City of Middletown, CT
Middlesex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Amended 8-2-1982; 6-3-1991; 1-3-2000; 2-2-2004 by Ord. No. 01-04; 1-4-2010 by Ord. No. 01-10; 3-7-2011 by Ord. No. 04-11; 2-4-2013 by Ord. No. 03-13; 8-5-2013 by Ord. No. 20-13; 9-6-2016 by Ord. No. 22-16; 7-3-2017 by Ord. No. 10-17]

§ 74-32 Purpose.

A. 
The City of Middletown has established a retirement system for the purpose of providing retirement benefits for its employees. The system, referred to as the "plan," is intended to be a governmental retirement plan, as defined in Section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code ("Code"), and to qualify as a defined benefit retirement plan under Code Section 401(a). It is also intended that, except as otherwise provided by a collective bargaining agreement, all member contributions to the plan be picked up and treated as employer contributions as described in Code Section 414(h).
B. 
The plan is maintained for the exclusive benefit of eligible members and their beneficiaries.

§ 74-33 Plan and its terms.

A. 
The City and the Retirement Board shall abide by the terms of the plan described in § 74-32, which is set forth in the following documents:
(1) 
This article;
(2) 
The designated plan document, which is a separate comprehensive document entitled "Retirement Plan of the City of Middletown," which is maintained in the offices of the City's Director of Finance and Town Clerk ("plan document"), and is incorporated into this article by reference as if fully set forth herein;
(3) 
The City of Middletown Retirement Plan Trust Agreement, dated February 2, 2016.
(4) 
The retirement provisions of any applicable collective bargaining agreements, provided that such collective bargaining agreements shall be considered only with regard to the plan participants covered by those agreements, unless the City has agreed to extend those provisions to other groups of employees; and
(5) 
With regard to nonbargaining employees only, the retirement provisions of the City's personnel policies.
B. 
To the extent the documents described in Subsection A(4) and (5) conflict with the terms of this article or the plan document described in Subsection A(2), the documents described in Subsection A(4) and (5) shall control, provided the effective date of any such document occurs after the effective date of this article.

§ 74-34 Retirement Board establishment and members.

A. 
The plan described in § 74-32 above shall be administered by a Retirement Board consisting of eight members:
(1) 
Two members of the Common Council (with one member from each political party);
(2) 
The City's Director of Finance;
(3) 
Three citizens of the City of Middletown, provided that one such seat shall be held by James M. Reynolds until his resignation, death or expiration of his term without reappointment;
(4) 
One citizen of the City of Middletown who is also a member of the plan; and
(5) 
The Mayor, ex officio.
B. 
In no event shall more than five of the Retirement Board's members belong to any one political party, as determined based upon each member's registered party affiliation, excluding from consideration the City's Director of Finance.
C. 
The members described in Subsection A(1) shall be designated by their respective parties every four years.
D. 
The members described in Subsection A(3) above shall be appointed by the Mayor with the advice and consent of the Common Council, and any vacancies of these seats shall be filled through appointment in the same manner.
E. 
The member described in Subsection A(4) shall be elected by the current plan members and beneficiaries, and any vacancy of this seat shall be filled through a new election. The City and Town Clerk shall conduct this election. The Clerk will cause a letter to be issued to all members of the retirement system who are citizens of the City of Middletown, eliciting interest in serving as a Board member. From the list of interested members, a paper ballot will be prepared and issued to all members of the retirement system at least 15 days before the actual election is to take place. The individual receiving the highest number of votes will be the members' representative to the Retirement Board. In the event of a tie, a run-off election will be held among those receiving the tie number of votes using the same procedure described above. The individual with the highest number of votes in the run-off election will be the members' representative to the Retirement Board.
F. 
Term.
(1) 
The term of each member of the Retirement Board shall be as follows:
(a) 
The term of a member described in Subsection A(1) of this section shall be four years, provided that the member's term shall automatically end on the date on which he or she ceases to be a member of the Common Council;
(b) 
The term of the member described in Subsection A(2) of this section shall be equal to the duration of his or her employment with the City, with such term ending automatically on the date he or she ceases to serve as the City's Director of Finance;
(c) 
The term of the members described in Subsection A(3) and (4) of this section shall be five years, with such term ending automatically on the date on which:
[1] 
He or she ceases to be a resident of the City of Middletown; or
[2] 
In the case of the member described in Subsection A(4), the date he or she is no longer entitled to a benefit from the plan; and
(d) 
The term of the member described in Subsection A(5) of this section shall be equal to the duration of his or her term of office, provided that the member's term as a member of the Retirement Board shall automatically end on the date on which he or she ceases to be Mayor, either through resignation or conclusion of his or her term.
(2) 
A member described in Subsection A(3) may, at the discretion of the Mayor with the advice and consent of the Common Council, continue to sit on the Retirement Board during the period between the expiration of his or her term and the appointment and/or election of his or her successor.
G. 
The members of the Retirement Board shall serve without compensation, except that the City's Director of Finance and the Mayor shall be entitled to the compensation associated with their positions as employees of the City.

§ 74-35 Retirement Board duties.

A. 
The Retirement Board shall be the trustee and fiduciary of the plan. The Retirement Board shall be responsible for making determinations regarding the payment of benefits from the plan, including, but not limited to, determinations as to members' eligibility to participate, eligibility for a benefit, and the amount of any benefit payable, as well as the eligibility of any other party, including, but not limited to, a beneficiary, spouse, child or alternate payee, to receive a benefit from the plan. The Retirement Board shall have the discretion to interpret the terms of the plan and its governing documents, and its decisions regarding plan benefits shall be final, and it shall be empowered to do all things necessary and proper toward carrying out the purposes for which the plan is created.
B. 
The plan may be amended by the City, by action of the Common Council at any time for any reason. With the exception of the appendices to the plan document which, if appropriate, must be revised by the Common Council either at the same time or after its approval of any collective bargaining tentative agreement or revision to the personnel rules, prior to the adoption of any amendment to the plan, such amendment shall be provided to the Retirement Board for review. However, no such amendment shall authorize or permit any part of the trust to be used for or diverted to purposes other than for the exclusive benefit of the members or their beneficiaries; no such amendment shall cause any reduction in the accrued benefit of any member, or cause or permit any portion of the trust to revert to or become the property of the City; and no such amendment which affects the rights, duties or responsibilities of the trustee may be made without the trustee's written consent. Any such amendment which affects the rights, duties or responsibilities of the trustee shall only become effective upon delivery of a written instrument, executed by the City, to the trustee and the endorsement of the trustee of his or her written consent thereto, if such consent is required.
C. 
The Retirement Board shall have the authority to delegate some or all of its responsibilities to other parties, including, but not limited to, institutional trustees, investment advisors, investment managers and third-party administrators. The Retirement Board shall employ such actuarial, medical, clerical, legal and other services as may be necessary for the proper operation of the retirement system.
D. 
The Retirement Board shall make bylaws and regulations regarding the plan's funding, administration and operation, provided that such bylaws and regulations shall not be inconsistent with law, federal or state, as amended, or the City Charter and this article.
E. 
The Retirement Board shall submit annually to the Common Council a schedule of its estimated expenses necessary for the administration of the plan, and all such expenses of administration approved by the Common Council shall be paid by the City.
F. 
The Retirement Board shall be the trustee of the fund created to hold the plan's assets and shall have full control and management thereof, with power to invest and reinvest such assets in securities and all other forms of investment permitted for a governmental plan trust under the laws of the State of Connecticut.
G. 
The Retirement Board shall also be the trustee of the retiree benefits trust agreement for certain post-employment benefits provided for in collective bargaining agreements with the City's employee unions, including retiree medical benefits (collectively "OPEB benefits") and shall have the same investment rights with regard to such assets as described in Subsection E.

§ 74-36 Funding of plan.

A. 
The plan is funded with a single trust, under which there is separate accounting for the three covered groups of members — police department employees, fire department employees and general government employees, including employees of the Russell Library Company, Inc. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the assets of the trust shall be available to make benefit payments to all members, regardless of whether the member is or was a general government, police department or fire department employee.
B. 
The benefits provided under the plan shall be funded by both member and City contributions.
(1) 
Member contributions shall be deposited in the trust as soon as administratively practical following the date they are withheld from pay.
(2) 
The City must pay annually to the plan such amount, as determined by the Retirement Board based on sound actuarial principles, as necessary, in addition to contributions of the members, to provide future pensions and other benefits under the plan on account of service rendered by members subsequent to the date upon which each shall begin participation in the plan.
C. 
No part of the trust's assets may be used for or diverted to anyone other than plan members or their beneficiaries before the satisfaction of all trust liabilities.
D. 
The assets of the trust shall be invested in accordance with the laws of the State of Connecticut.
E. 
The Retirement Board shall, on or before December 1 of each year, file with the Common Council an annual report showing the financial condition of the retirement system as of the end of the last completed fiscal year, including an actuarial valuation of assets and liabilities, and setting forth such other facts, recommendations and data as may be of value to the members of the retirement system and the City.
F. 
Under no circumstances shall the assets of the trust be used for or diverted to anyone other than members entitled to benefits or their beneficiaries before the date on which all current and future liabilities of the trust have been satisfied.

§ 74-37 Effect of amendment.

This Chapter 74, Article IV, shall be effective upon approval by the Common Council; provided, however, that any changes shall not apply to members or beneficiaries in pay status prior to that date.

§ 74-38 through § 74-51. (Reserved)