year 2022 was negative, it significantly outperformed its benchmark, which posted a -5.7% return for the year. The benchmark is a measure of how the total fund would have performed if it had been completely invested in index funds. SDCERS surpassed its benchmark due to the performance of its active managers. In particular, SDCERS’ managed futures allocation had a strong performance over the past year. The managed futures allocation, which seeks to benefit from either upwards or downwards trends in stocks, bonds, commodities, and currencies, was added to the fund in 2019 to add diversification to the plan and act as a buffer in periods of market stress.   Performance can also be measured in comparison to other public pension plans, although it is important to remember that different plans have a variety of sizes, circumstances, and funding statuses, all of which impact their asset allocations and, in turn, their return targets. This past fiscal year, SDCERS’ total fund net return was in the top 4% compared to other similarly-sized plans. Over longer time periods, SDCERS stacks up very well against its peers – posting top quartile returns over rolling 3-, 5-, 10- and 20-year periods ending June 30, 2022. More...

Create Your SDCERS Member Portal Account Today!

Date: Sep 09, 2022 Categories: Member Portal, News Articles, Proposition B

If you have not already done so, please register your account on the secure SDCERS Member Portal! This message is for all SDCERS Members, but particularly for City employees affected by Proposition B, who joined the system as of July 9, 2022 and are now able to register.   Please note that non-retired members will need to know the exact amount of your last SDCERS member contribution in order to complete registration – you can find this amount on your most recent paycheck, under “Pre-Tax Deductions.” Members who are actively participating in DROP will need to know the amount of their last DROP contribution, and retired members will need to know the exact amount of their last pension payment.   Also, we recommend you use a personal email address for registration, rather than your work email address – this is because you will lose access to your work email address when you terminate employment with your plan sponsor and/or retire, but you will still need access to your Member Portal account.  Member Portal Highlights Here are the most important aspects of your Member Portal as an active Member:Update Beneficiary Designations – please do this immediately! In the event of your untimely death, SDCERS needs to know to whom you would like us to pay your applicable death benefits. You can name multiple beneficiaries, as well as primary and alternate beneficiaries, and you can add or remove beneficiaries at any time via your Member Portal account. Please review our Death Benefits Fact Sheet for more information.Reciprocity Request – if you would have been able to establish reciprocity when you were initially hired by the City, had you immediately began participating in SDCERS, you can now begin the process to establish reciprocity via your Member Portal. Once reciprocity has been accepted or denied, you will receive a letter stating the outcome – please note that the process to establish reciprocity may take several months. You can review our Reciprocity & Blended Benefits Fact Sheet for more information.Benefit Estimate Calculator – a very important tool in retirement planning, you can use this calculator to input hypothetical retirement scenarios and get an idea of what your future pension benefit might look like under different sets of circumstances. Please take a look at our Benefit Estimate Calculator Fact Sheet for guidance when generating an estimate.Monitor Your Individual SDCERS Contribution Account – if you are a Prop B employee, your SPSP-H funds were transferred to your SDCERS account several weeks ago. You can view your SDCERS contribution account via the Portal and watch it grow as you continue to add contributions and as interest accrues every July 1st.Submit Purchase of Service Credit Requests – you may be eligible to purchase certain periods of time where you were not contributing to SDCERS. You can submit a Service Purchase Request via your Member Portal and SDCERS will send you a list of all (if any) periods of time you are eligible to purchase, as well as how much each period of time costs. Please review our Purchase of Service Credit Fact Sheet for more information.Apply for Retirement – when you are within six months of being both age and service eligible to retire, you will begin the retirement process by submitting an online application in your Member Portal.If you have any questions or encounter a problem when trying to register, please contact SDCERS at (619) 525-3600, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Alternatively, you can send us an electronic message via our Contact Us page. More...

September 2022 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Sep 02, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled September 2022 Board and Committee meetings; however, due to ongoing construction, the meetings cannot be held in our usual Board Meeting Room downtown. Instead, the meetings will be held at the Best Western Plus Island Palms Hotel in the Sunset Conference Room – see further details below.   Please note that SDCERS Board and Committee meetings are not currently being held remotely – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the September 2022 meetings here.  Meeting Location & Parking SDCERS’ usual Board Meeting Room remains under construction. Therefore, the September meetings will be held in the Sunset Conference Room at the Best Western Plus Island Palms Hotel, located at 2051 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106. Parking is complimentary, either at the hotel or across the street.  Meeting Dates September 8th –          Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                                     Business & Governance Committee meeting at 9:15 a.m. PST                                     Investment Committee meeting 12:30 p.m. PST   September 9th –          Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment, either by attending the meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins, or by submitting a written statement ahead of time. To request a written statement to be read aloud at a meeting, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the corresponding meeting. Please include the following information in your request: Your contact information and the meeting during which you would like your comment to be read aloud. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting. More...

Summer 2022 SCOOP Newsletter & FY 2022 Annual Member Statements

Date: Aug 15, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release, Retirement Resources

SDCERS’ 2022 Summer SCOOP Newsletter has arrived and should hit mailboxes within the next week or so! For members who have not yet retired or entered DROP (including inactive and deferred vested members), a copy of the newsletter will be included in the envelope with your FY 2022 Annual Member Statement. You can also view an electronic version of current and past issues on our website, here. The purpose of our newsletter is to keep you informed about what is currently happening here at SDCERS, along with providing educational content. If you’d like to receive an electronic copy of future SCOOP issues in advance of the mailed copy, you can sign up here.   Along with the Summer Newsletter, SDCERS members who have not yet retired or entered DROP should be receiving their Annual Member Statement in the mail over the next week. This statement contains detailed account information for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2022, which means the information is current as of July 1, 2022. The purpose of the Annual Member Statement is (1) to ensure that your beneficiary designations are correct, and (2) to keep you up-to-date regarding the details of your SDCERS retirement account. You can also access electronic copies of current and past Annual Member Statements via your secure Member Portal account.   A video detailing the contents of your statement is available here.  Please review the information on your statement carefully. If you have questions about the Personal Information listed, please contact your Payroll Specialist or update your information in SAP (or contact your Human Resources office if you are a Port or Airport member).  Contact SDCERS if you have questions or need to update the Member and Contribution Information or Beneficiary Information, or if you believe there is an error in your statement.   If you have questions about your Annual Member Statement, please contact your Payroll Specialist or call the SDCERS Call Center at 619-525-3600, open Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST). And remember, your most up-to-date account information is always available on the SDCERS Member Portal.   More...

SDCERS Welcomes Carina Coleman as Its New Chief Investment Officer

Date: Aug 10, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

After 15 years with the SDCERS investment team and a career in investing, SDCERS’ longtime Chief Investment Officer Liza Crisafi celebrated a well-earned retirement at the end of July. Liza announced her retirement well in advance, allowing SDCERS to conduct an extensive national search. We are pleased to announce that Carina Coleman will be SDCERS’ new Chief Investment Officer!   As a former SDCERS Board Member (and Board President), Carina is a familiar face around SDCERS. “Carina brings technical expertise, strong business acumen, practical CIO experience, detailed knowledge of SDCERS’ investment program policies, good relationships with key SDCERS business partners, and, importantly, a leadership and soft skill set which is in close alignment with SDCERS’ core values,” said Gregg Rademacher, SDCERS CEO. We expect Carina will be joining the team on August 18th. In the interim, Senior Investment Officer Jamie Hamrick is serving as Interim CIO. Jamie, along with our entire investment team, will ensure a smooth transition.   Carina takes charge of SDCERS’ investment portfolio, which was valued at approximately $10.9 billion as of the end of the first quarter of 2022. SDCERS has a well-diversified portfolio that has achieved risk-adjusted returns in the top decile compared to similarly-sized public pension plans over the past 3, 5, and 10 years. Carina shared, “I am very excited about the opportunity to serve as CIO for SDCERS. I have enjoyed working with SDCERS as a Trustee and I look forward to leading the investment team of this well-respected organization.”Carina Coleman, SDCERS' New Chief Investment Officer   Carina most recently served as the Director, Pension and Trust Investments, at Sempra. She earned her MBA in Finance from the Wharton School of Business and is a CFA and CAIA Charterholder. She also holds an MA in International Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and a BA in Economics/International Area Studies and German Studies from UCLA. Carina has experience managing the investments of multi-billion-dollar retirement plans of varying risk profiles across multiple asset classes. She further has expertise in formulating investment policy, constructing portfolios to meet return and risk objectives, conducting investment manager due diligence, and analyzing risk and performance.   Professional recruiting firm EFL & Associates assisted in the search to fill the CIO position.   More...

Will You Be Able to Live Off of Your Pension Benefit?

Date: Jul 08, 2022 Categories: Pension, Retirement Resources

Note: SDCERS does not provide financial planning advice, but offers these general tips for your retirement planning convenience. Picture yourself as a retiree: Are you relaxing on a beach somewhere, maybe playing a round of golf? Or are you living retirement check to retirement check, worrying about how you’ll make ends meet? Everyone wants to spend their golden years in comfort. Fortunately, there are things you can do at every stage in life to achieve financial peace of mind in retirement.Step 1: Post-Retirement Income First things first, you’ll need to identify what your income sources will be after you leave the workforce and estimate what your post-retirement income will be. You can estimate your future pension benefit by logging in to your SDCERS Member Portal account. See the Member Portal FAQs for detailed instructions explaining how to generate pension benefit estimates using the Retirement Benefit Calculator on your Member Portal account. Your primary post-retirement income might be your SDCERS pension benefit – but don’t forget about other possible income streams you may have access to, such as social security benefits, military pension, 401(k), IRA, and other savings accounts or annuities. Maybe you even own a rental property that generates a steady source of income. These are all things to consider before moving on to Step 2.Step 2: Post-Retirement Budget So you’ve figured out where your money is going to come from, now you have to figure out how much money you’re going to need. A commonly accepted rule of thumb is to plan on needing about 80% of your pre-retirement income if you want to maintain the same quality of life after retirement. For example, if your annual take-home salary is $100,000, you should assume you’ll need at least $80,000 a year after you retire. Of course, this is just an estimate – some of us will need more than 80%, some of us will need less. Either way, taking the time to consider how your expenses will change in retirement will help you create a retirement budget that’s right for you. Here are some things to consider when deciding how much income you need after retirement:Post-Retirement Activities – Do you plan on traveling the world after you retire? Maybe you want to finally learn how to golf? Or maybe you’d rather sit on your front porch every day and read all the books you never got around to before. Whatever your retirement dreams are, think about the price tag that might come with your new hobbies.​   Residency – Where are you going to live? Consider the cost of living and state taxes of wherever you plan on spending the rest of your life.   Housing – Will you rent or buy? If you think you’ll be renting for the rest of your life, don’t forget to account for future rent increases. If you plan on owning a home, include your mortgage payment, property taxes, HOA fees, and homeowner’s insurance payments in your estimated housing expenses. You might be planning on selling your house and downsizing, in which case don’t forget to include the extra proceeds from the sale as income in your budget!   Healthcare – It can be hard to predict how much you will have to pay out of pocket for healthcare after retirement. You should first become familiar with your retiree healthcare plan, whatever that may be. Depending on your health concerns, you might want to purchase supplemental health insurance. Don’t forget you may be eligible for Medicare at age 65, but it isn’t free. Consider the deductible and monthly payments associated with your plan. Also, healthcare costs tend to increase with age, so it’s not a bad idea to overestimate your budget in this area.Once you’ve considered the additional expenses associated with your post-retirement life, add in your regular recurring monthly expenses such as food, toiletries, car payments, insurance, repairs, etc., and don’t be afraid to be overly cautious – it’s always better to end up under budget rather than over. The final number is your income target. Now, you can strategize based on the income sources you identified in Step 1 to ensure you meet that goal. This may include meeting with an SDCERS retirement counselor to figure out when you will be able to retire with a monthly pension benefit that aligns with your post-retirement budget.   More...

July 2022 Board & Committee Meetings - In Person

Date: Jun 30, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled July 2022 Board and Committee meetings in a conference room at SDCERS’ downtown office building. This means that this month’s Board and Committee meetings will not be held remotely – Board and Committee members, as well as some SDCERS staff, will be on-site and the public is welcome to attend in person as well. You can find the agendas for the July 2022 meetings here.  Meeting Location & Parking SDCERS’ usual Board Meeting Room is currently under construction. Therefore, the July meetings will be held in the same building, at 401 West A Street, San Diego, CA 92101, but in Suite 120, which is on the main floor (lobby level) – please don’t hesitate to ask a building staff member at the security/information desk for directions if you have trouble locating the room. You can park in the building’s underground parking garage – if you do so, please be sure to bring your parking ticket with you to the meeting, write your name at the top, and place it in the basket labeled “Parking Validation” in the meeting room. At the end of the meeting, you can retrieve your validated ticket and use it to exit the parking garage at no cost. You can find driving directions and parking instructions on this page.  Meeting Dates July 6th –        Audit Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST   July 7th –        Disability Committee meeting at 9:00 a.m. PST                         Business & Governance Committee meeting at                         9:15 a.m. PST                         Investment Committee meeting 12:30 p.m. PST   July 8th –        Board of Administration meeting at 8:30 a.m. PST   You may request to participate in public comment, either by attending the meeting in person and providing a completed Request to Speak form to the Board Assistant before the meeting begins, or by submitting a written statement ahead of time. To request a written statement to be read aloud at a meeting, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the corresponding meeting. Please include the following information in your request: Your contact information and the meeting during which you would like your comment to be read aloud. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting.   More...

Fiscal Year 2023 Health Allowances for Eligible City Retirees

Date: May 27, 2022 Categories: Health, News Articles, Open Enrollment, Press Release

This article is only applicable to City retirees who have a health reimbursement plan through the City.   The City of San Diego and the San Diego Public Employee Benefits Association (SDPEBA) are changing the effective date of their retiree healthcare plan offerings. Starting January 1, 2023, the sponsored retiree healthcare plans will be effective based on the calendar year, rather than the fiscal year. However, the annual allowances for retiree healthcare will continue to be offered on the fiscal year, resetting each July 1st.   Below are the fiscal year 2023 retiree healthcare allowances (effective July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023). Remember, if you would like to change plans before this year’s Open Enrollment in November, you may do so from June 1, 2022 through June 30, 2022. You will be able to choose from the current plan offerings. You can review information about the current plans and download enrollment/disenrollment forms on this page. All forms must be received by 5:00 p.m. (PST) on Thursday, June 30, 2022. All changes timely submitted will be effective August 1, 2022. You may submit your forms via email (attached as a PDF) to health@sdcers.org, by mail to SDCERS Health Division, 401 West A Street, Suite 400, San Diego, CA 92101 or by fax to (858) 581-5314.  If you do not want to make any changes to your current healthcare, dental, or vision plan, you do not have to take any action during Open Enrollment and your coverage will remain the same.   For plans beginning in January 2023, you will receive the full Open Enrollment booklet in November 2022 with information on plans and premiums. If you do not want to make any changes to your current healthcare, dental, or vision plan for 2023, you do not need to take any action in November 2022 and your coverage will remain the same for 2023.   If you have any questions, you can contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. PST. However, as this is a significant change to retiree health, we anticipate a higher than usual call volume over the next several months. If your question is not urgent, we recommend submitting your request electronically via the Contact Us page; SDCERS staff generally will respond to electronic inquiries within one business day. Please note that at this time, SDCERS’ physical downtown offices are still closed to members and the public.   More...

Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) for Fiscal Year 2023

Date: May 13, 2022 Categories: Board, COLA, News Articles, Pension, Press Release

At its May 13, 2022 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved the Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) that will be applied to eligible SDCERS retirees’ (including active DROP participants) monthly pension benefit amount from July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023. Your pension benefit will receive a COLA for Fiscal Year 2023 if your retirement or DROP entry date is on or before June 30, 2022.   Per San Diego Municipal Code section 24.1505 and section 1301 of the Port and Airport Plans, the COLA is calculated every year based on the change in the cost of living between the two previous Decembers, as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index (“CPI”), United States – All items. However, the maximum allowable increase in any given year is 2.0%.   In years where the COLA is greater than the maximum 2.0% (such as this year), the amount over 2% is added to what is called a “COLA bank.” A retiree’s COLA bank accumulates based on their fiscal year of retirement (or DROP entry), and each annual retiree group has its own COLA bank. In years that the CPI’s published COLA is less than 2%, each retiree group’s COLA bank may be able to increase the actual COLA received by the retiree up to a maximum of 2%, if that retiree group’s COLA bank has accrued enough funds from previous years where the published COLA was greater than 2%.   According to the CPI, the change in cost of living between December 31, 2020 and December 31, 2021 was 7.0% (rounded to the nearest 1/10th of a percent). This means that everyone who is retired or participating in DROP as of June 30, 2022 will receive the maximum 2% COLA increase to their pension benefit, and bank the additional 5.0%.*  *The two members who are in the 1981 retirement plan will receive a COLA increase of 3.2%.   This is significant because that means those who receive the fiscal year 2023 COLA and add the additional 5.0% to their COLA banks are guaranteed to receive a 2% COLA in fiscal years 2024 and 2025, at the very least (assuming we do not experience a negative COLA in either year). Let’s look at a theoretical scenario to really see the significance – please remember that we have absolutely no way of predicting what the CPI’s published COLA will be in future years and this is very much a hypothetical example: If Sam Diego retires or enters DROP in June of 2022 and his monthly pension benefit is $5,000: You can see how the 5% addition to Sam’s COLA bank right off the bat can help ensure his benefit receives the maximum 2% increase in future years, when the published COLA is less than 2%. In the example above, we assumed that the published COLA applicable to fiscal years 2024-2029 was always between 1.4% and 2.0%. Note that if the published COLA is less in any given years, more would be subtracted from Sam’s COLA bank for those years. Conversely, if the published COLA is greater than 2.0% in any of the given years, then the amount above 2.0% would be once again added to his bank.   This article is not an attempt to persuade you to retire or enter DROP before July 1, 2022 – there are certainly other factors to consider, such as your age, upcoming salary increases, etc. (please review this article discussing factors to consider before deciding when to retire or enter DROP). However, as this is the highest published COLA we’ve seen since 1982, and it is very rare for a retiree to add such a large amount to their COLA bank in a single year, it’s worth noting and may factor into your decision to retire or enter DROP before July 1, 2022. (Note: You must enter DROP at the beginning of a pay period - so, if you enter in June 2022, your entry date must be either June 11 or June 25, 2022.)   If you are eligible to receive a fiscal year 2023 COLA, the applicable increase will be reflected in your July 2022 pension payment.   More...

SDCERS' Board Elects Paul Kaufmann Board President

Date: May 13, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

After many years of service, longtime Board Member and previous Board President Carina Coleman is leaving SDCERS' Board of Administration. On behalf of all SDCERS staff, we sincerely thank you for volunteering your time to serve on our Board.  At today's Board meeting, Paul Kaufmann (formerly Board Vice President) was unanimously elected to assume the position of Board President. Mr. Kaufmann also currently serves on SDCERS' Business & Governance Committee and previously served on SDCERS' Audit Committee for many years. He is also a Community Advisory Board Member at Sanford Burnham Prebys, a non-profit medical research institution that is dedicated to finding cures for human diseases. In his free time, Mr. Kaufmann works as an Adjunct Professor at Brandman University’s Business School in Irvine, CA.  SDCERS' Board and staff looks forward to continue working with Paul Kaufmann as we all strive to fulfill SDCERS' mission of delivering benefits timely and accurately, and ensuring the trust fund's safety, integrity, and growth. More...

May 2022 Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: May 06, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled May 2022 Board and Committee meetings remotely. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  May 12th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/89364107160  May 12th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/83157319370 Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will also be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on May 12th at 9:15 a.m. PST, and the Board meeting on May 13th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   You may request to participate in public comment, either live (via Zoom) or written statement. To request time to speak, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting you are requesting participation in.  If you only wish for your written comments to be read aloud at the meeting, you can send us a message via our Contact Us page up to one hour before the relevant meeting. Include the following information in your request: your contact information, which meeting you wish to participate in, and if you would like your statement read aloud at the meeting or if you would like to speak during the meeting. If you are requesting to speak aloud at the meeting, someone from SDCERS will contact you with instructions for how to join the corresponding meeting. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting.   More...

City Retiree Healthcare Plans Switching to Calendar Year Schedule - Open Enrollment to Be Held in November 2022

Date: Apr 15, 2022 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

Note: This is only applicable to City retirees who are enrolled in, or plan to enroll in, a City retiree health insurance plan.   SDCERS recently mailed a letter to all City retirees explaining the upcoming changes to City retiree healthcare. Historically, the City’s retiree health insurance plans have been implemented according to the fiscal year, with open enrollment traditionally held in June and plan changes effective the following August. However, beginning January 1, 2023, the City’s retiree health insurance plans will be effective based on the calendar year instead.  This means the City’s retiree health plans will begin each January 1st, instead of August 1st. If you are currently participating in a City retiree health plan, or if you intend to enroll in a City retiree health plan in the future, the following applies to you:In order to smooth the transition, the City’s sponsored retiree healthcare plans and premiums will remain unchanged through December 31, 2022.The annual Open Enrollment period will now take place in November, rather than June – at this time, we expect this year’s Open Enrollment will begin on November 1, 2022 and end November 30, 2022; however, you will be notified via mail when the dates have been confirmed.The Comprehensive Retiree Health Book for plan year 2023 will be mailed to you around November 1, 2022.If you are satisfied with your current plan, you do NOT need to do anything right now – you will receive further instructions and information about available health plans and premiums for plan year 2023 prior to Open Enrollment in November.If you would like to change plans before this year’s Open Enrollment in November, you may do so in June 2022 – you will be able to choose from the current plan offerings shown in the 2021-2022 Comprehensive Retiree Health Book. Additional information about available plans can be found here, plan provider videos can be viewed here, and enrollment forms can be downloaded and printed at the bottom of this page.You can send health enrollment or disenrollment forms to SDCERS by mail, fax, or email – please review the directions for sending health-related documents on this page.Please be advised that if you change plans in June 2022, the effective date of your new plan will be August 1, 2022 – December 31, 2022. You may still participate in the November 2022 Open Enrollment. IMPORTANT: The annual healthcare allowances will continue to be effective according to the fiscal year (July 1st – June 30th). Keep in mind that your healthcare premium may change in December, but your allowance will remain the same until the following July. You will receive another letter in the next month or so regarding your fiscal year 2023 healthcare allowance, if applicable to you.   If you have any questions, you can contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. PST. However, as this is a significant change to retiree health, we anticipate a higher than usual call volume over the next several months. If your question is not urgent, we recommend submitting your request electronically via the Contact Us page; SDCERS staff will generally respond to electronic inquiries within one business day. Please note that at this time, SDCERS’ physical downtown offices are still closed to members and the public. More...

City Retirees Enrolling in Private Health Plans May Be Eligible to Participate in New Automatic Reimbursement Process

Date: Apr 11, 2022 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

This article is only applicable to City retirees who have a health reimbursement plan through the City.   Beginning with plan year 2023, the City is allowing SDCERS to offer an Annual Privately Secured reimbursement option for certain health plans. This will allow eligible members to receive an automatic reimbursement each month throughout the plan year, without having to provide monthly proof of payment. Eligible City retirees will receive a letter in November 2022 describing the new Annual Privately Secured reimbursement option, which will be fully implemented in January 2023, when the new plan year begins.   In order to qualify for the automatic reimbursement, you must be a City retiree enrolling in a private health insurance plan that has the same monthly premium for a 12-month period. Retirees enrolled in a health plan with fluctuating premium amounts do not qualify and will need to continue submitting monthly reimbursement requests.  Note: If you are a City retiree enrolling in a new plan before January 2023, you may be eligible for early participation in the Annual Privately Secured automatic reimbursement option when your new plan begins – please contact the SDCERS Health Team at health@sdcers.org for more information. However, if you already enrolled in your new plan for 2022, you will not be able to begin participating in the automatic reimbursement process until your plan renews.   More...

SDCERS Board Member Lisa Marie Harris Honored as San Diego's "CFO of the Year"

Date: Mar 25, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

Each year, the San Diego Business Journal honors the financial executives who work behind the scenes — the Chief Financial Officers (“CFO’s). Now in its 17th year, the “CFO of the Year Award” recognizes contributions to company growth, leadership, and community involvement by top financial executives in the San Diego area. This year, a panel of independent judges drawn from the region’s top financial leaders selected SDCERS’ Board Member Lisa Marie Harris as their top public sector CFO! This is a well-deserved recognition for Lisa Marie Harris and only further demonstrates how lucky we are to have her on our Board of Administration and Investment Committee. You can read more about her, as well as our other Board Members, on this page. Congratulations Lisa Marie!   More...

Things to Consider Before Deciding When to Retire (or Enter DROP)

Date: Mar 11, 2022 Categories: Retirement Resources

A common question we get from our members is, “when should I retire/enter DROP?” Unfortunately, this is a question we cannot answer for you. What we can do is point out certain factors you should take into account when making this decision for yourself, but ultimately, it is a decision you must make on your own. Here are a few important considerations that may affect your decision:COLA – the annual cost of living adjustment (“COLA”) applies to all retirees’ monthly pension benefit every July 1st and may increase your benefit up to 2%. Some members choose to retire on or before June 30th so that their benefit receives the COLA immediately after their retirement.Annual Interest – on the flip side, some members wait to retire until after June 30th of a given year so that their contribution account receives the annual interest (currently 6.5%), which only applies to members who are not retired on July 1st. The additional interest added to a member’s COL Annuity and Surviving Spouse Annuity contributions may increase their initial benefit calculation even more than the COLA would have, had they retired before July 1st.Salary Increases – did you recently receive a significant salary increase? If so, you may want to continue working and receiving that higher salary for a longer time period before retiring, so that the higher salary is factored into your benefit calculation. Remember, depending on your plan tier, the “Final Compensation” used to calculate your benefit is your highest pensionable salary averaged over either three years or 12 consecutive months. Therefore, if you retire shortly after receiving a raise, it won’t significantly increase your pension benefit.Birthday – your retirement factor, another element of your pension benefit formula, is determined based on your plan tier and age at retirement, prorated in quarterly increments. When deciding on your retirement date, consider your exact age – for example, if your plan tier’s retirement factor increases between 60 and 61, and you retire when you are 60 years and 6 months old, the factor used in your benefit calculation will be slightly higher than what would be used if you retired at 60 years and 5 months old. (Note: Your quarter age is rounded down for the purposes of this calculation.) Of course, all of these considerations must be balanced by your personal circumstances and desires – such as the minimum post-retirement income you can comfortably live with and how much longer you want to continue working. More...

March 2022 Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Mar 04, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled March 2022 Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Audit, Disability, and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  March 9th, 9:00 a.m. PST Audit Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/81986570342  March 10th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/82626964405  March 10th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link:https://us06web.zoom.us/j/83991781255   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will also be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on March 10th at 9:15 a.m. PST, and the Board meeting on March 11th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   You may request to participate in public comment, either live (via Zoom) or written statement. To request time to speak, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting you are requesting participation in.  If you only wish for your written comments to be read aloud at the meeting, you can send us a message via our Contact Us page up to one hour before the relevant meeting. Include the following information in your request: your contact information, which meeting you wish to participate in, and if you would like your statement read aloud at the meeting or if you would like to speak during the meeting.  If you are requesting to speak aloud at the meeting, someone from SDCERS will contact you with instructions for how to join the corresponding meeting. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting.   More...

Active Member Beneficiaries & the Importance of Keeping Your Beneficiaries Updated

Date: Feb 24, 2022 Categories: Member Portal, Pension, Retirement Resources

When was the last time you thought about your SDCERS beneficiary designations? Over a year ago? Five years? The day you enrolled in SDCERS? Maybe never? Beneficiary designations may seem like a chore you can put off or do once and forget about, but the truth is you should review your beneficiary designations at least once a year to make sure they reflect your current circumstances. For example, beneficiary designations probably aren’t the first thing on your mind when you get married or divorced, have a child, or lose a loved one, but these are all defining life events that may affect who you want to receive your pension benefits when you die. Active Members (meaning those who are actively employed by the City, Port,* or Airport and contributing to SDCERS, but are not in DROP) are eligible to leave one of three types of death benefits if they die before retiring or entering DROP, and the eligibility requirements are very specific for two of the three types. Importantly, if you die without having designated your surviving spouse as your sole primary beneficiary, then your surviving spouse will not be eligible to receive the lifetime Death While Eligible or Industrial Death Benefit, even if all other eligibility requirements are satisfied. Below is a summary of the death benefits provided to Active Members, but please review the Death Benefits Fact Sheet for more in-depth information.   *General Port employees hired or rehired on or after January 1, 2009 must complete five consecutive years of Port employment after each hire or rehire date before they become Members of SDCERS and are eligible to leave a death benefit.Active Death Benefit – Paid upon the death of a Member who is not yet eligible to retire and whose death is not related to work (or in the event all pre-requisites for the Death While Eligible or Industrial Death Benefit are not satisfied).Death While Eligible Benefit – Paid upon the death of a Member who is already eligible to retire when they die and whose death is not related to work.Industrial Death Benefit – Paid upon the death of a Member whose death is due to work-related causes, as determined by the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board.(Please review the full article and/or the Death Benefits Fact Sheet for more information about these death benefits.) As you can imagine, it may take a while to sort out who gets what if you die without updating your beneficiary designations. Luckily, designating a beneficiary is quick, easy, and you can do it from home by logging in to your SDCERS Member Portal account and clicking “Beneficiary Information” from the left menu. You will be able to name beneficiaries to receive different types of death benefits depending on if you are active, in DROP, or retired. You can designate both a primary and an alternate beneficiary. When you die, your primary beneficiary is first in line to collect the death benefit, while your alternate receives the benefit only if the primary is already deceased. For most death benefits, you can name multiple beneficiaries and designate a specific percentage of the benefit to each person. If you choose to do this, make sure your percentages add up to 100%. Lastly, you may also designate a trust to receive any death benefit that is not a continuance or an annuity. However, you will be required to provide SDCERS with a copy of the trust or certificate of trust.   More...

Prop B Agreement Reached Between City and Some Labor Unions

Date: Feb 01, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Pension, Press Release, Proposition B

The MEA recently posted an article on their website announcing a tentative agreement regarding the invalidation of Proposition B (“Prop B”). You can review this article here. Yesterday, the City Council approved an agreement with the MEA and Local 127 regarding the unwinding of Prop B – you can review the materials associated with this agenda item from yesterday’s meeting, including a summary of the agreement, the draft resolution adopting the agreement, and the staff report on this resolution. The City is still in negotiations with the other relevant labor unions and will release more information once agreements are reached.   Please be advised that SDCERS was not a party to any negotiations, and we do not have any additional information about any tentative or final agreements reached other than what has already been made available to the public. That being said, if you are a Prop B employee (non-sworn City employees initially hired between July 20, 2012 and July 10, 2021) and you do end up becoming an SDCERS member, you will join the most recent plan tier according to your member classification – General, Safety Police, Safety Fire, or Safety Lifeguard. Please review your pension plan summary according to your initial hire date here, where you can see your plan tier’s current contribution rates, retirement factors, eligibility requirements, and more. Active Prop B employees will also have educational trainings assigned to them in Success Factors that must be completed.   To reiterate, SDCERS administers the City’s pension system pursuant to the relevant provisions of the City Charter and San Diego Municipal Code – it does not play a part in negotiating the pension benefits it is charged with administering. Therefore, we will be unable to answer any questions related to the outcome of any negotiations between the City and relevant labor unions regarding Prop B. Please direct any questions regarding Prop B to your respective labor union representative or to the City’s Risk Management Department, which you can contact via email at PropB@sandiego.gov. If you would prefer to ask your questions over the phone, please submit an appointment request using this form: www.sandiego.gov/risk-management/open-enrollment/appointment-request.   SDCERS will not have your name or any information about you in our system until we receive the formal transmittal from the City, which likely will not be until the beginning of September 2022 – approximately two months after you officially join the system on July 9, 2022. This is because joining the system will require a transfer from your SPSP-H account (managed by Principal), and it will take time for the City and Principal to process the requisite paperwork before the transmittal is sent to SDCERS; the transmittal is what provides SDCERS with the identities of the new members and their information. Until that time, SDCERS will not be able to answer any specific questions about your account. Please be sure to view the educational materials available via Success Factors in your SAP account, which provide all of the available information about this transition.   More...

Results of 2021 General Board Member Election

Date: Jan 14, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

On December 16th, voting concluded in the election for SDCERS' active General Board Member seat. All active General Members (City, Port, and Airport) were eligible to vote in the General Board Member elections. Thank you to all who participated in these elections, and especially to both candidates for volunteering their time.   The candidate who received the majority of votes for the General Board Member seat was Thomas Battaglia. The full Board recertified the election results at today’s meeting. You may recognize his name from past Board meetings, because Thomas previously served as one of our two active General Board Members from January 2017 to March 2021. As he is replacing former Board Member Sarah Mayen, who terminated City service before her four-year term ended, Thomas will serve the remainder of Sarah Mayen’s term, ending March 31, 2025.   Congratulations to our newest elected Board Member and thank you in advance for your voluntary service on SDCERS’ Board of Administration! More...

2021 1099-R Forms

Date: Jan 13, 2022 Categories: 1099R, News Articles, Press Release

All IRS Form 1099-R’s for tax year 2021 have been mailed. This means all SDCERS retirees and beneficiaries who received a payment from SDCERS in calendar year 2021 should be receiving their 2021 1099-R forms via U.S. mail over the next couple of weeks. To access your 1099-R form sooner, please log in to your Member Portal account, click on “Tax Reporting” on the left, and select “2021 1099R” to download an electronic copy. You can also update your tax withholding preferences on your Member Portal by clicking on “Tax Withholding.” This guide explains how to update your tax withholding preferences.   For a detailed explanation of the pertinent information in your 1099-R, as well as answers to frequently asked questions regarding this tax form, please review our 1099-R Fact Sheet. If you have additional questions, please contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600 or submit your questions electronically via our Contact Us web form. More...

January 2022 Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Jan 07, 2022 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled January 2022 Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  January 13th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/89423822375  January 13th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/82991287838   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will also be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on January 13th at 9:15 a.m. PST, and the Board meeting on January 14th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   You may request to participate in public comment, either live (via Zoom) or written statement. To request time to speak, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting you are requesting participation in.  If you only wish for your written comments to be read aloud at the meeting, you can send us a message via our Contact Us page up to one hour before the relevant meeting. Include the following information in your request: your contact information, which meeting you wish to participate in, and if you would like your statement read aloud at the meeting or if you would like to speak during the meeting.  If you are requesting to speak aloud at the meeting, someone from SDCERS will contact you with instructions for how to join the corresponding meeting. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting.   More...

SDCERS Offices Remain Closed

Date: Jan 07, 2022 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

Please be advised that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, our downtown offices remain closed to all but essential staff members required to be in the office in order to perform daily tasks. The majority of SDCERS’ staff continues to work remotely and, unfortunately, our members are still not permitted on site. However, our Call Center continues to be open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. To help decrease call volume, please submit non-urgent questions or concerns via our Contact Us page, which we continue to monitor and generally respond to within one business day.   We will continue to conduct retirement counseling appointments telephonically, which we have been doing since March of 2020. The phone counseling sessions have been well-received, and document signing takes place via email exchange. If you already have a retirement counseling appointment scheduled, you will be contacted in advance with details. If you have recently submitted your online application, you will be contacted soon to schedule your appointment.   If you are thinking about retiring or entering DROP soon, please review the fact sheets, FAQs, and videos on our website, which will help answer many of your questions in advance. Keep an eye out for retirement educational webinars, which are announced periodically via your work email. You can also estimate your future retirement benefit by using the Benefit Calculator on the Member Portal. If you have not already registered on our secure Member Portal, click on “Register” on the Member Portal page and follow the registration instructions.   Once you have reviewed all of the pertinent information, if you want to schedule a retirement counseling appointment (including for service retirements, DROP entries, and DROP exits), you must submit an online retirement application through your Member Portal account by clicking “Online Applications” on the left panel. Keep in mind this electronic application is not final – your submission simply prompts us to contact you to schedule a counseling appointment.  CITY RETIREE HEALTH REIMBURSEMENTS: City Retiree Health Reimbursement requests are being processed as usual. For fastest processing, submit your documents via email (attached as a PDF) to health@sdcers.org. Please ensure you have submitted complete documents – we will contact you if we receive incomplete submissions, which may result in delayed reimbursements. Alternatively, you may fax your documents to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our office at 401 West A Street, Ste. 400, San Diego, CA 92101.   More...

SDCERS' IT Department Receives 2021 MISAC Quality IT Practices Award

Date: Dec 17, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS is proud to announce it has received the Municipal Information System Association of California (MISAC) Quality Information Technology Practices Award for the fourth year in a row. MISAC is a collaborative organization of California local government IT professionals with the goal of promoting leadership, information sharing, and access to resources to enhance local government services and effectiveness. Membership includes cities, towns, public safety, special districts, and other local governmental agencies/districts.  MISAC's Quality IT Practices program is meant to document and acknowledgement MISAC agencies that are following IT best practices. Applicants are required to submit a detailed questionnaire and supporting material. Agency’s strengths are benchmarked to System Administration, Audit, Network, and Security (SANS) Institute standards. The SANS Institute is a cooperative research and education organization of security practitioners from varied worldwide organizations, corporations, and universities working together to help the global information security community.   Receiving MISAC Quality IT Practices Award is an honor and tribute to the dedication and performance of SDCERS’ IT staff and contractors. More...

Voting is Now Open for Active General Board Member Election

Date: Dec 02, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

The election for SDCERS' open active General Board Member seat has begun. All active General Members (City, Port, and Airport) are eligible to vote for one of two candidates who will represent them on SDCERS' Board through May 2025.   If you are an active General Member, a letter was mailed to you on November 30th. This letter explains the voting process, lists information about the two candidates, and contains a unique validation number. Please retain this letter, as you will need your unique validation number in order to cast your vote. You should expect to receive this letter within the next few days – if you have not received a letter by December 7th, or if you received the letter but no longer have access to it, please contact the elections help line at 1-866-720-4357, Monday – Friday, between 6:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. PST. You can also email SDCERShelp@electionservicescorp.com. The candidates for the two General Board Member seats are: 1) Thomas Battaglia; and 2) Dawne Clark Votes may be cast by phone or online – specific information about the voting process is contained in your letter. All votes must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on December 16, 2021. More...

City Retirees: Notice RE Medicare Part B Recipients

Date: Dec 02, 2021 Categories: Health, News Articles, Press Release

If you are a City retiree currently receiving health reimbursements for Medicare Part B premiums, you should have recently received a letter in the mail from SDCERS. The Medicare Part B premiums are increasing from $148.50 to $170.10 per month, beginning in January 2022. In order for you to be reimbursed at the higher rate, you must submit the 2022 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS, confirming the changes to your premiums.   To obtain your 2022 Benefit Verification Letter, visit www.ssa.gov, and from the homepage sign in or sign up for a personal “my Social Security” account. Once you’ve accessed your account, follow the instructions to access your Benefit Verification Letter. You can also call your local Social Security office.   We are anticipating a large number of submissions this year due to the premium increase. If you submit all of the proper paperwork to SDCERS by January 10, 2022, we will attempt to have the new premium amount reflected on your January 2022 pension benefit payment. If your paperwork is received after this date or we were unable to process your request timely, then the adjusted reimbursement amount will be included in the following payroll cycle once all required documentation is received.   You may submit your 2022 Benefit Verification Letter to SDCERS in the following ways:Fax a copy to: (858) 581-5314Mail a copy to: 401 West A Street, Suite 400, San Diego, CA 92101 Attn: HealthE-mail a scanned copy to: health@sdcers.orgIMPORTANT: If you submit your Benefit Verification Letter (and/or any other health-related paperwork) via email, please be sure any attachments are in PDF format only. You should receive an automated confirmation email within 24 hours of your email submission; however, if you do not receive this confirmation email, it does not mean we didn’t receive your email. First, please check your spam or junk folder to see if the confirmation email ended up there.  Please refrain from calling us to confirm that your Benefit Verification Letter has been received, as the staff who answer the phones are also processing the documents, and additional phone calls may cause delays. If you believe you provided us with timely documentation, but are not reimbursed the increased amount in your January 2022 pension payment, then please contact us in February.   More...

SDCERS' 2021 (Virtual) Annual Membership Meeting

Date: Nov 15, 2021 Categories: Events, News Articles, Pension, Press Release

Just like last year, SDCERS’ 2021 Annual Membership Meeting took place virtually as a recorded Zoom meeting. This was not a live event; instead, you can watch the presentations at your leisure via our YouTube channel by clicking here. The theme of the meeting was "Today, Tomorrow, Together.” Here is a sneak preview of this year's presentations:Liza Crisafi, Chief Investment Officer, provided a summary of SDCERS' investment performance in fiscal year 2021.Marcelle Voorhies Rossman, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, explained how SDCERS plans for the future, and the differences between retirees in the past compared to retirees in the now.Gregg Rademacher, Chief Executive Officer, talked about how SDCERS adapted during the COVID-19 pandemic, and reassured SDCERS’ membership that its pension system will is planning for tomorrow, today, in order to make sure benefits are paid accurately and timely, and ensure the trust fund’s safety, integrity, and growth.Cynthia Queen, Member Services Director, went over all of the resources available on SDCERS’ website, gave a brief overview of the Member Portal for both active and retired members, and encouraged all members to register for their own Member Portal account if they haven’t already.We encourage you to take the time to watch the meeting and let us know what you think via our Contact Us page. This is an annual event that is usually held in person, giving us an opportunity to engage with our membership. We hope you enjoy the presentations! ​ More...

SDCERS Board Approves Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett Settlement Increase for 2021

At its November 5, 2021 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved payment of the Annual Supplemental Benefit for eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries. The Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid in years when the fund’s investment earnings are sufficient to qualify, according to a set formula defined in the plan documents.   In addition, the Corbett Settlement Increase (“Corbett benefit”) is paid to eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries in years that the Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid. If you are eligible for one or both of these benefits, payment will be included in your November 2021 monthly pension benefit.   The eligibility requirements for the Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett benefit are described in our FAQs under “Annual Supplemental Benefit, Corbett, COLA, COL Annuity.” Here, you will also find a description of how these benefits are calculated.   In addition to the requirements outlined in the FAQ’s, in order to be eligible for the Annual Supplemental Benefit, a retiree or continuance beneficiary must have been (1) alive, and (2) eligible to receive a monthly pension benefit on October 1, 2021. If an eligible retiree died on or after October 1, 2021, the retiree’s continuance beneficiary is not eligible for their own Annual Supplemental Benefit this year. In this case, the retiree’s Annual Supplemental Benefit payment will be included in the $2,000 Retiree Death Benefit and Other Payable Monies, which is paid to the beneficiary(ies) named to receive that death benefit.   More...

DROP Interest Rates for Calendar Year 2022

Date: Nov 05, 2021 Categories: Board, DROP, News Articles, Press Release

At today’s meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration voted to approve staff’s recommended DROP account and DROP annuity interest rates for the next calendar year – meaning these rates will be effective January 1, 2022. The DROP account rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS while a Member is in DROP and the DROP Annuity rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS to annuitize the DROP monies of a Member who has exited DROP and retired. These rates are calculated annually using publicly available indexes as of September 30th of each year. (See Board Rule 6.10(c) and 6.40(b) for more information about how these rates are calculated.)   Therefore, effective January 1, 2022, the annual DROP account interest rate (compounded quarterly) will be decreased slightly to 0.8%, compared to the current rate of 1.0%. This interest rate will be compounded quarterly and applied to all active DROP participants’ accounts as long as the participant is actively employed by the City of San Diego, San Diego Unified Port District, or the San Diego Regional Airport Authority on the last day of each quarter. This rate is subject to change annually, which means a DROP participant’s account may receive a different interest rate every year during their participation period.   The DROP annuity interest rate will stay the same at 2.1%. This interest rate will be applied to the funds remaining in a DROP retiree’s account when they exit DROP, if the retiree chooses to annuitize all or part of their DROP account, and it will be factored into the calculation of their monthly DROP annuity.   Unlike the DROP account interest rate, the DROP annuity rate will not change for an individual member – the rate that is in effect when a member exits DROP is the rate that will be applied to their annuity, regardless of whether or not the DROP annuity rate changes in future years. Therefore, when you are getting close to your DROP retirement date, your decision to exit DROP before or after the New Year may be affected by the Board’s decision to increase or decrease the DROP annuity interest rate. However, if you do not plan to annuitize your DROP account upon exiting DROP, then the DROP annuity rate changes will not affect you. Click here to review your options regarding how you can receive the funds in your DROP account when you exit DROP.  Please attend a DROP Exit webinar if you are nearing your target DROP exit date:  November 16th at 1:30 p.m.: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1042833321240571663  November 19th at 1:30 p.m.: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1325148324834998287  December 15th at 11:00 a.m.: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5940220839076014095   If you are currently in DROP and considering retiring soon, you must begin the process by first going to your Member Portal account and clicking on “DROP Retirement Application” from the left menu, under Tools. Review this information, make your selections, and submit the initial application online. Once received, you will be contacted by an SDCERS staff member to schedule your personal phone counseling appointment. At your appointment, you can ask questions and make any changes you’d like to your application. Your electronic application is not final and you have not retired until you’ve submitted your signed application signature page, which will be emailed to you by your retirement counselor during or after your appointment. More...

November 2021 Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Oct 29, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled November Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  November 4th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86563232535  November 4th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/84846655722   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will also be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on November 4th at 9:15 a.m. PST, and the Board meeting on November 5th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page. ​ You may request to participate in public comment, either live (via Zoom) or written statement. To request time to speak, use the Contact Us page on our website to submit your public comment request at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting you are requesting participation in.  If you only wish for your written comments to be read aloud at the meeting, you can send us a message via our Contact Us page up to one hour before the relevant meeting. Include the following information in your request: your contact information, which meeting you wish to participate in, and if you would like your statement read aloud at the meeting or if you would like to speak during the meeting.  If you are requesting to speak aloud at the meeting, someone from SDCERS will contact you with instructions for how to join the corresponding meeting. All appropriate messages timely received will be responded to and/or read aloud at the appropriate meeting. More...

Information for City of San Diego Members Who Are Considering Terminating Employment (Due to Vaccine Mandates or Otherwise)

Date: Oct 27, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Pension, Press Release, Retirement Resources

If you are considering ending your employment with the City, due to the pending vaccine mandates or for any other reason, please review our Termination & Deferred Membership fact sheet as well as your plan tier’s Retirement Plan Summary, according to your plan sponsor, membership classification, and initial hire date.   Whether you are terminated for cause or voluntarily end your employment, the circumstances surrounding your departure do not affect your eligibility to receive any SDCERS pension benefits to which you are entitled. As long as you accrue enough service credit (including purchased and reciprocal service credit) to meet your plan tier’s minimum eligibility requirements, you can begin receiving your monthly pension benefit as soon as you become age-eligible. Again, please refer to your Retirement Plan Summary for information about eligibility requirements, as they differ according to plan sponsor and plan tier. You can also log in to your Member Portal account to see if you are currently service-eligible and also to use the benefit estimate calculator, which you can use to run different retirement scenarios and see an estimate of what your monthly pension benefit might be according to each scenario.   If you are (or will be) service and age-eligible to retire when you separate employment, and you are not currently participating in DROP, please submit your electronic service retirement application via your Member Portal account ASAP. You must have a counseling appointment and submit your completed, signed retirement application (not the electronic version – the final application you will discuss with your counselor at your appointment) prior to your retirement date. Ideally, your retirement date should be the day after your termination date. However, if your final application is dated and submitted later, the delayed submission will result in missed days of pension payments.   If you are currently participating in DROP, your retirement date will automatically be the day after your termination date – this is true regardless of if you quit your job or if you are fired. You do need to submit an electronic DROP retirement application and meet with a counselor as soon as possible after termination, but this does not necessarily need to happen prior to your termination date. In this case, a DROP retirement application submitted after your termination date will not result in missed days of pension payments, but it could delay your payments altogether until we have received the requisite paperwork from you.   If you are service-eligible, but not age-eligible to retire upon termination, you do not need an appointment just yet – you will become a “deferred vested” member once you separate employment. No matter where you are in the world, you will be eligible to retire and begin receiving your monthly pension benefit when you become age-eligible. Please log in to your Member Portal account a few months before you become age-eligible and submit your service retirement application. Submitting the electronic application will trigger a staff member to contact you and schedule your retirement counseling appointment.   If you are not service-eligible to retire when you terminate employment and you have no intention of establishing reciprocity elsewhere, you should consider your options regarding your member contributions on deposit with SDCERS. You can leave the funds with SDCERS, where they will earn annual interest at the current discount rate every July (the current rate at the time this article was written is 6.5%), or you can withdraw or rollover the funds (including interest) to an eligible account. If possible, it would be best to schedule a retirement counseling appointment prior to your termination, where your counselor will explain your options in more detail. However, please note that our counseling schedule is typically very busy in November and December, so be sure to plan in advance and review the relevant information on our website ASAP. To schedule an appointment due to terminating employment, you can contact our Call Center, open on regular business days from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., at (619) 525-3600. More...

SDCERS Receives the 2021 Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration

Date: Oct 12, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

For the fourth year in a row, SDCERS has been awarded the Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration. The Public Pension Coordinating Council grants this award, which recognizes SDCERS for meeting professional standards for plan funding and administration as set forth in the Public Pension Standards.​Recognition Award for Administration SDCERS received the Recognition Award for Administration due to its adherence to the five essential administrative categories:Comprehensive Benefit ProgramActuarialAuditInvestmentsCommunicationsSee the full article for more information. More...

Upcoming Election for Active General Board Member Seat

Date: Oct 08, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

You may recall SDCERS held elections earlier this year to fill the two active General Member seats on our Board of Administration, and the winners of that election were Bret A. Bartolotta and Sarah Mayen. Unfortunately for SDCERS, Sarah Mayen recently left active City service, which means she can no longer serve on SDCERS’ Board as a representative for active General Members. Therefore, SDCERS is holding another election to fill her vacated seat on the Board. The winner of this election will serve the remainder of her four-year term, ending March 31, 2025.   The nominations process for this election has begun. All active City General Members are eligible to run for this seat and have been mailed a letter, which contains a unique validation number and instructions explaining how to self-nominate and/or sign a nominee’s petition. Please retain this letter, as you will need your unique validation number in order to submit a nomination or sign an existing nominee's petition.  If you are an active City General Member interested in serving on SDCERS Board, please be sure to self-nominate by October 29, 2021; all other active City General Members, please be sure to sign the nomination petition(s) of any candidate(s) you support!   If you are an active City General Member and have not received your nominations letter by October 14, 2021; if you lost your letter; or if you have any questions about the nomination process, please email SDCERShelp@electionservicescorp.com or call 1-866-720-4357, Monday – Friday, 6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. PST. All nominations and signatures must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on October 29, 2021. At that time, if there is only one nominee with at least 10 petition signatures (the minimum requirement to move forward), an election will not be necessary. If there are competing nominations, then we will proceed with the election and all active General Members will receive a letter with further instructions.  More...

SDCERS Receives Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for 13th Consecutive Year

The Government Financial Officers Association (“GFOA”) has awarded SDCERS the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for SDCERS’ 2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (“CAFR”) and Popular Annual Financial Report (“PAFR”). This is the 13th year in a row SDCERS has received this recognition! The GFOA is a non-profit professional association serving approximately 15,000 government finance professionals. SDCERS’ CAFR and PAFR were judged by an impartial panel and deemed to have met the high standards of the certificate program, including demonstrating an effective means to disclose and clearly communicate SDCERS’ financial story and to motivate Members and the public to read the CAFR and PAFR.  This award is the highest form of recognition in the area of government accounting and financial reporting. It represents a significant accomplishment by a governmental agency and its management. More...

SDCERS' Final Investment Return for FY 2021

Date: Sep 10, 2021 Categories: Investments, News Articles, Press Release

At today's Board meeting, SDCERS’ Investments Team reported a final return of 24.9% (net of fees) for Fiscal Year 2021. As of June 30, 2021, the trust fund’s assets totaled just over $10 billion – the highest level SDCERS has seen in its history! The end of fiscal year total reflects a net increase of about $2.0 billion since June 30, 2020. SDCERS’ average rate of return over the past 20 years is 7.8%, and since its inception is 9.1%.   There are a few ways to measure an investment portfolio’s performance. One way we measure our performance is by comparing our actual rate of return to the actuarial rate of return, which is the expected earnings rate determined by SDCERS’ actuary and used to calculate things like contribution rates. We are happy to report that our 24.9% return is vastly greater than our actuarial rate of return of 6.5%, which indicates SDCERS is maintaining its long-term investment strategy to ensure the continued payment of promised pension benefits to its members.   Another way to measure performance is by comparing our returns to a policy benchmark, which is how the total fund would perform if it was completely invested in index funds for each of the assets classes it was invested in. This fiscal year SDCERS outperformed its benchmark which had a 24.4%  return.   Performance can also be measured in comparison to other public pension plans, although it is important to remember that plans have very different sizes, circumstances, and funding statuses which impacts their asset allocations and in turn their return targets. Over longer time periods, SDCERS stacks up very well with its peers – over the past 20 years, SDCERS experienced higher returns than 93% of the 192 other plans in our peer group.   More...

September 2021 Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Sep 03, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled September Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  September 9th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/81093536376  September 9th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/84473252803   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on September 9th at 9:15 a.m. PST, and the Board meeting on September 10th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting.   More...

City's Pension Plan Reopened as of July 10, 2021

Date: Aug 20, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Press Release, Proposition B

The City of San Diego officially reopened its pension plan to all non-police employees hired by the City on or after July 10, 2021 - almost exactly nine years from Proposition B’s effective date. Such employees will fall into the most recent plan tier according to their member classification – General, Safety Fire, or Safety Lifeguard. Please review your pension plan summary according to hire date here. Police Safety members continue to be enrolled in a defined contribution plan while in the Police Academy and become SDCERS members once they are sworn.   However, we still do not know exactly how the trial court’s ruling will be implemented with respect to those non-sworn police officers hired by the City between July 20, 2012 and July 9, 2021, who have been participating in a 401(k)-style plan rather than the pension system. The City and relevant labor unions are in continuing negotiations. Please remember that SDCERS administers the City’s pension system pursuant to the relevant provisions of the City Charter and San Diego Municipal Code – it does not play a part in negotiating the pension benefits it is charged with administering. Please direct any questions regarding Prop B to your respective labor union representative or to the City’s Human Resources Department. More...

Summer 2021 SCOOP Newsletter & FY 2021 Annual Member Statements

Date: Aug 18, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

This year’s Summer SCOOP Newsletter has arrived and should hit mailboxes within the next week or so! For members who have not yet retired or entered DROP (including inactive and deferred vested members), a copy of the newsletter will be included in the envelope with your FY2021 Annual Member Statement. You can also view an electronic version of current and past issues on our website, here. The purpose of our newsletter is to keep you informed about what is currently happening here at SDCERS. We think this is important now more than ever, since we have not been able to see or talk to our members face to face in a very long time. If you’d like to receive an electronic copy of future SCOOP issues in advance of the mailed copy, you can sign up here.   Along with the Summer Newsletter, SDCERS members who have not retired or entered DROP should be receiving their Annual Member Statement in the mail over the next several days. This statement contains detailed account information for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2021, which means the information is current as of July 1, 2021. The purpose of this Annual Member Statement is (1) to ensure that your beneficiary designations are correct, and (2) to keep you up-to-date regarding the details of your SDCERS retirement account.   A video detailing the contents of your statement is available here.  Please review the information on your statement carefully. If you have questions about the Personal Information listed, please contact your Payroll Specialist or update your information in SAP (or contact your Human Resources office if you are a Port or Airport member).  Contact SDCERS if you have questions or need to update the Member and Contribution Information or Beneficiary Information, or if you believe there is an error in your statement.   If you have questions about your Annual Member Statement, please contact your Payroll Specialist or call the SDCERS Call Center at 619-525-3600, open Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST). And remember, your most up-to-date account information is always available on the SDCERS Member Portal.   More...

SDCERS' Board Welcomes Two New Audit Committee Members

Date: Aug 05, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

At its March 2021 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration appointed two new Independent Non-Board Members to its Audit Committee: Mia Harenski and Gary McCormick. (Click here for more background information about these appointments and SDCERS’ Audit Committee Members.)   Mia Harenski is a partner at Considine & Considine, CPA. She is originally from the Central Valley and, after attending college in San Diego, she decided to call it her permanent home. Mia serves on several community boards and committees, as well as being an active volunteer for her sons’ schools and various sports-related activities.   Gary McCormick has more than 30 years of public accounting experience and currently works as an audit partner at BDO, an accounting firm that provides tax and financial advisory services to clients all around the world. Gary previously served as the partner in charge of the audits of the City of San Diego, the County of San Diego, and the San Diego Port District – so he already has experience and insight related to two of SDCERS’ plan sponsors!   On behalf of SDCERS’ Board and staff, we are thrilled to welcome Mia and Gary to our Audit Committee. Their background and expertise in auditing and accounting will only increase SDCERS’ accountability and professionalism, two of our Board’s core values. More...

New Member Contribution Rates for FY2022

Date: Jul 01, 2021 Categories: Contribution Rates, News Articles, Press Release

IMPORTANT: These changes only apply to (1) City of San Diego members and (2) Port and Airport members who were hired on or after January 1, 2013.   Member contributions are the mandatory pre-tax deductions on a member’s biweekly paycheck that are deposited into the SDCERS Trust Fund, where they earn interest and ultimately fund each member’s individual pension benefit. Contributions are calculated as a percentage of the member’s pensionable salary on each paycheck. The percentage is determined according to the member’s plan tier and age of entry into SDCERS. Contribution rates are adjusted by SDCERS’ Board, as recommended by SDCERS’ actuary, based on requirements in the City of San Diego Charter and the Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013.    At its March 12, 2021 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved new member contribution rates, which will go into effect on July 1, 2021 for all City of San Diego members and all Port and Airport members hired on or after January 1, 2013. If you fall into one of these membership categories, you can view your new contribution rates by going to “Retirement Plan Summaries” and clicking on your employer and date range corresponding to your initial hire date. Most members will experience slightly increased contribution rates – this is due to changes in certain actuarial assumptions.   According to the most recent annual valuation, mortality assumptions are changing such that people are generally living to an older age. On top of that, future improvements to those mortality assumptions (generational mortality improvements) were considered. For example, a 65-year-old today will have a different mortality estimate than that of a 65-year-old 20 years from now. Both of these new assumptions increase the cost to the system, since the new assumptions indicate that SDCERS will be paying out individual pension benefits over a longer timeframe than original estimates suggested. Therefore, members and their plan sponsors must contribute more while they are working in order to keep the system properly funded, given the added cost due to these new assumptions. The new contribution rates will be reflected in City of San Diego members’ paychecks for pay period ending July 9, 2021, and Port and Airport members’ paychecks for pay period ending July 1, 2021.   More...

Fiscal Year 2022 City Retiree Health Open Enrollment

Date: May 24, 2021 Categories: Events, Health, News Articles, Press Release, Retirement Resources

Health open enrollment for City of San Diego retirees will run from June 1st through June 30th. As of May 24th, the fiscal year 2022 City retiree health booklets were mailed out to all eligible City retirees and beneficiaries. An electronic version of the booklet is available here, and the health plan comparison chart here. You can also download and complete enrollment forms by visiting the City Retiree Health page. After you’ve completed an enrollment (or disenrollment) form, you must send it to SDCERS by June 30th – we prefer you scan your forms and email them as a PDF attachment to health@sdcers.org, but you may also fax them to (858) 581-5314 or mail them to our offices at:   SDCERS – Health Division 401 West A Street, Suite 400 San Diego, CA 92101   As always, if you do not wish to make any changes to your current healthcare coverage, you do not need to take any action during open enrollment and your coverage will remain the same. There are no new plans this year and no significant changes to existing plans in terms of coverage.   Due to the continuing ban on public gatherings, this year’s open enrollment will similar to last year’s: SDCERS will not be holding in-person open enrollment events, such as the annual Open Enrollment Kickoff or Help Day. Instead, SDCERS participated in a virtual health fair hosted by SDPEBA (San Diego Public Employee Benefit Association), which was held on June 2nd.   Additionally, plan providers once again recorded the presentations they would have given at SDCERS’ live open enrollment events. You can access their videos via this page on our website.   If you are comparing different plans and trying to decide which is best for you, don’t forget about CareCounsel! CareCounsel Member Care Specialists are available for your healthcare inquiries and concerns. You can call them at (888) 227-3334 or e-mail staff@carecounsel.com Monday – Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. CareCounsel also provides helpful videos on their website that may answer your questions about Medicare, here: https://carecounsel.com/medicare.html.   SDCERS’ Call Center is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., at (619) 525-3600 and (800) 774-4977. Please be patient with our hard-working staff; we are working with limited resources and call wait times may be longer than usual due to an expected increase in health-related calls. More...

Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) for Fiscal Year 2022

Date: May 14, 2021 Categories: Board, COLA, News Articles, Press Release

At its May 14, 2021 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved the Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) that will be applied to eligible SDCERS retirees’ (including active DROP participants) monthly pension benefit amount from July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022. You will receive a COLA for Fiscal Year 2022 if your retirement or DROP entry date is on or before June 30, 2021.   Per San Diego Municipal Code section 24.1505 and section 1301 of the Port and Airport Plans, the COLA is calculated every year based on the change in the cost of living between the two previous Decembers, as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index (“CPI”), United States – All items. However, the maximum allowable increase in any given year is 2.0%.   In years where the COLA is greater than the maximum 2.0% (such as last year), the amount over 2% is added to what is called a “COLA bank.” A retiree’s COLA bank accumulates based on their fiscal year of retirement (or DROP entry), and each annual retiree group has its own COLA bank. In years that the CPI’s published COLA is less than 2%, each retiree group’s COLA bank may be able to increase the actual COLA received by the retiree up to a maximum of 2%, if that retiree group’s COLA bank has accrued enough funds from years where the published COLA was greater than 2%.   According to the CPI, the change in cost of living between December 31, 2019 and December 31, 2020 was 1.362%. Due to the fact that this year’s COLA is less than 2%, different COLAs were approved for different retiree groups, depending on the member’s retirement (or DROP entry) date and COLA bank. (Please open the full article to review the different COLAs.)   If you are eligible to receive a Fiscal Year 2022 COLA, the applicable increase will be reflected in your July 2021 pension payment.   More...

May Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: May 07, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled May Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  May 13th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link:https://zoom.us/j/96187724114  May 13th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link:https://zoom.us/j/98739346808   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on May 13th at 9:15 a.m., and the Board meeting on May 14th at 8:30 a.m. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting.   More...

City's Proposition B Update

Date: Apr 14, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Pension, Press Release, Proposition B

As you may know, Proposition B (“Prop B”) was the San Diego ballot initiative that went into effect July 20, 2012 and amended the City Charter to close the City’s pension system to all new hires except for sworn City police officers. This ballot measure has been in litigation since its inception. In January 2021, a San Diego state trial court issued a verbal ruling from the bench, declaring Prop B to be invalid. This verbal ruling was followed by a written statement of decision, and proponents of Prop B had until April 9, 2021 to appeal the trial court’s ruling.   No appeal was filed by the deadline, which means the trial court’s invalidation of Prop B is final. However, we still do not know exactly how the trial court’s ruling will be implemented. So, what happens next?The City and labor unions will enter into negotiations to decide how the trial court’s decision will be implemented.The City will have to take legislative action (i.e., pass a City Ordinance) to remove Prop B from the City Charter and, if applicable, the San Diego Municipal Code.Once the above actions are completed, we will have more information about enrolling City Members hired since July 20, 2012 into an SDCERS pension plan and their options moving forward. Until then, Proposition B is still in effect – meaning all new City hires (except sworn police officers) since July 20, 2012 continue to contribute to the City’s SPSP-H plan in lieu of participating in an SDCERS defined benefit pension plan.If the invalidation of Prop B affects you, SDCERS anticipates that we will contact you on an individual basis once the above actions have been completed.   NOTE: SDCERS administers the City’s pension system pursuant to the relevant provisions of the City Charter and San Diego Municipal Code – it does not play a part in negotiating the pension benefits it is charged with administering. Please direct any questions regarding Prop B to your respective labor union representative or to the City’s Human Resources Department. More...

It's SDCERS' 90th Birthday!

Date: Apr 07, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

On April 7, 1931, Article VIII, Section 140 was added to San Diego’s City Charter, which created the San Diego City Employees’ Retirement System (“SDCERS”). Today, 90 years later, SDCERS administers the pension benefits for three plan sponsors – the City of San Diego, the San Diego Port District, and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. We have nearly 7,000 active members comprising 21 different pension plan tiers and over 8,500 retired members currently receiving monthly pension benefits.   SDCERS is the only pension system in California to have a Board of Administration comprised of a majority of non-members – meaning our Board is set up to be as objective as possible in the pursuit of fair and prudent governance.   All of SDCERS’ plan sponsors make their annual payment in full every July, and our Board has a solid plan to ensure our pension system is on a steady path to becoming fully funded. We offer tons of educational materials on our website – see our “Resources” section – and every member is able to create their personal Member Portal account, where they can securely access specific information regarding their pension benefits, add and remove beneficiaries, apply for retirement, create benefit estimates, and more.   Please join us in wishing SDCERS a happy 90th birthday as we look back on all of our successes and growth over the years!   More...

Results of Board Member Elections

Date: Mar 12, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

As of 5:00 p.m. (PST) on February 11th, voting concluded in the elections for SDCERS' two active General Board Member seats and one active Fire Safety Board Member seat. All active General Members (City, Port, and Airport) were eligible to vote in the General Board Member elections, while active City Fire and Lifeguard Members were eligible to vote for one of the Fire Safety Board Member candidates. Thank you to all who participated in these elections!   The candidates who received the majority of votes for the General Board Member seats are Bret A. Bartolotta and Sarah Mayen.   The candidate who received the majority of votes for the Fire Safety Board Member seat is Paul Lotze.   The current Board of Administration certified the election results today, at its March 12, 2021 meeting. Congratulations to our newly elected Board Members and thank you in advance for your service on SDCERS’ Board of Administration! The new Board Members will attend their first SDCERS Board meeting on May 14, 2021.   More...

March Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Mar 05, 2021 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled March Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  March 11th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/91595143776  March 11th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link:https://zoom.us/j/94550286076   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on March 11th at 9:15 a.m., and the Board meeting on March 12th at 8:30 a.m. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting.   More...

Voting is Now CLOSED for Board Member Elections

Date: Feb 12, 2021 Categories: Board, Events, News Articles, Press Release

Elections have ended for SDCERS' two active General Board Member seats and one active Fire Safety Board Member seat.  The candidates for the two General Board Member seats are: 1) Bret A. Bartolotta 2) Thomas Battaglia 3) Sarah Mayen 4) Tammy L. Williams The candidates for the Fire Safety Board Member seat are: 1) Paul Lotze 2) Tim Robles The election results will be publicly announced and certifed by SDCERS' Board of Administration during its meeting on March 12, 2021. More...

2020 1099-R Forms

Date: Feb 03, 2021 Categories: 1099R, Member Portal

IRS Form 1099-R’s were mailed on January 15th. All SDCERS retirees and beneficiaries who received a payment from SDCERS in 2020 should have received their 2020 1099-R forms via U.S. mail by now. You can also access your tax forms online by logging into your Member Portal account, clicking on “Tax Reporting” on the left, and selecting “2020 1099R,”  which will allow you to download an electronic copy. You can also update your tax withholding preferences on your Member Portal by clicking on “Tax Withholding.” This guide explains how to update your tax withholding preferences.   For a detailed explanation of the pertinent information in your 1099-R, as well as answers to frequently asked questions regarding this tax form, please review our 1099-R Fact Sheet. If you have additional questions, please contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600 or submit your questions electronically via our Contact Us web form.   More...

Voting is Now Open for Board Member Elections

Date: Jan 28, 2021 Categories: Board, Events, News Articles, Press Release

Elections have begun for SDCERS' two active General Board Member seats and one active Fire Safety Board Member seat. All active General Members (City, Port, and Airport) are eligible to vote for up to two candidates who will represent them on SDCERS' Board for the next four years, starting in May 2021. All active City Fire and Lifeguard Members are eligible to vote for one of the Fire Safety Board Member candidates.   If you are in any of the above-mentioned membership classifications, a letter was mailed to you on January 25th. Each letter explains the voting process, lists information about the candidates, and contains a unique validation number. Please retain this letter, as you will need your unique validation number in order to cast your vote. You should expect to receive this letter within the next few days – if you have not received a letter by February 2nd, or if you received the letter but no longer have access to it, please contact the elections help line at 1-866-720-4357, Monday – Friday, between 6:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. PST. You can also email SDCERShelp@electionservicescorp.com. The candidates for the two General Board Member seats are: 1) Bret A. Bartolotta 2) Thomas Battaglia 3) Sarah Mayen 4) Tammy L. Williams The candidates for the Fire Safety Board Member seat are: 1) Paul Lotze 2) Tim Robles Votes may be cast by phone or online – specific information about the voting process is contained in your letter. All votes must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on February 11, 2021. More...

2020 1099-R Forms

Date: Jan 15, 2021 Categories: 1099R, Member Portal

IRS Form 1099-R’s were mailed on January 15th. This means all SDCERS retirees and beneficiaries who received a payment from SDCERS in 2020 should be receiving their 2020 1099-R forms via U.S. mail over the next couple of weeks. To access your 1099-R form sooner, please log in to your Member Portal account, click on “Tax Reporting” on the left, and select “2020 1099R” to download an electronic copy. You can also update your tax withholding preferences on your Member Portal by clicking on “Tax Withholding.” This guide explains how to update your tax withholding preferences.   For a detailed explanation of the pertinent information in your 1099-R, as well as answers to frequently asked questions regarding this tax form, please review our 1099-R Fact Sheet. If you have additional questions, please contact the Call Center at (619) 525-3600 or submit your questions electronically via our Contact Us web form.   More...

SDCERS' IT Department Receives 2020 MISAC Quality IT Practices Award

Date: Jan 08, 2021 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS is proud to announce it has received the Municipal Information System Association of California (MISAC) Quality Information Technology Practices Award for the third year in a row. MISAC is a collaborative organization of California local government IT professionals with the goal of promoting leadership, information sharing, and access to resources to enhance local government services and effectiveness. Membership includes cities, towns, public safety, special districts, and other local governmental agencies/districts.  MISAC's Quality IT Practices program is meant to document and acknowledgement MISAC agencies that are following IT best practices. Applicants are required to submit a detailed questionnaire and supporting material. Agency’s strengths are benchmarked to System Administration, Audit, Network, and Security (SANS) Institute standards. The SANS Institute is a cooperative research and education organization of security practitioners from varied worldwide organizations, corporations, and universities working together to help the global information security community.   Receiving MISAC Quality IT Practices Award is an honor and tribute to the dedication and performance of SDCERS’ IT staff and contractors. More...

Proposition B Declared Invalid By San Diego Trial Court

Date: Jan 06, 2021 Categories: Litigation, News Articles, Pension, Proposition B

Proposition B was the San Diego ballot initiative that went into effect July 20, 2012 and amended the City Charter to close the City’s pension system to all new hires except for City police officers. This ballot measure has been in litigation since its inception. Please visit our FAQ’s for more information about the history of Proposition B.   Recently, opponents of Proposition B gained momentum in their quest to overturn the ballot measure: On January 5, 2021, a San Diego state trial court heard oral arguments in this matter and issued a verbal ruling from the bench, declaring Proposition B to be invalid. Currently, the court is drafting a written statement of its decision, which will direct the City Council to erase Proposition B's language from the City Charter. We do not know exactly how this ruling will be implemented – whether it will retroactively provide pension benefits to all City employees who were affected by Proposition B, if these employees will be compensated some other way and begin earning pension benefits prospectively, or if some other resolution will be negotiated. However, it is worth noting that if the trial court's decision is appealed within 60 days of the court’s written statement of decision, any enforcement of the decision may be stalled until the appeal is resolved.  Note: SDCERS is not a party to this litigation. SDCERS administers the City’s pension system pursuant to the relevant provisions of the City Charter and San Diego Municipal Code – it does not play a part in negotiating the pension benefits it is charged with administering. More...

January Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Dec 31, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled January Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  January 7th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/97664013115  January 7th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/92037693542   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on January 7th at 9:15 a.m., and the Board meeting on January 8th at 8:30 a.m. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting. More...

Upcoming Board Member Elections (Active City General and Fire Safety)

Date: Dec 22, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS' two active General Board Members (Thomas Battaglia and Jeffrey Wallace) and active Fire Safety Board Member (Michael McBride) will complete their four-year term on SDCERS' Board of Administration on March 31, 2021. Therefore, SDCERS will be holding elections to fill these soon-to-be vacated seats. All active City General and Fire Safety Members are eligible to nominate a candidate for their respective representative on SDCERS' Board. If you are in one of these membership classifications, you should have received a letter containing a unique validation number and explaining the nominations process. Please retain this letter, as you will need your unique validation number in order to submit a nomination or sign an existing nominee's petition.  In order for a nominee to be eligible for the open position, they must receive at least 10 signatures on their nomination petition. You can submit a self-nomination or sign a petition online through the following website: https://vote.escvote.com/SDCERS/ If you lost your letter or have any questions about the nomination process, please email SDCERShelp@electionservicescorp.com or call 1-866-720-4357, Monday – Friday, 6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. PST.  All nominations must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. PST on January 6, 2021. At that time, if there is only one nominee for each open seat, an election will not be necessary. If there are competing nominations, then we will proceed with elections and you will receive another letter with further instructions if you are eligible to vote in the election.    More...

SDCERS Board Approves Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett Settlement Increase for 2020

At its November 13, 2020 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved payment of the Annual Supplemental Benefit and the Corbett Settlement Increase (“Corbett benefit”) for eligible retirees and continuance beneficiaries. The Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid in years when the fund’s investment earnings are sufficient to qualify, according to a set formula defined in the plan documents, and the Corbett benefit is paid in years that the Annual Supplemental Benefit is paid. If you are eligible for one or both of these benefits, payment will be included in your November 2020 monthly pension benefit.   The eligibility requirements for the Annual Supplemental Benefit and Corbett benefit are described in our FAQs under “Annual Supplemental Benefit, Corbett, COLA, COL Annuity.” Here, you will also find a description of how these benefits are calculated.   In addition to the requirements outlined in the FAQ’s, in order to be eligible for the Annual Supplemental Benefit, a retiree or continuance beneficiary must have been (1) alive, and (2) eligible to receive a monthly pension benefit on October 1, 2020. If an eligible retiree died on or after October 1, 2020, the retiree’s continuance beneficiary is not eligible for their own Annual Supplemental Benefit. In this case, the retiree’s Annual Supplemental Benefit payment will be included in the $2,000 Retiree Death Benefit and Other Payable Monies, which is paid to the beneficiary(ies) named to receive that death benefit. More...

2021 Deferred Retirement Option Plan ("DROP") Interest Rates

Date: Nov 13, 2020 Categories: Board, DROP, News Articles, Press Release

At today’s meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration voted to approve new DROP account and DROP annuity interest rates, which will be effective January 1, 2021. The DROP account rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS while a Member is in DROP and the DROP annuity rate is the interest rate used by SDCERS to annuitize the DROP monies of a Member who has exited DROP and retired. These rates are calculated annually using publicly available indexes as of September 30 of each year.   Effective January 1, 2021, the DROP account interest rate will be 1%, compared to the current rate of 2.5%. This interest rate will be compounded quarterly and applied to all active DROP participants’ accounts as long as the participant is actively employed by the City of San Diego, San Diego Unified Port District, or the San Diego Regional Airport Authority on the last day of each quarter. This rate is subject to change annually, which means a DROP participant’s account may receive a different interest rate every year during their participation period, depending on the Board’s actions.   Also beginning January 1, 2021, the DROP annuity interest rate will be 2.1%, compared to the current rate of 3.1%. This interest rate will be factored into the calculation of a DROP retiree’s monthly DROP annuity, if they DROP retire between January 1 and December 31, 2021 and choose to annuitize their DROP account. Unlike the DROP account interest rate, the DROP annuity rate will not change for an individual member – the rate that is in effect when a member DROP retires is the rate that will be applied to their annuity, regardless of whether or not the DROP annuity rate changes in future years. If you are nearing the end of your five-year DROP participation period, your decision to DROP retire before or after the New Year may be affected by the Board’s decision regarding the DROP annuity interest rate. However, if you do not plan to annuitize your DROP account upon exiting DROP, then the DROP annuity rate changes will not affect you. Click here to review your options regarding how you may choose to receive your DROP account.  Read the full article for an example of how the changing DROP annuity interest rate could affect the calculation of a hypothetical DROP annuity.   If you are currently in DROP and considering retiring before Dec. 31, you must begin the process immediately as counseling appointments will fill up fast. To begin the process, you must first go to your Member Portal account and click on “DROP Retirement Application” from the left menu, under Tools. Review this information, make your selections, and SUBMIT THE APPLICATION ONLINE. Once received, you will be contacted by an SDCERS staff member to schedule your personal phone counseling appointment. At your appointment, you can ask questions and make any changes you’d like to your application. Your electronic application is not final and you have not retired until you’ve submitted your signed application signature page, which will be emailed to you by your retirement counselor during your appointment. More...

November Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Nov 06, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled November Board and Committee meetings. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the Board meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Disability, Investment, and/or Audit Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  November 12th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/96709801075  November 12th, 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/96759190239  November 18th, 9:00 a.m. PST Audit Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/96592132396   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on November 12th at 9:15 a.m., and the Board meeting on November 13th at 8:30 a.m. To access the live stream for either meeting, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting. More...

SDCERS' 2020 (Virtual) Annual Membership Meeting

Date: Oct 26, 2020 Categories: Events, Pension, Press Release

In keeping with this year's trend, SDCERS’ 2020 Annual Membership Meeting took place virtually as a recorded Zoom meeting. It was not a live event; rather, you can watch the presentations at your leisure via our YouTube channel by clicking here. The theme of the meeting was "Every Challenge Encountered is an Opportunity for Growth," and the presenters did a great job of explaining what major challenges SDCERS has faced, both recently and in the past, and how SDCERS approached and overcame these obstacles. Here is a sneak preview of this year's presentations:Liza Crisafi, Chief Investment Officer, provided a summary of SDCERS' investment performance in fiscal year 2020.Marcelle Voorhies Rossman, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, explained how SDCERS handled the COVID-19 pandemic.Gregg Rademacher, Chief Executive Officer, incorporated some of his favorite sayings while he talked about SDCERS' trials and tribulations, both new and old, and reassured SDCERS’ membership that its pension system will meet any challenge in order to pay benefits accurately and timely, and ensure the trust fund’s safety, integrity, and growth.Cynthia Queen, Member Services Director, gave a brief overview of the Member Portal for both active and retired members, and encouraged all members to register for their own Member Portal account if they haven’t already.We encourage you to take the time to watch the meeting and let us know what you think via our Contact Us page. This is an annual event that is usually held in person, giving us an opportunity to engage with our membership. Unfortunately, we couldn’t meet with you all in person this year, but we hope to see you all at next year's meeting!   More...

SDCERS Receives the 2020 Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration

Date: Oct 22, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Pension, Press Release

For the third year in a row, SDCERS has been awarded the Public Pension Standards Award for Funding and Administration. The Public Pension Coordinating Council grants this award, which recognizes SDCERS for meeting professional standards for plan funding and administration as set forth in the Public Pension Standards.​Recognition Award for Administration SDCERS received the Recognition Award for Administration due to its adherence to the five essential administrative categories:Comprehensive Benefit ProgramActuarialAuditInvestmentsCommunications Recognition Award for Funding SDCERS received the Recognition Award for Funding because its three plan sponsors (City of San Diego, Port of San Diego, and San Diego County Regional Airport Authority) consistently pay their Annual Required Contributions as determined by the SDCERS Board.  The Public Pension Coordinating Council (PPCC) is a coalition of three national associations that represent public retirement systems and administrators: National Association of State Retirement Administrators (NASRA), the National Council on Teacher Retirement (NCTR) and the National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS). Together, these associations represent more than 500 of the largest pension plans in the United States serving most of the nation’s 16 million employees of state and local government. More...

SDCERS RECEIVES CERTIFICATE OF ACHIEVEMENT FOR EXCELLENCE IN FINANCIAL REPORTING FOR 12TH CONSECUTIVE YEAR

The Government Financial Officers Association (“GFOA”) has awarded SDCERS the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for SDCERS’ 2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (“CAFR”) and Popular Annual Financial Report (“PAFR”). This is the 12th year in a row SDCERS has received this recognition! The GFOA is a non-profit professional association serving approximately 15,000 government finance professionals. SDCERS’ CAFR and PAFR were judged by an impartial panel and deemed to have met the high standards of the certificate program, including demonstrating an effective means to disclose and clearly communicate SDCERS’ financial story and to motivate Members and the public to read the CAFR and PAFR.  This award is the highest form of recognition in the area of government accounting and financial reporting. It represents a significant accomplishment by a governmental agency and its management.   SDCERS’ award-winning CAFRs and PAFRs are available online and can be viewed here.   More...

September Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Sep 04, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled September Board and Committee meetings, except for the Disability Committee meeting, which has been cancelled. All meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Audit and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  September 9th, 9:00 a.m. PST Audit Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/92308362729  September 10th 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/95359576685   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on September 10th and the Board meeting on September 11th. To access the live stream, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting.   More...

FY 2020 Annual Member Statements

Date: Aug 11, 2020 Categories: News Articles

Non-retired SDCERS Members will be receiving their Annual Member Statement in the mail over the next several days. This statement contains detailed account information for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2020, which means the information is current as of July 1, 2020. The purpose of this Annual Statement of Benefits is (1) to ensure that your beneficiary designations are updated, and (2) to keep you informed of the details of your SDCERS retirement account.Please review the information on your statement carefully and contact SDCERS if you need to update your information or if you believe there is an error in your statement. A video detailing the contents of your statement is available here. If you have questions about your Annual Statement of Benefits, please contact your Payroll Specialist or call the SDCERS Call Center at 619-525-3600, open Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. (PST). And remember, your most up-to-date account information is always available on the SDCERS Member Portal.   More...

Call Center is Open, But Office Remains Closed

Date: Jul 20, 2020 Categories: News Articles, Press Release, Retirement Resources

SDCERS staff is here to assist you – we just can’t see you in person. The Call Center's "new" hours are from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. You can also submit non-urgent questions or concerns via our Contact Us page, and we will respond within one business day.   We appreciate your patience. The majority of SDCERS staff are still required to telecommute and our offices remain closed to members and the public.   Retirement counseling appointments are being held via phone and document signing takes place via email exchange. If you already have a retirement counseling appointment scheduled, you will be contacted in advance with details. If you have recently submitted your online application, you will be contacted soon to schedule your appointment.   If you are thinking about retiring soon, please review the fact sheets, FAQs, and videos on our website, which will help answer many of your questions in advance. Keep an eye out for retirement educational webinars, which are announced periodically via your work email. You can also estimate your future retirement benefit by using the Benefit Calculator on the Member Portal. If you have not already registered on our secure Member Portal, click on “Register” on the Member Portal page and follow the registration instructions.   Once you have reviewed all of the pertinent information, if you want to schedule a retirement counseling appointment, you must submit an online retirement application through your Member Portal account by clicking “Online Applications” on the left panel. Keep in mind this electronic application is not final – your submission simply prompts us to contact you to schedule a counseling appointment.  CITY RETIREE HEALTH REIMBURSEMENTS: City Retiree Health Reimbursement requests are being processed as usual. For fastest processing, submit your documents via email (attached as a PDF) to health@sdcers.org. Do NOT use health@sandiego.gov, as this email no longer forwards to health@sdcers.org. Please ensure you have submitted complete documents – we continue to receive incomplete submissions, which cannot be processed and result in delayed reimbursements.  Note: If you are using an Apple product to send the email, in Mail, please select "Format" and click on "Make Plain Text" - we've received reports of emails not getting through our firewalls if this extra step isn't taken when using an Apple product. Alternatively, you may fax your documents to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our office at 401 West A Street, Ste. 400, San Diego, CA 92101.   More...

Call Center is Open, But Office Remains Closed

Date: Jul 13, 2020 Categories: News Articles, Press Release, Retirement Resources

SDCERS staff is here to assist you – we just can’t see you in person. Our Call Center hours will be adjusted this week for training, as we seek the best ways to serve our members during this challenging time.  Tuesday, July 14             10 a.m. to noon, and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.Wednesday, July 15        10 a.m. to noon, and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.   Beginning Thursday, July 16th, the Call Center will be open on the regular schedule, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. You can also submit non-urgent questions or concerns via our Contact Us page, and we will respond within one business day.   We appreciate your patience. The majority of SDCERS staff are still required to telecommute and our offices remain closed to members and the public.   Retirement counseling appointments are being held via phone and document signing takes place via email exchange. If you already have a retirement counseling appointment scheduled, you will be contacted in advance with details. If you have recently submitted your online application, you will be contacted soon to schedule your appointment.   If you are thinking about retiring soon, please review the fact sheets, FAQs, and videos on our website, which will help answer many of your questions in advance. Keep an eye out for retirement educational webinars, which are announced periodically via your work email. You can also estimate your future retirement benefit by using the Benefit Calculator on the Member Portal. If you have not already registered on our secure Member Portal, click on “Register” on the Member Portal page and follow the registration instructions.   Once you have reviewed all of the pertinent information, if you want to schedule a retirement counseling appointment, you must submit an online retirement application through your Member Portal account by clicking “Online Applications” on the left panel. Keep in mind this electronic application is not final – your submission simply prompts us to contact you to schedule a counseling appointment.  CITY RETIREE HEALTH REIMBURSEMENTS: City Retiree Health Reimbursement requests are being processed as usual. For fastest processing, submit your documents via email (attached as a PDF) to health@sdcers.org. Do NOT use health@sandiego.gov, as this email no longer forwards to health@sdcers.org. Please ensure you have submitted complete documents – we continue to receive incomplete submissions, which cannot be processed and result in delayed reimbursements.  Note: If you are using an Apple product to send the email, in Mail, please select "Format" and click on "Make Plain Text" - we've received reports of emails not getting through our firewalls if this extra step isn't taken when using an Apple product. Alternatively, you may fax your documents to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our office at 401 West A Street, Ste. 400, San Diego, CA 92101. More...

Retiree & Active DROP Participants - Death Benefits and Importance of Keeping Beneficiary Designations Updated

Date: Jul 10, 2020 Categories: Member Portal, News Articles, Pension

When was the last time you thought about your SDCERS beneficiary designations? Over a year ago? Five years? The day you retired or entered DROP? Maybe never? Beneficiary designations may seem like a chore you can put off or do once and forget about, but the truth is you should review your beneficiary designations at least once a year to make sure they reflect your current circumstances. For example, beneficiary designations probably aren’t the first thing on your mind when you get married or divorced, have a child, or lose a loved one, but these are all defining life events that may affect who you want to receive your pension benefits when you die. This article summarizes the death benefits provided to DROP participants and SDCERS retirees, but please review the Death Benefits Fact Sheet and Retirement Benefit Options Fact Sheet for more in-depth information. Review the full article to learn about possible death benefits such as:Continuance Benefit$2,000 Retiree Death Benefit & Other Unpaid MoniesDROP Death BenefitUpdating your beneficiary designations is quick, easy, and you can do it from home by logging in to your SDCERS Member Portal account and clicking “Beneficiary Update” from the left menu. (If you don’t already have a Member Portal account, you can register here.)   You will be able to name beneficiaries to receive different types of death benefits depending on if you are active, in DROP, or retired. You can designate both a Primary and an Alternate beneficiary for your $2,000 Retiree Death Benefit and DROP Death Benefit. When you die, your Primary is first in line to collect the death benefit, while your Alternate receives the benefit only if the Primary is already deceased. For some death benefits, you can name multiple beneficiaries and designate a specific percentage of the benefit to each person. If you choose to do this, make sure your percentages add up to 100%. Lastly, you may also designate a trust to receive any death benefit that is not a continuance or an annuity. More...

Upcoming Remote Board & Committee Meetings

Date: Jul 01, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS will be holding its regularly scheduled July Board and Committee meetings; however, all meetings will continue to be held remotely for the foreseeable future. This means the meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made the meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Audit, Disability, and/or Investment Committee meetings, please click the corresponding link below prior to the start time of the meeting. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  July 8th, 9:00 a.m. PST Audit Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/94776103948  July 9th, 9:00 a.m. PST Disability Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/97235033506  July 9th 12:30 p.m. PST Investment Committee meeting Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/91784976674   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will be live streaming the entirety of the Business & Governance Committee meeting on July 9th at 9:15 a.m. PST and the Board meeting on July 10th at 8:30 a.m. PST. To access the live stream, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the meeting you wish to attend. This will open a new tab with the agenda for that meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. Video recordings of the meetings will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for each meeting up to an hour before the meeting begins. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting. More...

SDCERS' Call Center is Now Open, But Office Remains Closed

Date: Jun 01, 2020 Categories: News Articles, Press Release

Our Call Center is now open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. However, the Call Center is not currently staffed at full capacity, which is why it is only operating during limited hours. Therefore, please be patient as call waiting times may be longer than usual. To help decrease call volume, please submit non-urgent questions or concerns via our Contact Us page, which we continue to monitor and generally respond to within one business day.   The majority of SDCERS staff are still required to telecommute, and our offices remain closed to members and the public. We will continue to conduct retirement counseling appointments via phone, which we have been doing since the statewide shelter-in-place order began in late March. The phone counseling sessions have been well-received, and document signing takes place via email exchange. If you already have a retirement counseling appointment scheduled, you will be contacted in advance with details. If you have recently submitted your online application, you will be contacted soon to schedule your appointment.   If you are thinking about retiring soon, please review the fact sheets, FAQs, and videos on our website, which will help answer many of your questions in advance. Keep an eye out for retirement educational webinars, which are announced periodically via your work email. You can also estimate your future retirement benefit by using the Benefit Calculator on the Member Portal. If you have not already registered on our secure Member Portal, click on “Register” on the Member Portal page and follow the registration instructions.   Once you have reviewed all of the pertinent information, if you want to schedule a retirement counseling appointment, you must submit an online retirement application through your Member Portal account by clicking “Online Applications” on the left panel. Keep in mind this electronic application is not final – your submission simply prompts us to contact you to schedule a counseling appointment.  CITY RETIREE HEALTH REIMBURSEMENTS: City Retiree Health Reimbursement requests are being processed as usual. For fastest processing, submit your documents via email (attached as a PDF) to health@sdcers.org. Do NOT use health@sandiego.gov, as this email no longer forwards to health@sdcers.org. Please ensure you have submitted complete documents – we continue to receive incomplete submissions, which cannot be processed and result in delayed reimbursements.  Note: if you are using an Apple product to send the email, in Mail, please select "Format" and click on "Make Plain Text" - we've received reports of emails not getting through our firewalls if this extra step isn't taken when using an Apple product. Alternatively, you may fax your documents to (858) 581-5314, or mail them to our office at 401 West A Street, Ste. 400, San Diego, CA 92101.   More...

City Retiree Health Open Enrollment ENDS TUESDAY, JUNE 30TH

Date: May 29, 2020 Categories: Events, Health, Open Enrollment

Health open enrollment for City of San Diego retirees began on June 1st and will end on June 30th. The fiscal year 2021 City retiree health booklets were mailed out to all eligible City retirees and  beneficiaries on May 29th and an electronic version of the booklet is available here. You can also download and complete enrollment forms by visiting the City Retiree Health page. After you’ve completed an enrollment (or disenrollment) form, you must send it to SDCERS by June 30th – we prefer you scan your forms and email to health@sdcers.org, but you may also fax them to (858) 581-5314 or mail them to our offices at:   SDCERS – Health Division 401 West A Street, Suite 400 San Diego, CA 92101   As always, if you do not wish to make any changes to your current healthcare coverage, you do not need to take any action during open enrollment and your coverage will remain the same. The only exception to this is for those of you currently covered by United Concordia for dental insurance – effective August 1st, you will automatically be enrolled in the new Delta Dental plan, which is replacing United Concordia. If you do not want to enroll in the Delta Dental plan, you must provide SDCERS with a disenrollment form.   There is only one new plan this year – SDPEBA (San Diego Public Employee Benefit Association) is offering a new non-Medicare plan through Sharp. You can find details about this new plan, as well as all existing plans, in the City retiree health booklet referenced above. If you are comparing plans and trying to decide which is best for you, don’t forget about CareCounsel! CareCounsel Member Care Specialists are available for your healthcare inquiries and concerns. You can call them at (888) 227-3334 or e-mail staff@carecounsel.com Monday – Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST. CareCounsel also provides helpful videos on their website that may answer your questions about Medicare, here: https://carecounsel.com/medicare.html.   Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, this year’s open enrollment will be a little different than usual. Unlike years past, SDCERS will not be holding in-person open enrollment events this year, such as the annual Open Enrollment Kickoff or Help Day. Instead, the plan providers have recorded the presentations they would have given at SDCERS’ live open enrollment events, which you can access here.   SDCERS’ Call Center will be open for Open Enrollment, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to noon, and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., at (619) 525-3600 and (800) 774-4977. Please be patient with our hard-working staff; we are still working with limited resources and call wait times may be longer than usual.   More...

Cost of Living Adjustment ("COLA") for Fiscal Year 2021

Date: May 20, 2020 Categories: COLA, News Articles, Press Release

At its May 8, 2020 meeting, SDCERS’ Board of Administration approved the Cost of Living Adjustment (“COLA”) that will be applied to eligible SDCERS retirees’ monthly benefit amount from July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021. You will receive a COLA for Fiscal Year 2021 if your retirement or DROP entry date is on or before June 30, 2020. As usual, two separate COLAs were approved and differ depending on the member’s retirement date, as follows:  Members whose retirement date is before July 1, 2020 will receive a COLA increase of 2.0%, and 0.3% will be added to their COLA banks (see below for more details).  The two members who are in the 1981 retirement plan will receive a COLA increase of 1.0%.   Per San Diego Municipal Code section 24.1505 and section 1301 of the Port and Airport Plans, the COLA is calculated every year based on the change in the cost of living between the two previous January firsts, as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index, United States – All items. This year, the change in cost of living between January 1, 2019 and January 1, 2020 was 2.3%.   However, the maximum allowable increase in any given year is 2.0%. In years where the COLA is greater than the maximum 2.0% (such as this year), the excess will be added to what is called a “COLA bank.” A retiree’s COLA bank accumulates based on their fiscal year of retirement (or DROP entry), and each annual retiree group has its own COLA bank.   If you are eligible to receive a Fiscal Year 2021 COLA, the applicable increase will be reflected in your July 2020 pension check.   More...

Special Board & Investment Committee Meetings

Date: May 15, 2020 Categories: Board, Investments, News Articles, Press Release

SDCERS’ Investment Committee will be holding a special meeting on Monday, May 18th beginning at 9:00 a.m. PST. SDCERS’ Board of Administration will also be holding a special meeting on Wednesday, May 20th at 8:30 a.m. PST. These meetings will be held remotely and Investment Committee and Board members will attend their respective meetings telephonically. The meeting room will be closed to the public and only SDCERS staff whose presence is necessary to run the meeting will be onsite.   Although the public will be unable to physically attend these meetings, we have made these meetings available for the public to attend remotely. To attend the Investment Committee meeting, please click the following link at or around 9:00 a.m. PST on May 18th. You will have to download the Zoom application in order to attend.  May 18th Investment Committee meeting Zoom webinar link: https://zoom.us/j/94224022615   Once you are in the meeting, you can click the “View Options” bar at the top of the screen and then “Side-by-side mode” in order to see both the presenter’s screen and the webcams of Committee members and panelists.   SDCERS will also be live streaming the entirety of the Board meeting on May 20th. To access the live stream, go to our Board Meeting Agendas page before the meeting starts and click on the “Agenda” link corresponding to the 5/20/2020 Board of Administration meeting. This will open a new tab with the agenda for the May 20th meeting, which includes an embedded video player that will automatically begin the live stream once the meeting starts. A video recording of the meeting will also be available on this same page the week following the meeting, as well as on our YouTube page.   Please note that members of the public will not be able to speak during these meetings. If you would like to participate in either meeting, please use our Contact Us page to submit public comment in advance of the meeting and identify to which meeting your comment is directed. We will be accepting public comments for the Investment Committee meeting up until 8:30 a.m. on May 18th, and for the special Board meeting up until 8:00 a.m. on May 20th. Any appropriate messages timely received will be read aloud for the record and/or distributed to the Investment Committee members or Board of Administration at the corresponding meeting.   More...

SDCERS’ MAY BOARD MEETING WILL BE HELD REMOTELY – ADVANCE PUBLIC COMMENT ACCEPTED IN WRITING

Date: May 01, 2020 Categories: Board, News Articles

SDCERS’ Disability, Business & Governance, and Investment Committee meetings previously scheduled for May 7th have been canceled. However, SDCERS’ Board of Adm