Township of Lower Gwynedd, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
 
GENERAL REFERENCES
Township Police — See Ch. 244.
Police Protection Agreement — See Ch. 210.
Social Security — See Ch. 1280, Section 290.01.

§ 292.01 Maintenance of existing fund.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
The existing Police Pension Fund established initially under the provisions of Ordinances 19 and 27 (as amended) and transferred into the new fund established under the provisions of Ordinance 137 (as amended) and as governed by the provisions of Resolution No. 92-22 (as amended from time to time by the Board of Supervisors) shall hereinafter be maintained and governed by the provisions of this newly enacted Chapter 292 entitled "Police Pension Fund."

§ 292.02 Definitions.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
Age. "Age" shall mean the age attained by the employee at his or her last birthday.
(b) 
Anniversary Date. "Anniversary date" shall mean any January 1 after the effective date.
(c) 
Average Applicable Compensation. "Average applicable compensation" shall mean the average monthly salary of the employee at any time of reference computed over the last 36 months (or such shorter period as represents the member's total period of continuous employment by the Township) of his continuous employment by the Township prior to such date of reference. For purposes of computing average applicable compensation, actual monthly salary shall include base pay, longevity pay, overtime, night-differential pay (if any) and disability insurance benefits paid from a Township-sponsored plan, but shall exclude reimbursed expenses or payments in lieu of expenses, nonsalary compensation (including, but not limited to, fringe benefits provided by the Township) or any other payments or allowances (such as uniform allowances). Average applicable compensation shall include pickup contributions (if any) paid for the member by the Township pursuant to Section 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code and any elective salary deferrals made by the member pursuant to Sections 457 or 125 of the Internal Revenue Code.
(d) 
Board. "Board" shall mean the Board of Supervisors of Lower Gwynedd Township.
(e) 
Chief Administrative Officer. "Chief Administrative Officer" shall mean the person who has primary responsibility for the execution of the administrative affairs of this pension plan or the designee of that person.
(f) 
Early Retirement Benefit. "Early retirement benefit" shall mean the retirement benefits described in Section 292.05(b) of this chapter.
(g) 
Employee. "Employee" shall mean any person in the full-time employ of the Township Police Department whose customary employment is for not less than 40 hours a week.
(h) 
Fund. "Fund" shall mean all assets held by the trustee under the trust agreement relating to this Police Pension Plan.
(i) 
Member. "Member" shall mean any employee who has satisfied eligibility requirements established in Section 292.03 of this chapter.
(j) 
Normal Retirement Benefit. "Normal retirement benefit" shall mean the retirement benefits described in Section 292.05(a) of this chapter.
(k) 
Normal Retirement Date. For employees hired prior to January 1, 2013, "normal retirement date" shall mean the next day of the month following the date on which the member attains age 50 and completes 25 years of service, whichever is later to occur. For employees hired on or after January 1, 2013, "normal retirement date" shall mean the next day of the month following the date on which the member attains age 55 and completes 25 years of service, whichever is later to occur.
[Amended 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]
(l) 
Plan. "Plan" shall mean the Police Pension Plan for Lower Gwynedd Township, as herein set forth and as the same may hereafter be amended.
(m) 
Plan Year. "Plan year" shall mean a period of 12 consecutive months commencing on any January 1st and ending on the following December 31st.
(n) 
Police Pension Committee. "Police Pension Committee" shall mean a five-member committee composed of two Board members, the Township Manager, one member of the Police Department and a member at large selected by the Board of Supervisors.
(o) 
Salary. "Salary" shall mean earnings including base pay, longevity pay, night-differential (if any), overtime pay, pickup contributions pursuant to Section 414(h) of the Internal Revenue Code disability insurance benefits, and elective salary deferrals made by the member pursuant to Sections 457 or 125 of the Internal Revenue Code, but shall exclude reimbursement expenses or payments in lieu of expenses, nonsalary compensation, including, but not limited to fringe benefits provided by the Township and any other allowances paid by the Township (i.e., uniform allowances.)
(p) 
Service. "Service" shall mean the aggregate of the member's total periods of employment as a full-time employee of the Township's Police Department. If a member enters military service, either voluntarily or by conscription, after he has been employed for at least six months, such time spent in the Armed Forces of the United States during a period of national emergency shall be counted as service for purposes of the Plan, provided that such member returns to police service with the Township within six months after his discharge or release from such active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States. The time spent in military service due to voluntary extension of such military service during a period of peacetime shall not be included as service for the purposes of this Plan. Time spent on Reserve or National Guard Training shall be included as service for purposes of this plan.
(q) 
Township. "Township" shall mean Lower Gwynedd Township, Montgomery County, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
(r) 
Trust Agreement. "Trust agreement" shall mean the contract between the Township and the trustee establishing the terms by which and under which the Fund is invested, distributed, accounted for and terminated, as the same now exists and as it may hereafter be amended.
(s) 
Trustee. "Trustee" shall mean the Board of Supervisors of Lower Gwynedd Township or any other agency or person appointed by such to serve in that capacity as set forth in the trust agreement.
(t) 
Vesting. "Vesting" shall mean a nonforfeitable portion of the normal retirement benefit. See Section 292.07.

§ 292.03 Eligibility.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
All persons who are employees (as defined in this Plan) as of the effective date hereof shall be a member as of the effective date.
(b) 
Any person who becomes an employee after the effective date hereof shall become a member on the first day of service as an employee.

§ 292.04 Contributions.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
Contributions by Members. Members shall pay into the Fund, monthly, an amount equal to not less than 5% nor more than 8% of monthly compensation. Where positions covered by the Fund are included in an agreement under the Federal Social Security Act, members shall pay into the Fund, monthly, 5% of monthly compensation. Notwithstanding the above, member contributions may, on an annual basis, be reduced or eliminated by ordinance or resolution. Salary for this purpose shall be as defined in Section 292.02 of this chapter. Individual records of contributions by members shall be maintained, including all interest credited to the individual account. Interest to be credited shall be 5% per annum. Interest shall be credited from the end of the plan year in which paid to the end of the month after which a refund becomes payable.
[Amended 8-26-2008 by Ord. No. 460[1]]
[1]
Editor’s Note: This ordinance also stated that it takes effect and is in force retroactively, beginning 4-17-2002, the effective date of Act 30.
(b) 
Refund of Member's Contributions. Any member who for any reason shall be ineligible to receive a pension after having made contributions shall be entitled to a refund of his individual account balance; such refund is payable immediately upon discontinuance of his employment with the police force or within a reasonable time (not more than 45 days after discontinuance). If such discontinuance is due to death, then such refund shall be paid to his designated beneficiary or, in the absence hereof, to his estate. If the disabled or retired member is receiving a benefit by reason of disability or retirement, then the refund payable to the beneficiary is equal to the individual account balance at the date of disability or retirement, less any payments made to the Member.
(c) 
Deposits. Contributions by members shall be remitted to the trustees not less than monthly.
(d) 
State Aid. The portion of the payments made by the State Treasurer to the Township and designated by the Board to be allocated to the Police Pension Fund from money received from taxes paid upon premiums by foreign casualty insurance companies for purposes of pension retirement or disability benefits for policemen shall be used as follows: to reduce the unfunded liability, or, after such liability has been fully funded, to apply against the annual obligation of the Township for future service costs, or to the extent that the payment may be in excess of such obligations, and to reduce member contributions pursuant to Section 292.04(a) hereof.
(e) 
Township Contributions. Subject to the provisions and limitations set forth in other sections of this Plan, the Township shall contribute the amounts certified to be necessary by the Fund's actuary to provide the benefits provided by this Plan.
(f) 
Military Service. Any member employed for a period of at least six months and who thereafter shall enter into the military service of the United States shall have credited to his employment record for pension or retirement benefits all of the time spent by him in such military service, if such person returns or has heretofore returned to his employment within six months after his separation from the service.
(g) 
Other Contributions. The Fund shall be authorized to receive by gift, grant, devise or bequest, any money or property, real, personal or mixed, in trust for the benefit of the Fund. The trustee of the Fund shall be subject to such directions not inconsistent with this Plan as the donors of such funds and property may prescribe.

§ 292.05 Retirement benefits.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002; Ord. 435. Passed 9-6-2005]
(a) 
Normal Retirement. Each member may retire on or at any time after his normal retirement date. Any member so retiring shall be entitled to receive a monthly pension commencing the date of actual retirement and ending with the payment made as of the first day of the month in which his death occurs. For employees hired prior to January 1, 2013, the normal retirement date shall mean the next day of the month following the date on which the member attains age 50 and completes 25 years of service, whichever is later to occur. For employees hired on or after January 1, 2013, the normal retirement date shall mean the next day of the month following the date on which the member attains age 55 and completes 25 years of service, whichever is later to occur. The monthly pension to which such retired member shall be entitled to under this plan shall be equal to 50% of such member's average applicable compensation. The member's first benefit check shall be prorated to correspond to the member's date of retirement. In calculating the prorated first benefit check, the monthly benefit amount shall be reduced by multiplying it by a fraction, which numerator consists of the date of the month on which the early retirement is effective and the denominator consists of the total number of days in that month. The payment of any previously withheld, prorata portion of each eligible member's first normal retirement benefit check shall be retroactive to July 1, 2001.
[Amended 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]
(b) 
Early Retirement Benefit. The early retirement benefit shall be provided to a member with 20 or more years of service who terminates employment prior to the completion of superannuation retirement age and service requirements and who files a written application for an early retirement benefit with the Township Board. The early retirement benefit shall become effective as of the date of early retirement which shall be designated on the application and shall be the actuarial equivalent of a partial superannuation retirement benefit calculated as follows:
(1) 
A partial superannuation retirement benefit shall be determined by applying the percentage that the member's years of service bear to the years of service that the member would have rendered had the member continued to be employed until his superannuation retirement date to the gross pension amount calculated using the average applicable compensation during the appropriate period prior to the member's termination of employment.
(2) 
The actuarial equivalent of the partial superannuation retirement benefit shall be determined by actuarially reducing the partial superannuation retirement benefit to reflect that it will commence on the effective date of the early retirement rather than on the date on which the member would have completed superannuation age and service requirements. The actuarial reduction shall be calculated using the actuarial assumptions reported in the last actuarial valuation report filed with the Public Employee Retirement Commission under the act of December 18, 1984 (P.L. 1005, No. 205), known as the "Municipal Pension Plan Funding Standard and Recovery Act."
(3) 
The member's first benefit check shall be prorated to correspond to the member's date of early retirement. In calculating the first benefit check, the monthly benefit amount shall be reduced by multiplying it by a fraction, which numerator shall consist of the date of the month on which the early retirement is effective and which denominator shall consist of the total number of days in that month. The payment of any previously withheld pro rata portion of each eligible member's first early retirement benefit check shall be retroactive to July 1, 2001.
(c) 
Postponed Retirement. An employee shall be allowed to continue as an employee beyond his normal retirement date. In such case, the employee shall remain a member of the Plan until he actually retires or ceases to be an employee and ceases to make any contributions required pursuant to Section 292.04(a) hereof.
(d) 
Cost-of-Living Adjustment. The following provisions shall apply to all cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) calculated for all members who retired after December 31, 1988, and before January 1, 1999:
(1) 
At every three-year anniversary of the retired member's retirement date, the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers (CPI-U) for Philadelphia shall be examined and if that Index has increased by 9% or more from the Index which existed on the date of retirement or the date of the previous three-year anniversary of retirement, there shall be an increase in the basic retirement benefit of 5%. If such increase in the Index over the three-year period is less than 9%, the basic retirement benefit shall be increased by 1/3 of the total Index increased from the date of retirement or the date of the previous three-year anniversary of retirement. After 1998, the CPI-U for the U.S. city average shall be used instead of the CPI-U for Philadelphia. The basic retirement benefit shall not include the portion of the monthly pension resulting from the length-of-service increment [Section 292.05(g)].
(2) 
The total COLA shall not exceed a 20% increase above the initial retirement benefit.
(3) 
In no event shall the total benefit exceed 75% of the average applicable compensation used in computing the initial retirement benefit.
(4) 
No COLA shall be granted which would impair the actuarial soundness of the Pension Fund.
(e) 
COLA Adjustments after December 31, 1998. For all members who retired after December 31, 1998, COLA adjustments shall be calculated in accordance with the applicable collective bargaining agreement in effect as of the date of the retired member's retirement.
[Amended 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]
(f) 
The following provisions shall apply to all COLAs:
(1) 
No COLA shall be applied which would reduce the monthly pension benefit to an amount less than the initial monthly pension.
(2) 
The COLA shall not be applied to the portion of the monthly pension resulting from the length-of-service increment [Section 292.05(g)].
(3) 
The COLAs shall not be applied to the benefit of the surviving spouse nor a dependent child.
(4) 
No cost-of-living increase shall be granted which would impair the actuarial soundness of the Pension Fund.
(5) 
On and after the effective date of termination of the Plan pursuant to Section 292.13 hereof, no further COLAs will be made.
(6) 
No COLAs shall be provided for members hired on or after January 1, 2013.
[Added 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]
(g) 
Length-of-Service Increment. A member's normal retirement benefit will be increased by a $400 per year length-of-service increment, provided that member served after 25 years of service. Such increment will be paid in addition to other entitlements pursuant to Chapter 292 hereof but shall be limited to a total maximum increment of $1,200 per year.
(h) 
Disability Benefit.
[Amended 8-26-2008 by Ord. No. 460[1]]
(1) 
"Total disability" shall mean any condition arising from line of duty, service-connected illness or injury which precludes a member from performing the duties associated with the normal occupational requirements of any position within the Police Department as certified by a physician designated by the municipality. Any member who suffers a total disability shall be entitled to receive a disability benefit from this plan commencing at the date of the member's disability. The benefit shall be equal to 50% of the member's salary at the time the disability was incurred, reduced by the amount of social security disability benefits received for the same injury, if any. The Board reserves the right to require disabled members to present evidence of total disability and of the continuance of such condition from time to time and further reserves the right to require members to submit to the medical examination by practitioners(s) selected by the Board as a precondition to the continued payment of benefits. If the disabled member dies before he receives total disability benefits from the Fund in an amount equal to his total contributions, plus credited interest, the unpaid balance shall be paid in a lump sum to his designated beneficiary.
[Amended 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]
(2) 
In no event, however, will disability benefits be less than those provided by the plan ordinances in effect prior to enactment of Act 30 as follows: the benefit shall be equal to 50% of the average applicable compensation calculated as of the time the disability commenced off-set by 100% of the amount of any payments for which the member shall be eligible under the Pennsylvania Occupational Disease Act of June 21, 1939 (P.L. 556, No. 284), as amended, 77 P.S. § 1201 et seq. The benefit shall commence as of the first day of the month after the onset of the disability as certified by a licensed physician chosen by the Board. Disability benefits will be paid on a monthly basis and continue until the member recovers, dies or reaches his normal retirement date. Upon attaining his normal retirement date, the disabled member shall become a retired member and shall then be eligible for a pension benefit. The amount of the pension benefit shall be equal to 50% of the average applicable compensation calculated as of the time the disability commenced, plus any length of service increment payable by reason of the fact that service is credited up until the normal retirement date. This pension benefit shall commence on the member’s normal retirement date and shall be payable to and including the first day of the month in which the member dies.
[1]
Editor’s Note: This ordinance also stated that it takes effect and is in force retroactively, beginning 4-17-2002, the effective date of Act 30.
(i) 
Deferred Retirement Option Plan.
(1) 
Definitions.
A. 
Beneficiary. "Beneficiary" shall mean the individual identified by a police officer to receive the contents of an officer's DROP account in the event of the death of an officer during period in which the officer is participating in the DROP, but before the officer separates from employment.
B. 
DROP. "DROP" shall mean the Deferred Retirement Option Plan.
C. 
DROP Account. "DROP account" shall mean the separate account created to accept DROP participants' monthly pension check while a DROP participant.
D. 
Fund or Plan. "Fund" or "Plan" shall mean the Police Pension Plan for Lower Gwynedd Township.
E. 
Police Officer. "Police officers" shall mean the police officers of Lower Gwynedd Township.
(2) 
Eligibility. As of the effective date of this subsection, police officers who have not retired prior to the implementation of the DROP program may enter into DROP on the first day of any month following completion of 25 years of credited service and attaining the age of 50.
A. 
Written Election. A police officer electing to participate in the DROP must complete and execute a drop option form prepared by the Township, which shall evidence the member's participation in the DROP. The form must be signed by the member and notarized and submitted to the Township prior to the date on which the member wishes the DROP option to be effective. The DROP option notice shall include an irrevocable notice to the Township, by the member, that the member shall resign from employment with the Lower Gwynedd Township Police Department effective on a specific date (the "resignation date"). In no event shall the resignation date be longer than forty-eight (48) months from the execution of the DROP option form. An officer shall cease to work as a police officer on the officer's resignation date, unless the Township terminates or honorably discharges the officer prior to the resignation date. In addition, all retirement documents required by the Police Pension Plan Administrator must be filed and presented to the Township for approval of retirement and payment of pension. Once a retirement application has been approved by the Township, it is irrevocable.
B. 
Pension Contributions. A police officer shall not be required to make any contributions to the Fund during his/her DROP period.
(3) 
Limitation on Pension Accrual. After the effective date of the DROP option, the police officer shall no longer earn or accrue additional years of continuous service for pension purposes.
(4) 
Benefit Calculation. For all retirement Fund purposes, continuous service of a police officer participating in the DROP shall remain as it existed on the effective date of commencement of participation in the DROP. Service thereafter shall not be recognized or used for the calculation or determination of any benefits payable by the Police Pension Plan of Lower Gwynedd Township. The average monthly compensation of the police officer for pension calculation purposes shall remain as it existed on the effective date of commencement of participation in the DROP. Earnings or increases in earnings thereafter shall not be recognized or used for the calculation or determination of any benefits payable by the Pension Plan. The pension benefit payable to the members shall increase only as a result of cost of living adjustments in effect on the effective date of the member's participation in the DROP or by applicable cost of living adjustments granted thereafter.
(5) 
Payments to the DROP Account. The monthly retirement benefits that would have been payable had the police officer elected to cease employment and receive a normal retirement benefit shall, upon the police officer commencing participation in DROP, be paid into the separate account established to receive the participant's monthly pension payments. This account shall be designated the "DROP account." An individual officer's DROP account shall be a self-directed investment vehicle with the Officer having exclusive control over the investment of his or her DROP account monies. The Township accepts no responsibility and makes no guarantee for the performance of any investments made by the officer, nor shall the Township guarantee or be required to guarantee that an Officer's DROP account generate a specific amount of earnings or income or any earnings or income at all. Any investment losses occurring in a Officer's DROP account shall be solely the responsibility of the Officer and the Township assumes no liability or responsibility for the same.
(6) 
Accrual of Non-Pension Benefits. After a police officer elects to participate in the DROP program, all other contractual benefits shall continue to accrue with the exception of those provisions relating to the Police Pension Plan.
(7) 
Payout. Upon the resignation date set forth in the police officer's drop option notice or such date as the Township separates the member from employment, the retirement benefits payable to the police officer or the police officer's designated beneficiary, if applicable, shall be paid to the police officer or beneficiary and shall no longer be paid to the police officer's deferred retirement option account. Within thirty (30) days following termination of a police officer's employment pursuant to their participating in the DROP program, the balance in the police officer's DROP account shall be paid to the police officer in a single lump sum payment or at the police officer's option, in any manner permitted by law.
(8) 
Disability During DROP. If a police officer becomes temporarily incapacitated during his participation in DROP, that police officer shall continue to participate in the DROP program as if fully employed. The police officer shall receive disability pay in the same amount as disabled police officers that are not participating in DROP. In no event shall a police officer on temporary disability have the ability to draw from his DROP account. However, notwithstanding any other provision in this paragraph, if a police officer is disabled and has not returned to work as of his required resignation date, then such resignation shall take precedence over all other provisions herein and said officer shall be required to resign. If a police officer becomes permanently disabled during the DROP period, the officer shall be honorably discharged from employment; on such date, the police officer may obtain the contents of his DROP account and, thereafter, commence receiving his normal pension benefit.
(9) 
Death. If a DROP participant dies before the DROP account balances are paid, the participant members' designated beneficiary shall have the same rights as the police officer to withdraw the account balance.
(10) 
Forfeiture of Benefits. Notwithstanding a police officer's participation in the DROP Plan, a police officer who is convicted or pleads guilty to engaging in criminal misconduct which constitutes a "crime related to public office or public employment," as that phrase is defined in Pennsylvania's Pension Forfeiture Act, 43 P.S. §§ 1311 through 1314 and interpreted thereunder, shall forfeit his right to receive a pension, including any amounts currently deposited in the DROP account. In such a case, the police officer shall only be entitled to receive the contributions, if any, made by the police officer to the Fund, without interest.
(11) 
Amendment. Any amendments to the DROP Plan shall be consistent with the provisions covering deferred retirement option plans set forth in any applicable collective bargaining agreement and shall be binding upon all future DROP participants and upon all DROP participants who have balances in their deferred retirement option accounts. The DROP Plan may only be amended by a written instrument, not by any oral agreement or past practice.
(12) 
Effective Date. The effective date of the changes in this subsection is the date of adoption of the subsection by the Township.
(13) 
Construal of Provisions. A police officer's election to participate in the DROP program shall in no way be construed as a limitation on the Township's right to suspend or to terminate a police officer for just cause or to grant the police officer an honorable discharge based upon a physical or mental inability to perform his or her duties.
(14) 
Severability. The provisions of this subsection shall be severable: and if any of its provisions shall be held to be unconstitutional or illegal, the validity of any of the remaining provisions of the subsection shall not be affected thereby. It is hereby expressly declared as the intent of the Township that this subsection would have been adopted had such unconstitutional or illegal provision or provisions not been included herein. In the event that the DROP provision is declared invalid or illegal by a court of competent jurisdiction or through an administrative determination of the Office of the Auditor General, the police officers shall have the right to bargain in accordance with Act 111 over deletion of this benefit. It is expressly understood that any such bargaining shall not involve bargaining over a replacement provision.

§ 292.06 Death benefits.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002; Ord. 412. Passed 8-19-2003]
(a) 
Preretirement Death Benefit. The surviving spouse of a member who dies before his pension has vested or, if no spouse survives or if he or she survives and subsequently dies, the child or children under the age of 18 years, or if attending college, under or attaining the age of 23 years, of the member shall be entitled to receive a refund of all contributions made by him and then on deposit in the Trust Fund, plus interest thereon, computed at the rate described in Section 292.04(a), unless the member has designated another beneficiary for this purpose.
[Amended 8-26-2008 by Ord. No. 460[1]]
[1]
Editor’s Note: This ordinance also stated that it takes effect and is in force retroactively, beginning 4-17-2002, the effective date of Act 30.
(b) 
Pension Benefit to Surviving Spouse and Dependent Children. If a member dies survived by a spouse or dependent children, after having become eligible to receive a pension benefit; i.e., he was eligible because he was already receiving a pension or he met the age and service requirements, but he had not yet retired, then a monthly pension benefit shall be provided, as follows:
(1) 
The amount of the monthly pension benefit shall be equal to 50% of the normal retirement benefit the member was receiving or would have been entitled to receive if he had been retired when he died.
(2) 
The monthly pension benefit is payable to the surviving spouse. If there is no surviving spouse, the benefit is payable to the guardian of surviving dependent children until the last dependent child dies or reaches his 18th birthday, whichever comes first. Dependent children shall include stepchildren, adopted children, and any child conceived at the time of the member's death and thereafter born to the member's spouse.
(3) 
If such member has no surviving spouse or dependent children, the member's beneficiary, or estate, if no beneficiary survives, shall be entitled to a refund of his accumulated member's contribution with credited interest reduced by the amount of pension benefit received by the member pursuant to Section 292.05 hereof.
(c) 
Killed in Service. If a member is killed while in service as a police officer for the municipality, and he or she is survived by a spouse or dependent child or children or a parent or parents, then survivor benefits shall be provided by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in accordance with Act 51 of 2009 and not by the Township.
[Amended 10-8-2013 by Ord. No. 490]

§ 292.07 Vesting and severance of employment.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
If a member leaves the employ of the Township or ceases to be a member whether by reason of his transfer, resignation or discharge, or by reason of disability or retirement other than after becoming eligible for benefits pursuant to Section 292.05 of this Plan, he shall be entitled to a refund of all contributions made by him and then on deposit in the Trust Fund, plus interest thereon, computed at the rate described in Section 292.04(a).
(b) 
However, a member who has completed 12 or more years of service may elect either Paragraph (b)(1) or (2) as described below:
(1) 
He may elect to leave his contributions plus interest in the Trust Fund so as to receive a vested pension benefit to start at his normal retirement date. He must file with the Board of Supervisors within 90 days of the date he ceases to be a full-time police officer a written notice of his intention to vest. The amount of the vested pension benefit shall be (x) divided by (y) where (x) is the number of years of service at date of termination and (y) is the number of years of service which the member would have had if he worked until the normal retirement date, multiplied by the benefits described in Section 292.05(a). Years of service shall be measured in years and completed months.
(2) 
He may elect to receive a refund of all contributions made by him and then on deposit in the Trust Fund, plus interest thereon, computed at the rate described in Section 292.04(a). If he elects to receive the refund of his contributions plus interest, he would forfeit the pension benefit as outlined in Paragraph (b)(1) above.

§ 292.08 Method of distribution of benefits.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
Refund benefits becoming distributable pursuant to Section 292.07(a) and death benefits becoming distributable pursuant to the provision of Section 292.06(a) shall be paid in the form of a lump-sum distribution.
(b) 
The normal form of all benefits payable hereunder shall be a pension for the life of the member commencing on the date specified and ending with a payment made on the first day of the month in which the member dies, subject, however, to the payment of a death benefit calculated pursuant to Section 292.06(b).

§ 292.09 Management of fund.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
It is the duty of the trustee to pay the benefits to members and their beneficiaries, as provided in Sections 292.05, 292.06 and 292.07, in accordance with the instructions received from the Board, provided, however, that the duty of the trustee to make such payments is wholly contingent upon the sufficiency of the Fund for such purposes. Except as may otherwise be required by state or federal law, neither the trustee nor the Township in any way guarantees the sufficiency of the Fund to make such payments nor assumes any liability for the insufficiency thereof.
(b) 
The Township may employ an actuary, investment advisors, counsel, or other professional consultants from time to time in connection with the operation of the Fund or of this Plan. Such persons or entities shall be compensated by the Township at such rates as may be agreed upon by the Board. Such compensation may be paid from the Fund to the extent authorized by applicable law.
(c) 
The trustee shall make an annual determination of the fair market value of the Fund as of the anniversary date and as of such additional dates as the Board may direct. The fair market value of the Fund shall be reported to the actuary who shall calculate the amount to be contributed to the Fund by the Township with respect to each plan year in accordance with the assumptions most recently adopted by the Board for the purpose of such computations, provided, however, that the liability of the Township to make such contributions is subject to all of the conditions and limitations set forth elsewhere in this Plan.

§ 292.10 The Board.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
The Plan shall be administered by the Board of Supervisors. The Board shall make and adopt rules and regulations for the efficient administration of the Plan.
(b) 
The Board shall keep all data, records and documents pertaining to the administration of the Plan and shall execute all documents necessary to carry out the provisions of the Plan, and shall provide all such data, records and documents to the trustee, the actuary and other professionals whose services are employed pursuant to Section 292.09(b) of this Plan.
(c) 
The Board shall construe the Plan, shall determine any questions or facts arising under the Plan and shall make all decisions required of it under the Plan or the trust agreement and its construction thereof, and such decisions taken thereon in good faith shall be final and conclusive. It may correct any defect or supply any omission or reconcile any inconsistency in such manner and to such extent as it shall deem expedient to carry the Plan into effect, and it shall be the sole judge of such expediency. The Board shall act uniformly with respect to matters coming before it concerning employees in similar circumstances.
(d) 
The Board shall serve without bond except as may be otherwise required by law and without compensation for its services as such.
(e) 
The members of the Board, and each of them, shall be free of all liability for any act or omission except by willful misconduct or gross negligence, and each of them shall be fully indemnified by the Township against all judgements not involving findings of their respective personal or collective willful misconduct or gross negligence and against all cost, including counsel fees, incurred in defense of actions brought against them.
(f) 
The Board shall make available to members, retired members and terminated members and to their beneficiaries, for examination during business hours, such records as pertain to the person examining.
(g) 
To enable the Board to perform its function, the Township shall supply full and timely information to it on all matters relating to the pay of all members, their retirement, death, termination of employment and such other pertinent facts as the Board may require; and the Board shall advise the trustee of such of the foregoing facts as may be pertinent to the trustee's administration of the Trust and shall give proper instructions to the trustee for the carrying out of the purposes of this Plan.
(h) 
The Board shall enact such rules and regulations for the conduct of its business and for the administration of the Plan as it may consider desirable, provided the same shall not be in conflict with any of the provisions of the Plan. All actions of the Board shall be taken at meetings at which at least four members shall be present, or by written resolutions occurred in by not less than four of its members shall be the action of the entire Board. Written minutes shall be kept of the meetings and actions of the Board.

§ 292.11 The Police Pension Committee.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
The Committee shall assist the Board in carrying out the duties and responsibilities as set forth in Section 292.10(a),(b) and (c) of this Plan.
(b) 
The Committee shall have no authority to make decisions. It serves strictly in an advisory capacity to the Board.
(c) 
Committee members will meet at least semiannually to review the plan administration, fund management, plan provisions and other matters which from time to time may affect the Plan. The Committee will present its findings and/or recommendations to the Board.
(d) 
The Committee may employ professional consultants pursuant to Section 292.09(b) of this Plan.

§ 292.12 Provisions relating to Township.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
It is the expectation of the Township that it will continue this Pension Plan indefinitely and will from time to time contribute to the Fund such amounts as may be required by Act 205 to provide the benefits set forth in the Plan, but continuance of the Plan is not assumed as an obligation of the Township and the right is reserved by the Township at any time to reduce, suspend or discontinue its contributions consistent with applicable law.
(b) 
The Township assumes no obligation or responsibility with respect to the operation of the Plan and does not guarantee the payment of the benefits therein provided for members of the Plan. The Township shall have no liability with respect to the administration of the Fund held by the trustees, and payments made under the provisions of any ordinance establishing, amending, or maintaining the Plan shall not be a charge on any other fund in the Treasury of the Township or under its control, save the Uniformed Employee's Pension Fund herein provided for.
(c) 
Nothing contained in the Plan shall be held or construed as a contract or guarantee of employment nor to create any liability upon the Township to retain any person in its service. The Township reserves the full right to discontinue the service of any person without any liability except for salary or wages that may be due and unpaid, whenever in its judgement its best interests so require, and such discontinuance shall be without regard to this Plan.

§ 292.13 Termination or amendment of plan.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
The Township may amend, curtail or terminate this Plan at any time, provided, however, that no amendment affecting the trustee shall be made without its consent (other than an amendment having the effect of terminating the Plan), nor shall any amendment be made which will in any manner divert any part of the Fund to any purpose other than the exclusive benefit of members or their beneficiaries (except that upon termination, such diversion may be made after all of the fixed and contingent liabilities to members and their beneficiaries have been met), nor shall any amendment be made at any time which will in any manner divest any benefit then vested in a Member.
(b) 
In the event of termination of this Plan, the trustee, upon written instructions from the Board, shall allocate the assets then remaining in the Fund, to the extent that such assets are sufficient, to members and retired members in the following order of precedence:
(1) 
To members and retired members in an amount equal to their respective contributions with interest, reduced in cases of retired members by any prior distribution made.
(2) 
To provide benefits due retired members in the proportion that the pension earned by each member bears to the total pension carried for all such members.
(3) 
The remaining assets, if any, to each of the remaining members in the proportion that his pension credits earned to date of termination bears to the total pension credits so earned for all such remaining members.

§ 292.14 Miscellaneous provisions.

[Ord. 403. Passed 8-20-2002]
(a) 
No benefit under this Plan shall be subject in any manner to anticipation, alienation, sale, transfer, assignment, pledge or encumbrance, nor to seizure, attachment, or other legal process for the debts of any member or member's beneficiary. This provision shall not apply to a qualified domestic relations order defined in the Internal Revenue Code Section 4l4(p), and those other domestic relations orders permitted to be so treated by the Board under the provisions of the Retirement Equity Act of 1984. The Board shall establish a written procedure to determine the qualified status of domestic relations orders to administer distributions under such qualified orders. Further, to the extent provided under a qualified domestic relations order, a former spouse of a participant shall be treated as the spouse or surviving spouse for all purposes under this Plan.
(b) 
Anything heretofore contained in this Plan to the contrary notwithstanding, it is the intention of the Township that any action herein provided to be taken by the trustee shall be taken only in accordance with written instructions of the Board given in such detail as to preclude the exercise by the trustee of discretion in performance thereof.
(c) 
In no circumstances, whether upon amendment or termination of this Plan or otherwise, shall any part of the Fund be used or diverted to any purpose other than the exclusive benefit of members or their beneficiaries until all of the actual obligations to such member or member's beneficiaries have been met.
(d) 
If the Board deems any person incapable of receiving benefits to which he is entitled by reason of minority, illness, infirmity, or other incapacity, it may direct the trustee to make payment directly for the benefit of such person, or to any person selected by the Board to disburse it, whose receipt shall be complete acquittance therefor. Such payment shall, to the extent therefor, discharge all liability of the Township, the trustee or the Fund.
(e) 
Should any provision of this Plan be determined to be void by any court, the Plan will continue to operate and, to the extent necessary, will be deemed not to include the provision determined to be void.
(f) 
Headings and captions provided herein are for convenience only and shall not be deemed part of the Plan.
(g) 
This Plan shall be construed and applied under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania where not in conflict with federal laws which shall prevail.
(h) 
All ordinances or resolutions, or portions thereof, inconsistent herewith are repealed.