Township of Lower Moreland, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Lower Moreland as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Manager — See Ch. 32.
Salaries and compensation — See Ch. 58.
Social security and retirement — See Ch. 62.
Workers' Compensation Trust — See Ch. 64.
[Adopted 11-4-1957 by Ord. No. 57]

§ 45-1 Creation of fund; restatement of plan; Chief Administrative Officer.

[Amended 2-20-2002 by Ord. No. 528[1]]
A. 
The Township hereby creates a Municipal Police Pension Fund to be maintained by a charge against each member of the police force, by annual appropriations made by the Township and by payments made by the State Treasurer to the Township Treasurer from moneys received from taxes upon premiums by foreign casualty insurance companies for the purpose of pension retirement for policemen and by gifts, grants, devises or bequests which may be granted to the pension fund.
B. 
The Township of Lower Moreland hereby adopts the Amended and Restated Municipal Police Pension Plan effective January 1, 2014, including an extension to the DROP period from 36 months to 48 months, all as set forth on the attached 2014 Amended and Restated Municipal Police Pension Plan document, a copy of which is incorporated herein as Exhibit A to this subsection.[2]
[Amended 1-21-2004 by Ord. No. 552; 1-17-2007 by Ord. No. 593; 1-21-2009 by Ord. No. 611; 7-12-2011 by Ord. No. 641; 11-16-2011 by Ord. No. 646; 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
[2]
Editor's Note: Said exhibit is on file in the Township offices.
C. 
The Lower Moreland Township Manager is designated as the Chief Administrative Officer of the plan. The Township Manager or the agent of the employer is authorized and directed to execute the attached amendment and restatement of the plan.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: The amended and restated plan is on file in the Township offices.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance provided for an effective date of 1-1-2001. This ordinance also provided that each employee who was previously a participant shall remain a participant, and no employee who was a participant in the plan before the date of amendment shall receive a benefit under this amended plan that is less than the benefit he was then entitled to receive under the plan as of the day prior to the amendment.

§ 45-2 Contributions to fund.

[Amended 8-15-1990 by Ord. No. 397; 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
Annual contribution rates for members shall be determined by the Township's actuary, after conducting an actuarial study of the plan. The actuarial study conducted for purposes of determining the members' contribution rate shall be completed no later than December 15 of the previous year. The rate of the members' contribution shall be calculated in accordance with Section 6 of Act 600, 53 P.S. § 772. Except in the event of fraud or mistake, the contribution rate recommended by the actuary shall be final and binding and shall not be subject to the grievance and arbitration procedure under the collective bargaining agreement between the Township and the Police Benevolent Association.

§ 45-3 Administration.

[Amended 11-10-1969 by Ord. No. 156]
A. 
The Municipal Police Pension Fund shall be administered by the Township Commissioners.
B. 
The Township Commissioners shall appoint a corporate fiduciary to serve in that capacity at any time of reference. The trust shall be administered and managed under an appropriate deed of trust to be prepared by the Township Solicitor and approved by the Commissioners of the Township of Lower Moreland.

§ 45-4 Monthly retirement benefits.

[Amended 10-9-1967 by Ord. No. 134; 6-17-1982 by Ord. No. 320; 8-17-1983 by Ord. No. 329; 4-18-2001 by Ord. No. 518; 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
A. 
Full monthly retirement benefits shall be paid out of the pension fund to each police officer who has honorably served in the Township for an aggregate of at least 25 years and has attained the age of at least 50 years.
B. 
Any full-time police officer who has completed at least 12 years of total service with the Township and who then retires before becoming eligible for full pension benefits shall be paid a partial superannuation retirement allowance determined by applying the percentage which his years of actual service bears to the years of service which he would have rendered had he continued to work until his superannuation retirement date and then applying such percentage to the full monthly pension benefits to which he would have been entitled had he worked to his superannuation retirement date; provided, nevertheless, that, for this purpose, such full monthly pension benefits shall be computed by using the police officer's average monthly salary for the thirty-six-month period preceding his date of actual retirement. Such superannuation benefit shall be payable to an officer commencing on the date on which he would have satisfied the service and age requirements for full pension benefits had he lived and continued in service as a police officer for Lower Moreland Township. A police officer may elect, in place of the foregoing benefits, to take a full refund of contributions, with interest, computed in accordance with § 45-14, in which case the right to any further benefits is thereby terminated and forfeited. The election provided for above shall be made in writing within 30 days of the retirement of the officer from the service of Lower Moreland Township. The provisions of this subsection shall apply to termination of service as a full-time police officer for any reason, except death or disability. In the event of death or disability, the benefits applicable in such events under this article shall apply.
C. 
In the case of a police officer who has completed 20 years of total uniformed service with the Township, the police officer may terminate employment and file a written application for an early retirement benefit. The early retirement benefit shall be equal to the partial superannuation benefit as described in § 45-4B for his years of service as of his early retirement date actuarially reduced as determined by the Township's actuary.

§ 45-5 Monthly disability benefits.

[Amended 11-10-1969 by Ord. No. 156; 3-18-1987 by Ord. No. 364; 8-15-1990 by Ord. No. 397; 6-16-1993 by Ord. No. 435; 7-16-1997 by Ord. No. 476]
Monthly disability benefits shall be paid out of the pension fund to police officers who have sustained permanent injuries incurred as a result of the performance of duties of police officers for the Township and are disabled to such an extent that they are unable to engage in any substantial, gainful employment as a police officer as determined by a physician designated by the Board of Commissioners.

§ 45-6 Monthly dependency benefits.

[Amended 6-17-1982 by Ord. No. 320; 8-17-1983 by Ord. No. 329; 8-15-1990 by Ord. No. 397; 6-16-1993 by Ord. No. 435; 11-20-1996 by Ord. No. 467; 2-19-2003 by Ord. No. 540]
A. 
Monthly dependency benefits shall be provided to a surviving spouse, and on the spouse's death, in equal shares to children until age 18, or if attending college until age 23, of a police officer who dies after having obtained eligibility to obtain dependency benefits, which shall be construed to mean that such police officer was receiving pension benefits or was eligible for a retirement pension when he died.
[Amended 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
B. 
Benefits payable to a dependent minor child shall continue until age 18, or if attending college until age 23. A child is considered to be attending college if he or she is enrolled at an accredited institution of higher learning and is carrying at least seven credit hours per semester.
C. 
Such dependency benefits shall apply to all officers who die by reason of a nonservice event, subject to the following:
[Amended 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
(1) 
Such benefits shall not be payable until the date on which the officer would have attained the age of retirement called for in § 45-4 and had 25 years of service had he lived and then shall be payable only at 50% of the rates called for under § 45-9 and shall be subject to the income limitations set forth under this section; or in place thereof, to take a full refund of contributions, with interest, computed in accordance with § 45-14, in which case the right to any further benefits is thereby terminated and forfeited.
(2) 
The election provided for above shall be made, in writing, within 30 days of death of the officer.

§ 45-7 Basis for determining retirement benefits.

[Amended 6-17-1982 by Ord. No. 320; 8-17-1983 by Ord. No. 329; 6-16-1993 by Ord. No. 435; 4-18-2001 by Ord. No. 518; 9-18-2002 by Ord. No. 536; 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
A. 
The basis for determining the amount of the full monthly pension benefits to police officers retiring under § 45-4 of this article shall be 1/2 of the average monthly salary during the last 36 months of employment.
B. 
Cost-of-living adjustments shall not be applicable to dependency benefits.
C. 
Cost-of-living allowances ("COLA") shall be included in the Police Pension Plan for officers who retire after reaching 50 years of age and 25 years of service, subject to the following conditions:
(1) 
The cost-of-living adjustment shall be granted each January 1 after one full year of retirement, based on the most recent available twelve-month increase in the Consumer Price Index, Urban Wage Earners.
(2) 
The total cost-of-living increase shall not exceed the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index, Urban Wage Earners, from the year in which the officer last worked.
(3) 
The total cost-of-living increase shall not exceed 30% of the retiree's initial benefit.
(4) 
The total pension benefit, including cost of living, shall not exceed 75% of the officer's final average earnings used for computing retirement benefits.
(5) 
Maintenance of the COLA in the plan shall not impair the actuarial soundness of the plan nor require contributions from the Township as set forth in § 45-7D.
D. 
In the event that the Township's actuary determines that the Township must make financial contributions to the plan, then:
(1) 
For officers who have retired as of the date of the actuary's determination, no further COLA increases shall be granted until they can be provided without Township contributions.
(2) 
Officers who retire after the date of the actuary's determination shall not be entitled to any COLA increase until it can be provided without a need for Township contributions.
(3) 
Officers who retire after the actuary's determination shall have their monthly pension benefit based upon 1/2 of the average monthly salary during the last 36 months of employment without contribution from the Township.
E. 
In the case of a police officer who has completed 26 or more years of total service with the Township, the police officer's full monthly pension benefit as calculated in § 45-7A and payable each month of retirement shall be increased by $100.

§ 45-8 Basis for determining disability benefits.

[Amended 2-19-2003 by Ord. No. 540; 7-8-2014 by Ord. No. 686]
The basis for determining monthly benefits to a police officer retiring under § 45-5 shall be 50% of the officer's salary at the time of disability.

§ 45-9 Basis for determining dependency benefits.

[Amended 6-17-1982 by Ord. No. 320; 6-16-1993 by Ord. No. 435; 2-19-2003 by Ord. No. 540]
Monthly benefits payable to the dependents of police officers shall be the following:
A. 
For those police officers who are killed in the performance of their duties as police officers for the Township, dependency benefits shall be 100% of the annual salary at the time of the officer's death payable upon the death of the officer.
B. 
For those officers who are receiving or are eligible to receive pension benefits at the time of their death, to a surviving spouse who is living, 50% of the benefit to which the police officer would have been entitled, payable at the time the officer would have received them had he lived or was receiving on death, whichever is applicable, following the death of the surviving spouse, then to the child or children under the age of 18 years, or if attending college until age 23, in accordance with provisions of § 45-6B in equal shares.

§ 45-10 Computation of benefits.

[Amended 10-9-1967 by Ord. No. 134; 12-18-1973 by Ord. No. 214]
Such pension benefits for any month as called for under §§ 45-7, 45-8 and 45-9 shall be computed as the sum of:
A. 
Seventy-five percent of the primary benefits under federal social security laws for which the police officer may be eligible because of age as, if and when such benefits become payable to police officers of the Township.
B. 
Any pension benefits from any pension plans heretofore established by a private organization or association for the members of the police force but only to the extent that this commonwealth or any of its municipalities shall have contributed to such pension plan moneys raised by taxation.
C. 
Benefits from Police Pension Funds established by this article up to the extent necessary to bring total benefits in any month up to the amounts called for under §§ 45-7, 45-8 and 45-9.

§ 45-11 Military service to be credited.

Any member of the Township police force who has been in service or who thereafter enters the military service of the United States shall have credited to his employment record for pension benefits all of his time in military service if he returns to his employment within six months after his separation from military service.

§ 45-12 Payments not to be charged to any other funds.

Payments made under the provisions of this article shall not be a charge on any other fund in the treasury of the Township or under its control, save the Municipal Police Pension Fund herein created and provided for.

§ 45-13 Actuary to determine value of liability.

The Township shall employ an actuary at a compensation to be determined from time to time by the Board of Township Commissioners. The actuary shall determine the present value of the liability for pensions payable under §§ 45-7, 45-8 and 45-9 of this article to police officers for service prior to the effective date of this article. The unfunded liability shall be paid by the Township over a period not to exceed 25 years, except that the value of any assets transferred to the fund from previous pension funds heretofore established shall be used toward the payment of such unfunded liability. The actuary shall also determine the amount which shall be contributed annually into the fund for the service of police officers subsequent to the establishment of this Police Pension Fund, such payments to be known as "future service costs."

§ 45-14 Refund of contributions.

[Amended 4-10-1972 by Ord. No. 184; 8-11-1976 by Ord. No. 244]
Any member of the police force who, for any reason, shall be ineligible to receive a pension hereunder after having contributed to the Police Pension Fund created hereby shall be entitled to a refund for all such moneys paid by him into said fund immediately upon discontinuance of his employment with the police force, plus interest on said moneys payable at the rate of 4% per annum compounded annually at the end of each calendar year. If such discontinuance is due to death, the refund shall be paid to his designated beneficiary or to his estate to the extent that it has not been paid to his family under § 45-9 above. The existing private pension fund for the benefit of members of the police force of the Township may be continued; however, no Township fund or funds received from said Treasurer as aforesaid shall be paid to such private fund, and no police officer shall be required to make any contributions toward this fund.

§ 45-15 Pension not transferable.

The pensions herein provided shall not be subject to attachment or any other legal process and shall be payable only to those persons indicated to be eligible for pension payments and shall not be subject to assignment or transfer.

§ 45-16 Payment of expenses.

[Amended 11-10-1969 by Ord. No. 156; 3-18-1987 by Ord. No. 364]
The expenses of administration and management of the fund, including the compensation of the actuary, shall be paid by the plan.
[Adopted 3-12-1962 by Ord. No. 1988; amended in its entirety 3-8-2016 by Ord. No. 713]

§ 45-17 Creation.

The Township of Lower Moreland hereby adopts the ICMA Retirement Corporation Governmental Purchase Plan and Trust, a copy of which is incorporated herein as Exhibit A to this article.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Said exhibit is on file in the Township offices. Former Art. III, Employee Pension Plan and Trust, adopted 7-9-1973 by Ord. No. 202, as amended, which immediately followed this article, was repealed 3-8-2016 by Ord. No. 713.