Township of East Hempfield, PA
Lancaster County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of East Hempfield as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Employee benefits — See Ch. 16.
[Adopted by Res. No. 6-4-1986B; amended in its entirety 4-5-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-01]

§ 37-1 Establishment of plan.

A pension plan is hereby established for the Township's full-time nonuniformed employees pursuant to and in compliance with the Act of May 1, 1933, P.L. 103, No. 69, as amended. Such plan shall be under the direction of the Board of Supervisors of the Township of East Hempfield and shall be administered under such regulations as the Board of Supervisors may prescribe. The effective date of this article, generally, shall be January 1, 2007; however, the plan established hereunder shall be deemed a continuation of the previous nonuniformed pension plan for state aid purposes. In addition, revisions made subsequent to such effective date are separately identified.

§ 37-2 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
The governing body of the Township of East Hempfield acting in the capacity of administrator of the nonuniformed pension plan established pursuant to this article.
COMMITTEE
The persons who may be appointed to serve in an advisory capacity to the Board of Supervisors in the administration of the plan.
CONTRIBUTION
The monies paid by the employer to the plan and/or the payroll deductions made monthly from the salaries of the participants and paid to the plan; except that "contributions" in § 37-4E shall mean total contributions paid by the participant and accumulated during the period of employment and participation in this plan.
EMPLOYER
The Township of East Hempfield.
FUTURE SERVICE LIABILITY
The value of any participant's benefits which shall accrue by virtue of that participant's service rendered subsequent to the enactment of this article.
PARTICIPANT
Every person duly appointed from time to time by the employer as a full-time nonuniformed employee working not less than 37 hours per week at a definite salary, subject to reasonable vacation and sick leave, to be included in the plan upon date of hire.
PLAN
The nonuniformed employees' pension plan established pursuant to this article.
SALARY
The amount of compensation received by a participant in each and every month, including base pay, overtime pay, longevity pay, shift differential, and any other such increments. The term "salary" shall include regular payments made for vacation time, sick time, compensation time, personal days and bereavement leave. For current employees hired before January 1, 2007, the term "salary" shall also include lump-sum payments made for any unused vacation days and/or hours up to a maximum of one year's worth of such time and any unused sick days and/or hours up to a maximum of three years' worth of such time, as paid at the conclusion of employment at the prevailing rate. For employees hired on or after January 1, 2007, the term "salary" shall not include lump-sum payments made for any unused days.
SERVICE
Total aggregate service, not necessarily continuous, with the employer.
TERMINATION
The cessation of service by the participant for any reason, including disability, resignation, and employee termination. Death shall not be considered a termination within the meaning of this article. Voluntary leaves of absence without pay shall not be considered a termination for the purposes of this article, but no period of such leave shall be computed in the total service for pension benefit purposes. Leaves of absence with pay shall not be considered a termination within the meaning of this article (provided that the municipality is able to certify to the Department of the Auditor General that such participant on a leave of absence with pay is within the definition of a participant as set forth herein), but such leaves may be computed in the total service for pension benefit purposes.
UNFUNDED LIABILITY
The present value of any participant's benefits accrued prior to the enactment of this article by virtue of that participant's prior service.

§ 37-3 Administration.

A. 
The Board of Supervisors shall administer the plan by such regulations as shall from time to time be necessary for the effective maintenance of the plan, provided that no regulation shall be contrary to the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and/or applicable federal regulations.
B. 
The Board of Supervisors may appoint a Committee which shall act as an advisory body to the Board of Supervisors in the administration of the plan according to the regulations established pursuant to this article.
C. 
Committee membership.
(1) 
The Committee shall consist of five members, which number shall include the Township Manager and the Township Director of Finance, two Supervisors, and one other active nonmanagerial plan participant chosen by a majority of the current participants in the plan.
(2) 
All such persons so designated shall serve at the pleasure of the Board of Supervisors. Any member may resign upon written notice to the Board of Supervisors and the Committee. Any vacancies in the Committee arising from resignation, death or removal shall be filled by the Board of Supervisors by the procedure set out herein for the member of the Committee whose resignation, death or removal has created the vacancy.
(3) 
The Committee shall meet no less than annually, and members shall serve without compensation for their services.
D. 
The Committee shall act by such procedure as the Committee shall establish, provided that all decisions shall be by majority vote. The Committee may authorize one of its members to execute any document or documents on behalf of the Committee, may adopt bylaws and regulations as it deems necessary for the conduct of its affairs, and may appoint such accountants, counsel, specialists or such other personnel as it may deem desirable for the proper administration of the plan, provided that all such executions of documents, adoptions of bylaws and regulations, and appointments shall be approved by the Board of Supervisors.
E. 
The Committee shall keep a record of all its proceedings and acts which shall relate to the plan and shall keep all such books of accounts, records and other data as shall be necessary for the proper administration of the plan. All actions of the Committee shall be communicated to the Board of Supervisors.
F. 
All such reasonable expenses incurred in the administration of the plan, including, but not limited to, fees for the services of specialists, including actuaries, accountants, consultants and legal counsel, shall be approved by the Board of Supervisors and all may be paid from the plan, provided that no such payment shall be contrary to the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
G. 
No member of the Board of Supervisors or the Committee established pursuant to this article shall incur any liability for any action or failure to act, excepting only liability for its own gross negligence or willful misconduct. The employer shall indemnify each member of the Board of Supervisors and the Committee against any and all claims, loss, damages, expense, and liability arising from any action or failure to act, except for such that is the result of gross negligence or willful misconduct of such member.

§ 37-4 Retirement requirements and benefits.

A. 
Eligibility for normal retirement. A participant in the plan may retire from active employment on the first day of the month following the attainment of age 60, provided that the participant has completed five or more years of service with the employer.
B. 
Normal retirement benefit.
(1) 
A participant whose date of hire occurred before January 1, 2011, and who shall complete the age and service requirements as set forth in this article shall receive a pension for life in the amount equal to 2% for each full year of service times the average monthly salary over the 36 months of employment immediately preceding retirement, excluding periods of worker's compensation, temporary disability or approved FMLA leaves of absence, up to 60 months. The maximum benefit shall be 60% of such participant's average monthly salary so calculated.
(2) 
A participant whose date of hire occurred on or after January 1, 2011, shall have established, by the employer, a cash balance retirement account. The employer shall contribute to such cash balance retirement account, at least annually, an amount equal to 7% of such participant's salary, as such is defined in this chapter. Such participant who shall have completed the age and service requirements as set forth in this article shall receive such cash balance retirement account under one of the benefit alternatives hereinafter set forth:
(a) 
A lump sum equal to the cash balance retirement account value.
(b) 
A single life annuity which is actuarially equivalent in value to the value of the cash balance account at retirement.
(c) 
A joint and 50% survivor annuity which is actuarially equivalent in value to the value of the cash balance account at retirement.
(3) 
Subject further to those limitations imposed by the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, no offset or reduction from the benefit here provided for shall be made for any social security retirement benefits, worker's compensation, or other benefits to which the participant is also entitled.
(4) 
The benefit herein provided shall be payable solely from the assets of the plan.
C. 
Early retirement benefit. There is no early retirement benefit at the present time.
D. 
Vested benefit.
(1) 
A vested deferred monthly benefit shall be provided for any participant whose date of hire occurred before January 1, 2011, and whose termination date occurs prior to the participant's normal retirement date, provided that the participant shall have completed a minimum of five years of service with the employer and shall have notified the employer of such intention to vest within 30 days of the participant's date of termination. This benefit shall be computed in the same manner as set forth in this article. Such vested deferred monthly benefit shall be paid to the participant upon attainment of that participant's normal retirement age as set forth in this article.
(2) 
A graduated vested benefit shall be provided for any participant whose date of hire occurred on or after January 1, 2011, and whose termination date occurs prior to the participant's normal retirement date, provided the participant shall have notified the employer of such intention to vest within 30 days of the participant's date of termination. This benefit shall be a graduated percentage of the value of such participant's cash balance retirement account. The graduated vested percentage for participants is as follows:
Vested Percentage for Participants
Years of Service Completed
(complete years of service)
Percentage Vested
1
20%
2
40%
3
60%
4
80%
5
100%
(3) 
The surviving spouse of a participant who dies before his or her pension has vested shall be entitled to receive repayment of all money which the participant invested in the pension fund, plus interest, or other increases in value of the participant's investment in the pension fund, unless the participant has designated another beneficiary for this purpose.
(4) 
The cash balance retirement account set aside for any participant whose date of hire occurred on or after January 1, 2011, and who has not complete the five years of service set forth above shall forfeit all nonvested funds. Forfeited funds will be returned to East Hempfield Township to be used to defray any current or future required employer contributions to this plan.
(5) 
Should a participant in the cash balance account plan sever employment with the Township, the present value of a participant's vested cash balance account shall be paid to the participant as of the date of his severance from employment for any reason other than death.
E. 
Termination.
(1) 
If for any reason a participant shall terminate service with the employer prior to becoming vested, that participant shall be entitled to a refund of that participant's contributions plus interest at a rate of 6% per annum. Such interest shall be uniform for all participants.
(2) 
If a participant shall subsequently return to service and return to the plan the contributions plus interest which were refunded to the participant upon termination, the participant shall be entitled to credit for the prior years of service to the extent of the return of contributions.
(3) 
Nothing in this article shall be construed to allow credit for service not actually given to the employer, except as specifically provided for in § 37-6.
F. 
Survivor benefit.
(1) 
As to those participants whose date of hire occurred before January 1, 2011, the following survivor benefits apply:
(a) 
In the event of the death of a participant who was vested but not yet receiving a retirement pension, or who had qualified for a normal retirement pension but had not yet retired, that participant's spouse, so long as the spouse does not remarry, shall be entitled to receive a monthly pension equal to 50% of the pension the participant was entitled to or would have been receiving had the participant been retired at the time of the participant's death.
(b) 
If no spouse survives, or if a spouse survives and subsequently dies or remarries, then the child or children under the age of 18 years of the deceased eligible participant shall be entitled to receive a monthly pension equal to 50% of the pension to which the participant was entitled.
(2) 
For those participants whose date of hire occurred on or after January 1, 2011, the following survivor benefits apply:
(a) 
In the event of the death of a participant who was vested but not yet receiving a retirement pension, or who had qualified for a normal retirement pension but had not yet retired, that participant's spouse shall be entitled to receive the value of the cash balance retirement account of the participant by filing an appropriate written request with the employer.
(b) 
In the event of the death of a participant who was vested but not yet receiving a retirement pension, or who had qualified for a normal retirement pension but had not yet retired and who is not survived by a spouse, the value of such participant's cash balance retirement account shall be distributed in accordance with the most recent beneficiary designation form on file with the employer, and if none then unto his or her estate.
G. 
Nonalienation of benefits and vesting.
(1) 
No benefit under the plan shall be subject in any manner to anticipation, alienation, sale, transfer, assignment, pledge, encumbrance or charge, nor shall any such benefits be in any manner liable for or subject to garnishment, attachment, execution, levy or other legal process.
(2) 
Further, all benefits granted herein shall vest in the participant upon completion of the requirements for eligibility, and that participant's benefits shall continue in the amount and in the form in which that participant first became entitled to them.

§ 37-5 Contributions.

A. 
Contributions of the employer. Contributions to the plan by the employer shall be in an amount determined by the annual minimum municipal obligation (MMO) calculation, prepared in accordance with Act 205 of 1984, which is certified to the governing body of the Township by September 30 and included in the Township budget for the following year.
B. 
Contributions of participants. The contribution requirements and rights and responsibilities of participants are established from time to time by ordinance or resolution. Participants hired on or after January 1, 2011, are currently neither required nor permitted to contribute to the plan. Any future changes in the contribution requirement for either group of participants may be enacted by an ordinance or resolution.
C. 
Allocation of commonwealth funds. Any payments made by the State Treasurer to the employer from the monies received from the taxes paid on the premiums of foreign casualty insurance companies for purposes of retirement or disability benefit pensions for municipal employees shall be used as follows:
(1) 
To reduce the unfunded liability; or
(2) 
After such liability is funded, to apply against the annual obligation of the employer for future service cost; or
(3) 
To the extent that the payments may be in excess of such obligations, to reduce or eliminate the contributions paid by the participants.
D. 
Allocation of assets of existing pension plans. Any assets of any existing pension plans for the full-time nonuniformed employees of the Township are hereby transferred to the plan established pursuant to this article and shall be applied against the unfunded liability.
E. 
Gifts, bequests and grants. All other monies and property received by the plan, including gifts, bequests, devices and grants shall be applied equally against the participant's and the employer's portions of the future service cost unless otherwise specifically provided.

§ 37-6 Credit for military service.

Any participant in the plan with at least six months of service with the employer who thereafter shall enter the military service of the United States of America shall have credited to the participant's employment record for pension benefit purposes all of the time spent by the participant in such military service, provided that the participant returns to service with the employer within six months after said participant's separation from such military service.

§ 37-7 Termination of plan.

Upon termination of the plan, the assets shall be distributed as follows:
A. 
Sufficient funds shall be maintained to provide the pension benefits prescribed in § 37-4 for all participants who have retired prior to the termination of the plan or who are eligible to retire at the time of the termination of the plan.
B. 
Sufficient funds shall be maintained to provide vested pension benefits prescribed in § 37-4 for all participants who are eligible for such benefits.
C. 
Any funds representing contributions from the remaining participants shall be returned to such participants with interest at a rate of 6% per annum.
D. 
Of the remaining funds, those which can be identified as contributions of the employer, or contributions other than those identified as unused commonwealth allocations, shall be distributed as the Board of Supervisors sees fit, provided that such distribution is made on a uniform basis.
E. 
All funds in excess of the funds described in Subsections A, B, C and D above shall be returned to the commonwealth as unused funds pursuant to the Act of May 12, 1943, P.L. 259, No. 120, as amended, 72 P.S. 2263.1 et seq.

§ 37-8 Participant's rights; municipality's right to terminate.

A. 
Neither the establishment of the plan hereby created, nor any modification thereof, nor the creation of any fund or account, nor the payment of any benefits, shall be construed as giving to any participant or other person any legal or equitable right against the employer, or any officer or employee thereof, or the Board of Supervisors, except as herein provided.
B. 
Under no circumstances shall the plan hereby created constitute a contract for continuing employment for any participant or in any manner obligate the employer to continue or to discontinue the services of an employee.
C. 
This plan has been established and shall be maintained by the employer in accordance with the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The plan shall continue for such period as may be required by such laws, provided that the employer may, by its own action, discontinue this plan should such laws provide, and the employer reserves the right to take such action in its sole and absolute discretion. Upon termination, the employer shall have no liability hereunder other than that imposed by law.

§ 37-9 Investments.

All investments by the Board of Supervisors of the assets of this plan shall comply with any applicable state statutes, rules and regulations with respect to municipal investments for nonuniformed pension funds and with such regulations as the Board of Supervisors shall establish for the purpose of investing such funds.

§ 37-10 Amendment of plan.

The Board of Supervisors reserves the right to amend, at any time, in whole or in part, any or all of the provisions of the plan, provided that no such amendment shall authorize or permit any part of the plan to be used or diverted to purposes other than for the exclusive benefit of the participants, their beneficiaries, or their estates, nor shall any amendment divest a participant of benefits vested by the provisions of § 37-4. All such amendments shall comply with the applicable statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

§ 37-11 Construction of plan.

A. 
This plan shall be constructed according to the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and all provisions hereof shall be administered according to the laws of such commonwealth.
B. 
Wherever any words are used herein in the masculine gender, they shall be construed as though they were also used in the feminine gender in all cases where they would so apply; and wherever any words used herein are in the singular form, they shall be construed as though they were also used in the plural form in all cases where they would so apply.
C. 
Headings of sections and paragraphs of this instrument are inserted for convenience of reference. They constitute no part of this plan and are not to be considered in the construction thereof.
D. 
This article, except as it revises the existing nonuniformed employees' pension plan, is intended as a continuation of that plan.
E. 
This article is effective five days after adoption but shall have retroactive application to January 1, 2017.
[Adopted 7-16-2003 by Ord. No. 03-04]

§ 37-12 Establishment of plan.

A pension plan is hereby established for the full-time police officers pursuant to and in compliance with the Act of May 29, 1956, P.L. (1955) 1804, No. 600, as amended. Such plan shall be under the direction of the Board of Supervisors of the Township of East Hempfield and shall be applied under such regulations as the Board of Supervisors may prescribe. The effective date of this article shall be January 1, 2003; however, the plan established hereunder shall be deemed a continuation of the previous police pension plan for state aid purposes.

§ 37-13 Definitions of terms.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
The governing body of the Township of East Hempfield acting in the capacity of administrator of the police pension plan established pursuant to this article.
COMMITTEE
The persons which may be appointed to serve in an advisory capacity to the Board of Supervisors in the administration of the plan.
CONTRIBUTION
The monies paid by the employer to the plan and/or the payroll deductions made monthly from the salaries of the participants and paid to the plan, except that "contributions" in § 37-15G shall mean total contributions paid by the participant and accumulated during the period of employment and participation in this plan.
EMPLOYER
The Township of East Hempfield.
FUTURE SERVICE LIABILITY
The value of any participant's benefits which shall accrue by virtue of that participant's service rendered subsequent to the enactment of this article.
PARTICIPANT
Every person duly appointed from time to time by the employer as a full-time police officer working not less than 40 hours per week at a definite salary, subject to reasonable vacation and sick leave, to be included in the plan upon date of hire.
PLAN
The police pension plan established pursuant to this article.
SALARY
The amount of compensation received by a participant in each and every month, including base pay, overtime pay, longevity pay, shift differential and any other such increments. The term "salary" shall include regular payments made for vacation time, sick time, compensation time, personal days and bereavement leave, but shall not include lump-sum payments for any unused days for any of the foregoing listed benefits.
SERVICE
Total aggregate service, not necessarily continuous, with the employer.
TERMINATION
The cessation of service by the participant for any reason including disability, resignation and employee termination. Death shall not be considered a termination within the meaning of this article. Voluntary leaves of absence without pay shall not be considered a termination for the purposes of this article, but no period of such leave shall be computed in the total service for pension benefit purposes. Leaves of absence with pay shall not be considered a termination within the meaning of this article (provided that the Township is able to certify to the Department of the Auditor General that such participant on a leave of absence with pay is within the definition of a participant as set forth herein), but such leaves may be computed in the total service for pension benefit purposes.
UNFUNDED LIABILITY
The present value of any participant's benefits accrued prior to the enactment of this article by virtue of that participant's prior service.

§ 37-14 Administration.

A. 
The Board of Supervisors shall administer the plan by such regulations as shall from time to time be necessary for the effective maintenance of the plan, provided that no regulation shall be contrary to the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and/or applicable federal regulations.
B. 
The Board of Supervisors may appoint a Committee which shall act as an advisory body to the Board of Supervisors in the administration of the plan according to the regulations established pursuant to this section.
C. 
The Committee shall consist of five members, which number shall include the Township Manager and the Township Director of Finance, and two members chosen by a majority of the current participants in the plan. The final member of the Committee shall be neither a member of the Board of Supervisors nor a participant in the plan but shall be a citizen-at-large and shall be appointed by the Board of Supervisors. The citizen-at-large shall serve at the pleasure of the Board of Supervisors. The citizen-at-large may resign upon written notice to the Board of Supervisors and the Committee. The Committee shall meet no less than annually, and members shall serve without compensation for their services.
[Amended 12-18-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-06[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also provided that it take effect 1-1-2014 and that, except for this amendment, it is intended as a continuation of the plan.
D. 
The Committee shall act by such procedure as the Committee shall establish, provided that all decisions shall be by majority vote. The Committee may authorize one of its members to execute any document or documents on behalf of the Committee, may adopt bylaws and regulations as it deems necessary for the conduct of its affairs, and may appoint such accountants, counsel, specialists or such other personnel as it may deem desirable for the proper administration of the plan, provided that all such executions of documents, adoptions of bylaws and regulations, and appointments shall be approved by the Board of Supervisors.
E. 
The Committee shall keep a record of all its proceedings and acts which shall relate to the plan and shall keep all such books of accounts, records and other data as shall be necessary for the proper administration of the plan. All actions of the Committee shall be communicated to the Board of Supervisors.
F. 
All such reasonable expenses incurred in the administration of the plan, including, but not limited to, fees for the services of specialists including actuaries, accountants, consultants and legal counsel, shall be approved by the Board of Supervisors and all may be paid from the plan, provided that so such payment shall be contrary to the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
G. 
No member of the Board of Supervisors or the Committee established pursuant to this section shall incur any liability for any action or failure to act, excepting only liability for its own gross negligence or willful misconduct. The employer shall indemnify each member of the Board of Supervisors and the Committee against any and all claims, loss, damages, expense and liability arising from any action or failure to act, except for such that is the result of gross negligence or willful misconduct of such member.

§ 37-15 Retirement requirements and benefits.

A. 
Eligibility for normal retirement.
(1) 
A participant in the plan may retire from active employment on the first day of the month following the attainment of age 50, provided that the participant has completed 25 or more years of service with the employer.
(2) 
A participant shall retire on the first day of the month following attainment of 70.
B. 
Normal retirement benefit. A participant who shall complete the age and service requirements as set forth in this section shall receive a pension for life in the amount equal to 1/2 or 50% of the participant's average monthly salary over the participant's last 36 months of employment or that percentage and based on that number of months as shall be prescribed by statute of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania subsequent to the adoption of this article. Subject further to those limitations imposed by the statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, no offset or reduction from the benefit here provided for shall be made for any social security retirement benefits, worker's compensation, or other benefits to which the participant is also entitled. The benefit herein provided shall be payable solely from the assets of the plan.
C. 
Early retirement benefit. The plan does not provide an early retirement benefit.
D. 
Length-of-service increment benefit.
[Amended 5-6-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-03[1]]
(1) 
A length-of-service increment will be provided to each retired officer for each completed year of service in excess of 25 years. The service increments shall be as set forth under Act 89 of 2005, an amendment to Act 600, and shall be as follows:
(a) 
For 26 years of completed service, the officer receives $100 a month.
(b) 
For 27 years of completed service, the officer receives $200 a month.
(c) 
For 28 years of completed service, the officer receives $300 a month.
(d) 
For 29 years of completed service, the officer receives $400 a month.
(e) 
For 30 years of completed service, the officer receives $500 a month.
(2) 
The maximum length-of-service increment benefit shall be $500 a month after five completed years of service in excess of 25 years. Such length-of-service increment will be paid in addition to other monthly pension or retirement allowances
[1]
Editor's Note: The provisions of this ordinance shall retroactively apply as of 7-16-2008.
E. 
Disability benefit.
(1) 
In the event of the participant's total and permanent disability resulting from service-related injuries, such participant may become eligible for a monthly disability pension. Such disability pension shall commence when the participant has been declared totally and permanently disabled. A participant shall not be entitled to any disability benefit from this plan for a disability resulting from an injury deemed to be non-service-related.
(2) 
"Total and permanent disability" shall mean a physical or mental condition of a participant which qualifies the participant for disability benefits under the federal social security and/or worker's compensation programs. The Board of Supervisors shall designate a physician to represent and certify to the Board of Supervisors such disability as total, permanent and service-related.
(3) 
Any member of the police force who suffers a permanent injury incurred in service shall receive a pension calculated at a rate of no less than 50% of the member's salary at the time the disability was incurred, provided that any member who receives benefits for the same injuries under the Social Security Act (49 Stat. 620, 42 U.S.C. § 301 et seq.) shall have his or her disability benefit offset or reduced by the amount of such benefit.
F. 
Vested benefit.
(1) 
A vested deferred monthly benefit shall be provided for any participant whose termination date occurs prior to the participant's normal retirement date; provided that the participant shall have completed a minimum of 12 years of service with the employer and shall have notified the employer in writing of such intention to vest within 90 days of the participant's date of termination. The amount of the vested deferred monthly benefit shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of Act 600, 53 P.S. § 771.
(2) 
Such vested deferred monthly benefit shall be paid to the participant upon attainment of that participant's normal retirement age as set forth in this section.
(3) 
The surviving spouse of a member of the police force who dies before his or her 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 of the police force shall be entitled to receive repayment of all money which the member invested in the pension fund plus interest or other increases in value of the member's investment in the pension fund, unless the member has designated another beneficiary for this purpose.
G. 
Termination.
(1) 
If for any reason a participant shall terminate service with the employer prior to becoming vested, that participant shall be entitled to a refund of that participant's contributions plus interest at a rate of 6% per annum. Such interest shall be uniform for all participants.
(2) 
If a participant shall subsequently return to service and return to the plan the contributions plus interest which were refunded to the participant upon termination, the participant shall be entitled to credit for the prior years of service to the extent of the return of contributions.
(3) 
Nothing in this section shall be construed to allow credit for service not actually given to the employer, except as specifically provided for in § 37-17.
H. 
(Reserved)[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection H, Killed in service benefit, was repealed 4-21-2010 by Ord. No. 2010-04.
I. 
Surviving spouse's and children's benefit.
[Amended 6-16-2010 by Ord. No. 2010-06]
(1) 
The surviving spouse of a member of the police force or a member who retires on pension who dies, or if no spouse survives or if he or she survives and subsequently dies, then the child or children under the age of 18 years or, if attending college, under or attaining the age of 23 years, of a member of the police force or a member who retires on pension who dies, shall, during his or her lifetime, in the case of a surviving spouse, or until reaching the age of 18 years or, if attending college, under or attaining the age of 23 years, in the case of a child or children, be entitled to receive a pension calculated at no less than 50% of the pension the member was receiving or would have been receiving had he or she been retired at the time of death.
(2) 
Insofar as the amendments of Act 30 of 2002 affect the benefits available to surviving spouses, the amendments shall apply to surviving spouses whose spouse died on or before April 17, 2002, and who were not remarried as of that date.
J. 
Nonalienation of benefits and vesting.
(1) 
No benefit under the plan shall be subject in any manner to anticipation, alienation, sale, transfer, assignment, pledge, encumbrance or charge. Nor shall any such benefits be in any manner liable for or subject to garnishment, attachment, execution, levy or other legal process.
(2) 
Further, all benefits granted herein shall vest in the participant upon completion of the requirements for eligibility, and that participant's benefits shall continue in the amount and in the form in which that participant first became entitled to them.

§ 37-16 Contributions.

A. 
Contributions of the employer. Contributions to the plan by the employer shall be in an amount determined by the annual minimum municipal obligation (MMO) calculation, prepared in accordance with Act 205 of 1984, which is certified to the governing body of the Township by September 30 and included in the Township budget for the following year.
B. 
Contributions of participants.
(1) 
Where positions covered by the plan are included in an agreement under the Federal Social Security Act, monthly contributions paid to the plan by the participants shall be at a rate calculated by multiplying the social security offset percentage listed in § 37-15B by 3% and then subtracting the resultant percentage from 5%. Such contributions shall be on that portion of monthly salary for which social security taxes are payable. Contributions to the plan paid by the participants on that portion of monthly salary that exceeds the amount for which social security taxes are paid shall be at the rate of 5%.
(2) 
The governing body of the Township of East Hempfield may, on an annual basis, by ordinance or resolution, reduce or eliminate payments into the fund by members without the necessity of conducting an actuarial study. However, no such reduction or elimination of contributions by the participant shall result in increasing the liability of the employer to the plan.
C. 
Allocation of commonwealth funds. Any payments made by the State Treasurer to the employer from the monies received from the taxes paid on the premiums of foreign casualty insurance companies for purposes of retirement or disability benefit pensions for Township employees shall be used as follows:
(1) 
To reduce the unfunded liability; or
(2) 
After such liability is funded, to apply against the annual obligation of the employer for future service cost; or
(3) 
To the extent that the payments may be in excess of such obligations, to reduce or eliminate the contributions paid by the participants.
D. 
Allocation of assets of existing pension plans. Any assets of any existing pension plans for the police officers of the Township are hereby transferred to the plan established pursuant to this article and shall be applied against the unfunded liability.
E. 
Gifts, bequests and grants. All other monies and property received by the plan, including gifts, bequests, devices and grants, shall be applied equally against the participant's and the employer's portions of the future service cost unless otherwise specifically provided.

§ 37-17 Credit for military service.

A. 
Credit for military service. Any participant in the plan with at least six months of service with the employer who thereafter shall enter the military service of the United Sates of America shall have credited to the participant's employment record for pension benefit purposes all of the time spent by the participant in such military service, provided that the participant returns to service with the employer within six months after said participant's separation from such military service.
B. 
Purchase of nonintervening military service. A service credit shall be provided for each year of military service or fraction thereof, not to exceed five years, to any member of the police force who was not employed by the political subdivision prior to such military service. The amount due for the purchase of credit for military service, other than intervening military service, shall be computed by applying the average normal cost rate for Borough and Township police pension plans, as certified by the Public Employee Retirement Commission, but not to exceed 10%, to the member's average annual rate of compensation over the first three years of municipal service and multiplying the result by the number of years and fractional part of a year of creditable nonintervening military service being purchased together with interest at the rate of 4 3/4% compounded annually from the date of initial entry of municipal service to the date of payment. Any member of the police force shall be eligible to receive service credit for intervening or nonintervening military service as provided herein, provided that the member is not entitled to receive, eligible to receive now or in the future, or is receiving retirement benefits for such service under a retirement system administered and wholly or partially paid for by any other governmental agency with the exception of a member eligible to receive or receiving military retirement pay earned by a combination of active duty and nonactive duty with a reserve or national guard component of the armed forces, which retirement pay is payable only upon the attainment of a specified age and period of service under 10 U.S.C. Ch. 67 (relating to retired pay for nonregular services).

§ 37-18 Termination of the plan.

Upon termination of the plan, the assets shall be distributed as follows:
A. 
Sufficient funds shall be maintained to provide the pension benefits prescribed in § 37-15 for all participants who have retired prior to the termination of the plan, or who are eligible to retire at the time of the termination of the plan.
B. 
Sufficient funds shall be maintained to provide vested pension benefits prescribed in § 37-15 for all participants who are eligible for such benefits.
C. 
Any funds representing contributions from the remaining participants shall be returned to such participants with interest at a rate of 6% per annum.
D. 
Of the remaining funds, those which can be identified as contributions of the employer, or contributions other than those identified as unused commonwealth allocations, shall be distributed as the Board of Supervisors sees fit, provided that such distribution is made on a uniform basis.
E. 
All funds in excess of the funds described in Subsections A, B, C and D above, shall be returned to the commonwealth as unused funds pursuant to the Act of May 12, 1943, P.L. 259, No. 120, as amended, 72 P.S. § 2263.1 et seq.

§ 37-19 Participant's rights and Township's right to terminate.

A. 
Neither the establishment of the plan hereby created, nor any modification thereof, nor the creation of any fund or account, nor the payment of any benefits, shall be construed as giving to any participant or other person any legal or equitable right against the employer, or any officer or employee thereof, or the Board of Supervisors, except as herein provided.
B. 
Under no circumstances shall the plan hereby created constitute a contract for continuing employment for any participant or in any manner obligate the employer to continue or to discontinue the services of an employee.
C. 
This plan has been established and shall be maintained by the employer in accordance with the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The plan shall continue for such period as may be required by such laws, provided that the employer may, by its own action, discontinue this plan should such laws provide, and the employer reserves the right to take such action in its sole and absolute discretion. Upon termination, the employer shall have no liability hereunder other than that imposed by law.

§ 37-20 Investments.

All investments by the Board of Supervisors of the assets of this plan shall comply with any applicable state statutes, rules and regulations with respect to municipal investments for police pension funds and with such regulations as the Board of Supervisors shall establish for the purpose of investing such funds.

§ 37-21 Amendments.

The Board of Supervisors reserves the right to amend, at any time, in whole or in part, any or all of the provisions of the plan, provided that no such amendment shall authorize or permit any part of the plan to be used or diverted to purposes other than for the exclusive benefit of the participants, their beneficiaries, or their estates. Nor shall any amendment divest a participant of benefits vested by the provisions of § 37-15. All such amendments shall comply with the applicable statutes of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

§ 37-22 Construction of plan.

A. 
This plan shall be constructed according to the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and all provisions hereof shall be administered according to the laws of such commonwealth.
B. 
Wherever any words are used herein in the masculine gender, they shall be construed as though they were also used in the feminine gender in all cases where they would so apply, and wherever any words used herein are in the singular form, they shall be construed as though they were also used in the plural form in all cases where they would so apply.
C. 
Headings of sections and subsections of this instrument are inserted for convenience of reference. They constitute no part of this plan and are not to be considered in the construction thereof.