City of Erie, PA
Erie County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011; Ord. 24-2016, passed 8-3-2016]
The following words and phrases as used in this Plan shall have the meaning set below unless a different meaning is clearly required by the context:
(a) 
ACCRUED RETIREMENT BENEFIT — The amount of retirement benefit credited to the Participant as of any date pursuant to Section 149.04(a) calculated on the basis of the Participant's Final Pay determined as of such date and multiplied by a fraction not to exceed 1.0, the numerator of which shall be the Participant's completed years of Service as of such date and the denominator of which shall be the number of years of Service which the Participant would complete as of his Normal Retirement Date under the Plan, assuming no interruption of Service to his Normal Retirement Date.
(b) 
ACT 205 — The Municipal Pension Plan Funding Standard and Recovery Act, enacted as P.L. 1005 (Act 205 of 1984), 53 P.S. § 895.101 et seq., as amended from time to time.
(c) 
ACTUARIAL EQUIVALENT — A benefit or amount of equivalent actuarial value computed, except as otherwise specified herein, on the basis of the RP-2014 total data set mortality adjusted to 2006 for base rates and projected to the year of the calculation using the MP mortality improvement scale, and interest at 6% per annum.
[Amended by Ord. 79-2019, passed 12-18-2019]
(d) 
ACTUARIALLY SOUND — A Plan that is being funded annually at a level not lower than the financial requirements of the Plan pursuant to Act 205.
(e) 
ACTUARY — The person, partnership, association or corporation that at any given time serves as Actuary to the plan; provided that such Actuary must be an "Approved Actuary" as defined in Act 205.
(f) 
AGE — The age of a Participant calculated as of his/her last birthday.
(g) 
BOARD or BOARD OF MANAGERS — The Board of Managers of the City of Erie Firefighters' Pension Fund, which is in charge of the administration of the Plan. There are nine members of the Board, consisting of the Mayor, the Director of Finance, the Director of Public Safety, the City Controller, the Fire Chief (or the replacement or substitute officer of the City performing substantially the same functions as any of the foregoing listed officers), two members elected by the Employees in the Bureau of Fire, and effective May 1, 2005, two members elected by the dues-paying members of the City of Erie Retired Firefighters Association from among their members who are currently receiving monthly pension payments from the Pension Fund ("Retirees"). The two members elected by the active Employees shall serve for a term of four years, with the term of one to expire two years after the term of the other. One of these Employee-elected members shall serve as Secretary and the other shall serve as Treasurer of the Board. There shall be an election every two years to fill the position of the Employee-elected member whose term has expired. In the event of a vacancy among the Employee-elected members of the Board the active Employees shall elect a successor to complete the unexpired term. The two members elected by the Retirees shall serve for four-year terms, except that one of the two members initially elected by the Retirees shall serve for an initial term of six years. There shall be an election every two years to fill the position of the Retiree-elected member whose term has expired. In the event of a vacancy among the Retiree-elected members of the Board the Retirees shall elect a successor to complete the unexpired term.
(h) 
BYLAWS — The bylaws of the Association which shall govern the internal operations of the Association.
(i) 
CITY COUNCIL or COUNCIL — The governing body of the Employer.
(j) 
CODE — The Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended or replaced from time to time.
(k) 
COMPENSATION — A Participant's wages or compensation as reported on IRS Form W-2 each year, including regular pay, shift differential, longevity increments, holiday pay, and contributions to the Plan which are picked up by the City under Code Section 414(h)(2), plus uniform cleaning allowances, whether or not included in W-2 income, but excluding overtime pay, sell back of unused vacation time or unused sick leave pay and "out of rank pay" (pay above regular pay while serving in a temporary position) even though included in W-2 income. Effective January 1, 1998 Compensation also includes elective amounts not included in W-2 income by reason of Code Sections 125, 132(f)(4), 401(k), 402(g)(3), 403(b) or 457(b). Compensation shall include contributions "picked up" under Section 149.02(b).
(l) 
DISABILITY RETIREMENT BENEFIT — Shall have the meaning specified in Sections 149.04(e) and (f).
(m) 
EFFECTIVE DATE — The effective date of this Amendment and Restatement of the Plan is January 1, 2010, except where otherwise specified in this Plan. The Partial Lump-Sum Distribution Option of Section 149.09 was effective February 15, 2004. Section 149.09 was repealed effective December 20, 2006.
(n) 
EMPLOYEE — A sworn firefighter employed in the Employer's Fire Department to suppress fires on a full-time basis, including the Chief, Assistant Chiefs, Fire Inspectors, Emergency Medical Services Coordinator, and the Quartermaster, but excluding support personnel such as dispatchers, mechanics, electricians, clerks and secretaries.
(o) 
EMPLOYER — The City of Erie.
(p) 
FINAL PAY — A Participant's Compensation paid by the City in the form of regular pay, longevity increments, holiday pay, uniform cleaning allowance and contributions to the Plan by the Participant which are "picked up" by the City under Code Section 414(h)(2), but excluding Compensation for overtime, sell back of unused vacation time, sell back of unused sick leave pay, and pay exceeding regular pay while serving in a temporary position ("out of rank pay"), at the greater of: (a) the annual rate in effect at the earlier of the time of the Participant's termination of employment or retirement under the Plan or the Pension Lookback Date which the Participant selects under Section 149.09 hereof, or (b) the highest annual Compensation within the meaning of this Paragraph (p) which the Participant received during any of the five Plan Years of the Participant's Service with the City prior to the Participant's termination of employment or retirement under the Plan or the Pension Lookback Date which the Participant selects under Section 149.09 hereof. Effective as of January 1, 1998 Final Pay includes elective amounts of Compensation not included in income by reason of Code Sections 125, 132(f)(4), 401(k), 402(g)(3), 403(b) or 457(b).
The Final Pay which is taken into account in determining benefit accruals in any Plan Year for each Employee who first became a participant in the Plan on or after January 1, 1989 is subject to the annual limits of Code Section 401(a)(17), which specifies $200,000 for Plan Year 1989, $209,200 for Plan Year 1990, $222,220 for Plan Year 1991, $228,860 for Plan Year 1992, $235,840 for Plan Year 1993, reduced by OBRA-1993 to $150,000 for Plan Years 1994 through 1996, increased to $160,000 for Plan Years 1997 through 1999, increased to $170,000 for Plan Years 2000 and 2001, and increased to $200,000 for the 2002 Plan Year. The $200,000 limit on Compensation included in Final Pay shall be adjusted after the 2002 Plan Year for cost-of-living increases in accordance with Code Section 401(a)(17)(B). Family Aggregation Rules do not apply for Plan Years beginning after December 31, 1996.
Section 149.09 (Partial Lump Sum Distribution Option) has been eliminated in accordance with the repealer passed by City Council on December 20, 2006 at Official Ordinance No. 75-2006.
(q) 
INTERVENING UNIFORMED SERVICE — Honorable active duty service in the Uniformed Services by a Participant for up to five years (subject to extension of such five-year period as permitted by USERRA), whether on a voluntary or involuntary basis, and who returns to the employ of the Employer at the conclusion of such Uniformed Service within the Report-Back Period permitted by USERRA.
(r) 
NORMAL RETIREMENT BENEFIT — Shall have the meaning specified in Section 149.04(a).
(s) 
NORMAL RETIREMENT DATE — The date on which a Participant shall have accrued 20 years of Service on active duty as an Employee with the Employer and who shall have attained the age of 50 years.
(t) 
PARTICIPANT — Any Employee who is contributing to the Pension Fund out of their Compensation the amounts required by Section 149.02(b).
(u) 
PENSION FUND — The assets of this Plan held and administered under the terms of this Plan and Act 205, and which shall include all money, property, investments, policies and contracts that are a part of the Plan, which shall be held in trust by the City according to the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
(v) 
PICK-UP CONTRIBUTIONS — Employee Contributions otherwise due from Participants in the Plan that are made by the City on a pre-federal (but not pre-Pennsylvania) income tax basis pursuant to Subsection 414(h)(2) of the Code commencing January 1, 1994.
(w) 
PLAN — The defined benefit pension plan set forth in this Article 149 (including any trust forming a part hereof), as amended and supplemented from time to time, all of which shall be known as the City of Erie Firefighters' Pension Plan.
(x) 
PLAN ADMINISTRATOR — Shall be the Board which is designated as the Plan Administrator in Section 149.08(a) below.
(y) 
PLAN YEAR — Each twelve-month period beginning on January 1st and ending on the following December 31st.
(z) 
PREPARATION TIME — The reasonable period that the Employee may need after leaving his/her position with the Employer to put his/her affairs in order, or to prepare or travel for duty in one of the Uniformed Services as allowed under USERRA.
(aa) 
PRIOR MILITARY SERVICE — Service on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces completed prior to the Participant's initial employment by the Employer as an Employee, as evidenced by a Department of Defense Form 214 issued to the Participant.
(bb) 
REPAYMENT PERIOD — The period following the re-employment by the Employer of a Participant after Intervening Uniformed Service within which the Participant must repay to the Plan (1) any Employee Contributions which the Participant withdrew from the Plan in connection with such Intervening Uniformed Service, with interest at the annual rate of return on Plan assets which is calculated by the Plan Actuary, compounded annually from the date of withdrawal to the date of repayment, and (2) the amount of any Employee Contributions otherwise due to the Plan during the Participant's Intervening Uniformed Service and related Report-Back Periods (beyond the first 12 months), without interest, provided that the Participant remains employed with the Employer throughout such Repayment Period. This Repayment Period equals three times the period of the Participant's Uniformed Service, but not more than five years.
(cc) 
REPORT-BACK PERIOD — The period allowed under USERRA for a Participant to report back to work or apply for re-employment with the Employer after completion of Intervening Uniformed Service. Depending on the length of the Participant's intervening Uniformed Service, s/he is allowed up to 90 days following completion of intervening Uniformed Service to apply for re-employment or report back to work at the Employer. This Report-Back Period is extended for the period that is necessary (up to two years) for a Participant to recover from an illness or injury incurred in or aggravated during Uniformed Service.
(dd) 
RETIREMENT BENEFIT — The total monthly retirement benefit payable to a Participant under Sections 149.03 and 149.04 below.
(ee) 
RETIREMENT DATE — The first day coincident with or following a Participant's 50th birthday and termination of employment with a Vested Retirement Benefit or a Vested Reduced Retirement Benefit.
(ff) 
SERVICE — The total number of full years during which a Participant was an Employee of the Employer and made the required contributions to the Plan from Compensation paid by the City, or with respect to Prior Military Service or Intervening Uniformed Service which the Participant purchased or was credited under Sections 149.02(c) or (d) below. Service does not include any period for which the Participant's contributions were refunded and not timely repaid to the Fund. Periods of layoff, suspension or leave of absence do not interrupt Service, but are not credited to the accrual of Retirement Benefits payable under the Plan except as provided in the case of purchase of Prior Military Service or Intervening Uniformed Service under Sections 149.02(c) or (d) below. No Participant may purchase Service credit for any period of active Military or Uniformed Service under this Plan with respect to which s/he purchases or has purchased similar credit under any other pension plan of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or its subdivision in which s/he is a Participant.
(gg) 
SERVICE INCREMENT — The component of monthly Retirement Benefit attributable to full years of Service above 20, pursuant to Section 149.04(a)(2) below, not to exceed $500 per month.
(hh) 
SURVIVING SPOUSE — A living individual who was legally married to the Participant and is married to the Participant at the time of the Participant's death.
(ii) 
SURVIVOR — The Participant's surviving spouse. If there is no Surviving Spouse following the death of the Participant, or at the subsequent death of the Surviving Spouse, "Survivor" shall mean the surviving children of the deceased Participant in equal shares so long as they are under the age of 18.
(ii-A) 
TOTAL AND PERMANENT DISABILITY, TOTALLY AND PERMANENTLY DISABLED — A condition as determined by sworn statements of three practicing physicians designated by the Board of Managers that, in their opinion, to a reasonable degree of medical certainty, a Participant is totally and permanently disabled from performing the duties of a firefighter. Any Participant found to have such condition shall be subject to periodic physical examination and review by three practicing physicians at any reasonable time designated by the Board for determination whether his/her total and permanent disability continues. If the three practicing physicians do not confirm by their sworn statements that the Participant continues to be totally and permanently disabled from performing the duties of a firefighter, or if the Participant refuses to submit to such examination, he/she shall cease to be Totally and Permanently Disabled or to have the condition of Total and Permanent Disability.
(jj) 
UNIFORMED SERVICE AND UNIFORMED SERVICES — Active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States (which include the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard and their Reserve components), the Army National Guard and the Air National Guard when engaged in active duty training or full-time National Guard duty, the commissioned corps of the Public Health Service, and any other category of persons designated by the President in time of war or national emergency, or specified in regulations promulgated under USERRA, together with any period for which an Employee is absent from the employ of the Employer for a determination of the Employee's fitness to perform any such duty or for the purpose of performing funeral honors duty as authorized by 10 USCS § 12503 or 32 USCS § 115. Uniformed Service shall also include any related Preparation Time. If an Employee is dismissed or separated from Uniformed Service under other than honorable conditions that related period of Uniformed Service shall not be credited as Service under the Plan.
(kk) 
USERRA — The Uniformed Services and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994, 38 USC §§ 4301 et seq., as amended from time to time.
(ll) 
VESTED BENEFIT and VESTED REDUCED BENEFIT — Participants shall be vested in the Retirement Benefit that they have accrued in the Plan after at least 12 years of Service. Being "vested" means that the Accrued Retirement Benefit to which the Participant is credited as of any date cannot be forfeited unless the Participant dies without a Survivor. In that event any undistributed Employee Contributions shall be refunded to the Participant's Estate, without interest. Periods of layoff, suspension or leave of absence do not interrupt Service, but are not credited to the accrual of Retirement Benefits payable under the Plan, except as required by USERRA.
The Vested Reduced Benefit to which a Participant who has completed the minimum number of years of Service required for vesting is calculated by multiplying the Normal Retirement Benefit to which the Participant would be entitled at age 50 if s/he had completed 20 years of Service (but using the actual Final Pay which the Participant had received to the date his/her employment by the City was terminated) by the fraction determined by dividing the Participant's actual full years of Service by 20. In the event that the City terminates the Plan or discontinues making contributions to it, the Accrued Retirement Benefit of all Participants shall become fully vested, to the extent funded, regardless of the Participant's years of Service.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Contributions by employer. The Employer shall contribute to the Pension Fund for investment at least such amounts each year as are necessary to satisfy the minimum funding standards of Act 205.
(b) 
Participant contributions. Participant contributions to the Pension Fund shall be made as follows:
(1) 
Participants shall contribute monthly an amount equal to: 6% of monthly Compensation, but excluding overtime pay, out of rank pay, sell back of unused vacation time, sell back of unused sick leave pay, plus $1 per month for the Service Increment. The amount required to be contributed for the Service Increment shall be contributed until a Participant terminates employment.
(2) 
No Participant shall have the option of choosing to receive these contributions in cash instead of having them paid by the Employer to the Plan.
(3) 
Commencement of contributions. Contributions shall commence by payroll deductions upon commencement of employment.
(4) 
Termination of contributions. Contributions shall terminate at Retirement, disability, death or termination of employment.
(5) 
Return of contributions. If a Participant terminates Service prior to accruing a Vested Benefit in the Plan, s/he shall be entitled to the return of his/her Contributions, without interest, in accordance with the provisions of Section 149.06(b).
(6) 
Pick-up contributions. Effective January 1, 1994, contributions to the Pension Fund by Participants shall be picked-up by the City under Section 414(h)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions picked-up under this Code Section shall be considered Employee contributions for all other purposes.
(7) 
All Contributions made to the Pension Fund by Participants pursuant to this subsection shall be separately accounted for each Participant.
(8) 
Buyback Contributions for Certain Service Prior to January 1, 1985: Consistent with past practice Participants may purchase their Service for periods of employment as an Employee prior to January 1, 1985 during which they were not permitted to make contributions to the Pension Fund because they were on probation or due to administrative error following completion of probation by making a lump sum payment to the Pension Fund of 5% of the pay which a Class A Firefighter received during such prior period of Service. All Participants having such Service prior to January 1, 1985 must make the required lump sum contribution to the Pension Fund on or before December 31, 2006 to have such prior Service credited under the Plan.
(c) 
Purchase of prior military service.
(1) 
Any Participant who is a contributor to the Plan and who has served in the Armed Forces of the United States subsequent to September 1, 1940, but who was not a Participant in the Plan prior to such Military Service, shall be entitled to purchase Military Service for credit toward the accrual of a full pension under the Plan in accordance with the definition of Normal Retirement Date and the provisions of this subparagraph for each year or fraction thereof, not to exceed five years of such Prior Military Service. Credit for Service under the Plan for Prior Military Service shall be given only upon payment to the Pension Fund by the Participant of an amount equal to (i) that which the Participant would have paid had s/he been a Participant in the Plan during the period of Prior Military Service for which the Participant desires credit for Service under the Plan, and (ii) the contributions which the City would have otherwise paid on account of such Prior Military Service. Participants electing to purchase Service credit for Military Service in the Armed Forces of the United States subsequent to September 1, 1940, shall make such election in writing within six months of employment by the City, and shall pay the total sum to the Pension Fund within 24 months of the date of their election.
(2) 
Effective January 1, 2008, Participants who did not previously purchase their Prior Military Service may at any time prior to their Retirement Date purchase such Prior Military Service for credit as Service under the Plan by payment to the Pension Fund of an amount equal to (i) the amount which the Participant would have paid had s/he been a Participant in the Plan during the period of Prior Military Service for which the Participant desires credit for Service under the Plan, but not to exceed five years, on the basis of the Compensation payable to a Class A firefighter during the period of Prior Military Service purchased, (ii) $1 per month of Prior Military Service purchased, for the Service increment, (iii) the amount which the City would have contributed to the Fund during the period of Prior Military Service purchased by such Participant, and (iv) interest on (i), (ii) and (iii) at the annual rate of return on Plan assets which is calculated by the Actuary for the Plan from the date which is 2 1/2 years after the Participant's initial date of employment as an Employee, compounded annually to the date of payment to the Plan.
(3) 
However, such purchased Prior Military Service shall not be credited towards the accrual of a Normal Retirement Benefit, a Vested Benefit, or a Vested Reduced Benefit until the Participant has accrued at least 12 years of non-Military and non-Uniformed Service.
(d) 
Credit for and purchase of intervening uniformed service.
(1) 
A former Participant who serves more than five years in Uniformed Service (not counting any related Report-Back Period and necessary Preparation Time included in such Uniformed Service) does not have any right to be re-employed by the Employer or to receive Service credit under the Plan for such Uniformed Service. However, the five year service limit is extended under the Final Regulations issued by the Department of Labor under USERRA for additional periods of active duty in the Uniformed Services required by military necessity, national emergency or in support of a critical mission of the Uniformed Service, and not within the control of the former Participant.
(2) 
Upon re-employment by the Employer of a Participant after completing a period of Intervening Uniformed Service following application within the Report-Back Period the Participant has the option (i) to repay any amounts previously withdrawn by the Participant from the Plan in connection with such Uniformed Service, with interest at the annual rate of return on Plan assets which is calculated by the Plan Actuary, compounded annually from the date of withdrawal to the date of repayment, and (ii) to make-up any Employee Contributions that would have been due to the Plan after the first twelve-month of Intervening Uniformed Service and related Report Back Period, without interest. The City shall make all contributions to the Plan necessary for the Participant to receive credit for Service under the Plan with respect to the first 12 months of such intervening Uniformed Service and related Report-Back Period.
(3) 
The Employee's rate of pay and required contribution rate during said Intervening Uniformed Service and Report-Back Periods shall be calculated using the rate of pay that the Employee would have received and the contribution rate that the Employee would have been required to make had s/he not been absent during such intervening Uniformed Service and Report-Back periods, or if not reasonably certain, then it shall be the Employee's average level of Compensation and rate of contribution during the twelve-month or shorter period of employment immediately preceding his/her Intervening Uniformed Service.
(4) 
The Participant has the Repayment Period within which to repay to the Plan any such Employee withdrawals with interest and such Employee make-up Contributions without interest.
(5) 
At the time of, and to the extent of, the Participant's repayment to the Plan of any such Employee withdrawals with interest and of such Employee make-up Contributions without interest, the Employer shall pay the Employer Contributions to the Plan that relate to and are contingent upon the Participant's restoration to the Plan of the Employee Contributions withdrawn in connection with or otherwise due during such Intervening Uniformed Service and Report-Back Periods.
(6) 
However, any Intervening Uniformed Service for which the Participant makes up Employee Contributions within the Repayment Period shall not be credited towards the accrual of a Normal Retirement Benefit, a Vested Benefit, or a Vested Reduced Benefit until the Participant has accrued at least 12 years of non-Military and non-Uniformed Service.
(7) 
To the extent that the preceding conditions are met within the Repayment Period the effect of intervening Uniformed Service and related Report-Back Periods upon the Retirement Benefit of a Participant retiring from the Plan shall be the same as though the Participant had remained continuously employed by the Employer during such Periods.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Normal retirement. Each Participant who retires from the employ of the Employer on the first day of the calendar month coincident with or next following his/her Normal Retirement Age ("Normal Retirement Date") shall be entitled to receive the benefits provided for in Section 149.04(a).
(b) 
Late retirement. A Participant who remains in the employ of the Employer after his/her Normal Retirement Date shall continue to be a Participant in the Plan until his/her actual retirement date ("Late Retirement Date") and shall be entitled to receive the benefit provided for in Section 149.04(c).
(c) 
Disability retirement. As specified in Section 149.04(e) or (f).
(d) 
Vesting. A Participant who terminates employment after at least 12 years of continuous Service excluding Military and Uniformed Service purchased prior to the completion of 12 years of non-Military and non-Uniformed Service, unless otherwise required by applicable law, shall be entitled to the Vested Reduced Benefit set forth in Section 149.04(d).
(e) 
Retirees subject to recall for emergency service. Every retired Participant shall be subject to service, from time to time, as a firefighter's reserve in cases of emergency until unfitted for such service, at which time he/she shall be finally discharged by reason of age and/or disability.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Normal retirement benefit. The amount of monthly retirement benefit to be provided for each Participant who retires on his/her Normal Retirement Date (which benefit is herein called his Normal Retirement Benefit) shall be equal to:
(1) 
50% of 1/12 of the Participant's Final Pay, plus
(2) 
1/40th of the monthly retirement benefit determined by (1) above, multiplied by each full year of Service after 20 years of Service but earned prior to age 65, not to exceed $500 ("Service Increment").
(b) 
Normal form of benefit. The Normal Retirement Benefit payable to a Retired Participant pursuant to Section 149.04(a) shall be a monthly pension commencing on his/her Retirement Date and continuing after his/her death to the Survivor as set forth in Section 149.05.
(c) 
Late retirement benefit. A Participant who remains in the employ of the Employer beyond his/her Normal Retirement Date shall be entitled to receive, commencing on his/her Late Retirement Date, his/her benefit calculated pursuant to Subsection (a) hereof considering his/her Final Pay as of his/her Late Retirement Date.
(d) 
Vested benefit or vested reduced benefit. Where a Participant has completed 12 years or more of Service, excluding Military or Uniformed Service purchased prior to the completion of 12 years of non-Uniformed Service, unless otherwise provided by applicable law, and his/her tenure of office or employment shall be terminated before the expiration of 20 years of Service, or before his/her attainment of age 50, s/he shall, in such event, after attaining the age of 50 years, during the remainder of his/her life, be entitled to receive such portion of the full pension as the period of his/her Service (counting Prior Military Service and Intervening Uniformed Service purchased for credit as Service under Sections 149.02(c) and (d) after completion of 12 years of non-Uniformed Service) to the date of its termination bears to the full twenty-year period of Service for a Normal Retirement Pension. The continuity of 12 years of Service shall not be affected by interruptions of Service for suspension, leave of absence or Intervening Uniformed Service.
(e) 
Disability retirement benefit for disability not in line of duty. A Participant who accrues less than 12 years of Service and who becomes Totally and Permanently Disabled due to injuries or mental incapacities incurred outside of the line of duty and who is unable to perform the duties of a firefighter, shall be entitled to a Disability Retirement Benefit equal to 25%, or if the Participant had completed 12 or more years of Service at the time of Total and Permanent Disability not in the line of duty, then 50%, of his/her Final Pay at the time such disability is incurred, payable at the rate of 1/12 of such amount per month commencing immediately, and thereafter for so long as the Participant remains Totally and Permanently Disabled. If such disabled Participant shall die, the pension payment that s/he was receiving shall continue to be paid to his/her Survivor. Where a Participant who has received benefits under this Subsection dies and there is no Survivor eligible for benefits under this subsection, no further benefits shall be payable from the Pension Fund, except as provided in Section 149.06(d) with respect to any Participant Contributions which remain undistributed.
(f) 
Disability retirement benefit for disability in line of duty. A Disability Retirement Benefit shall be provided for any Participant who incurs Total and Permanent Disability in the line of duty, regardless of the number of years of Service accrued at the time of such disability, which shall be equal to 50% of the Participant's Final Pay at the time such disability is incurred on or prior to December 31, 2005, and which shall be equal to 75% of the Participant's Final Pay at the time such disability is incurred on or after January 1, 2006, in either case payable at the rate of 1/12 of such amount per month from the effective date of Total and Permanent Disability.
Such Participants shall also receive a Service Increment for each full year of Service which the Participant earned over 20, but prior to age 65, calculated at 1/40th of 50% of 1/12th of the Participant's Final Pay at the time s/he incurred such Total and Permanent Disability in the line of duty, not to exceed $500 per month.
The Disability Retirement Benefit payable under this subsection shall be payable to the Participant during his/her lifetime and if s/he shall die, Disability Retirement Benefit that the Participant was receiving shall be continued to be paid to his/her Survivor. Where a Participant who has received benefits under this subsection dies and there is no Survivor eligible for benefits under this subsection, no further benefits shall be payable from the Pension Fund, except as provided in Section 149.06(d) with respect to any Participant Contributions which remain undistributed.
(g) 
Cost of living adjustments. Shall be provided to increase the monthly pension payable pursuant to Sections 149.04(a) (Normal Retirement) or (c) (Late Retirement) of the Plan to Participants who retire on or after January 1, 1998 with at least 20 years of Service, and to their Survivors, if any, so that their pensions shall not fall below 50% of the monthly salary currently being paid to a Class A firefighter of the City. Participants receiving a Vested Reduced Benefit pursuant to Section 149.04(d) hereof, and their Survivors, if any, shall be entitled to a cost of living increase so that their pensions shall not fall below that portion of 50% of the monthly salary of a Class A firefighter as his/her years of Service to date of termination bears to the full 20 years of Service required for a Normal Retirement Benefit.
Participants who qualify for a Disability Retirement Benefit for a Disability Not in Line of Duty under Section 149.04(e) hereof with less than 12 years of Service shall be adjusted for the Cost of Living so that their pensions shall not fall below 25% of the monthly salary currently being paid to a Class A firefighter of the City.
Participants who qualify for a Disability Retirement Benefit for Disability Not In the Line of Duty under Section 149.04(e) hereof with 12 or more years of Service shall be adjusted for the Cost of Living so that their pensions (and the pensions of their Survivors, if any) do not fall below that portion of 50% of the monthly salary currently being paid to a Class A firefighter.
(h) 
Minimum pension. On and after January 1, 1974, persons receiving monthly benefits of any kind from the Pension Fund shall receive a benefit of not less than $200 per month.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Survivor benefit for death when retired or eligible to retire. The Survivor of a Participant who dies while receiving or while eligible to receive a Normal Retirement Benefit under Section 149.04(a), a Late Retirement Benefit under Section 149.04(c) or a Vested Reduced Benefit under Section 149.04(d) shall be entitled during his/her lifetime to receive the Retirement Benefit that the Participant was receiving or would have been receiving had s/he been retired at the time s/he died, commencing at his/her death. With respect to a Participant who dies while entitled to a Vested Reduced Benefit under Section 149.04(d) but before s/he has commenced to receive it, the Retirement Benefit that the Participant had accrued at his/her death shall be paid to his/her Survivor commencing at the date the Participant would have been eligible to receive Retirement Benefits had s/he not died. In case a Survivor is the surviving spouse of more than one deceased Participant the Survivor Benefit payable to that Survivor shall not exceed the highest Retirement Benefit accrued by any deceased Participant to whom the Survivor was married at the time such Participant died.
(b) 
Survivor benefit for death in line of duty after 1967. The Survivor of a Participant who is killed in the line of duty on or after January 1, 1968 shall receive during his/her lifetime the Retirement Benefit which the Participant had accrued at the time of his/her death, payable commencing with the Participant's death, regardless of the number of years of Service which the Participant had completed at his/her death.
(c) 
Survivor benefit for death outside of line of duty. The Survivor of a Participant who is killed or dies outside of the line of duty prior to completion of 12 years of Service shall be entitled to receive a monthly Retirement Benefit commencing with the Participant's death, equal to 25% of 1/12 of the Participant's Final Pay. The Survivor of a Participant who is killed or dies outside of the line of duty following the completion of 12 years of Service shall be entitled to receive a monthly Retirement Benefit equal to the greater of 50% of 1/12 of the Participant's Final Pay or of the Participant's Accrued Retirement Benefit, payable commencing with the Participant's death.
(d) 
Payment of survivor benefit. The survivor benefit paid pursuant to Subsections (a), (b) or (c) hereof shall be paid to the surviving spouse until the date of death of the surviving spouse. Upon the death of surviving spouse of a Participant, the survivor benefit shall be paid monthly in equal shares to the surviving children of the deceased Participant until the earliest of the death or attainment of age 18 of each child. The shares payable to the surviving children shall be adjusted as each child ceases to be eligible to receive a share of the benefit hereunder due to death or attainment of age 18. The payee above whether the spouse or the children, shall be defined herein as the Survivor.
(e) 
Death benefit for participants in plan prior to June 11, 1966. In addition to the Participant Contributions required by Section 149.02(h), a Participant in the Plan prior to June 11, 1966 who contributed $1.40 per month to the Plan and to its predecessor plan, the Erie Fire Department Relief Association, during his/her employment by the Employer out of his/her monthly compensation, and during his/her retirement out of his/her monthly Retirement Benefit, is entitled to a death benefit of $2,000 payable to his/her designated beneficiary, or if no beneficiary is designated, to his/her estate. A Participant in the Plan prior to June 11, 1966 who did not make such additional monthly contributions during his/her employment and throughout his/her retirement, is entitled to a death benefit of $1,000 payable to his/her designated beneficiary, or if no beneficiary is designated, to his/her estate. The last Participant eligible for this death benefit retired from the Plan on July 1, 2004.
(f) 
Distribution on behalf of minor beneficiary. In the event a distribution is to be made to a minor, then the Board shall direct that such distribution be paid to the guardian of the estate of, or if none, to the trustee for, or if none, to a parent of, such minor, or if no parent survives, then to a responsible adult with whom such minor maintains his residence. Payment to such guardian, trustee or parent of a minor, or responsible adult with whom the minor resides, shall fully discharge the Board, Employer and Plan from liability on account thereof.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Forfeitures. Upon the forfeiture of any non-vested portion of a Participant's Accrued Benefit, the amount of such forfeiture shall be credited against the future contributions of the Employer under the Plan.
(b) 
Refund of contributions to terminated non-vested participants. A Participant who terminates employment with the City for causes other than layoff for less than two years, death or disability prior to becoming vested in a Vested Benefit hereunder, shall receive the refund of the total amount of the contributions paid into the Pension Fund by such Participant, including Pick-up Contributions, but without interest.
(c) 
Right of terminated, non-vested participant to return withdrawn contributions upon re-employment. A Participant who receives a refund of the total amount of his/her contributions to the Pension Fund as the result of the termination of his/her employment who subsequently becomes re-employed by the Fire Department and a Participant in the Plan shall be entitled to credit under the Plan for his/her Service prior to his/her termination of employment, provided s/he returns to the Pension Fund the amount of contributions withdrawn from it, with interest at the annual rate of return on Plan assets which is calculated by the Plan Actuary, compounded annually from the date of withdrawal to the date of payment, within two years from the date of his/her reemployment by the Fire Department as a Participant.
(d) 
Refund of participant's undistributed contributions upon death. In the event of the death of a Participant, and in the case of a married Participant, the death of his/her surviving spouse or the death of his/her/their surviving children prior to their attaining age 18, any excess of the total amount of the Participant's contributions to the Plan, including Pick-Up Contributions, without interest, over the total of all benefits distributed from the Plan to the Participant, to his/her surviving spouse and to his/her their surviving children prior to the death of the last survivor, shall be paid to the Participant's designated beneficiary, and if no beneficiary has been designated, to his/her estate, provided, that in case payment of the deceased Participant's retirement benefits is subject to a domestic relations order in favor of a former spouse, no refund of the benefits undistributed from the Plan shall be made to the Participant's designated beneficiary or estate until all obligations of the Plan to the Participant's former spouse under the domestic relations order are satisfied, and the amount of refund owing from the Plan to the Participant's designated beneficiary or estate for undistributed benefits under this paragraph shall be calculated after deducting all payments made from the Plan to the Participant's former spouse under the domestic relations order, as well as the payments made from the Plan to the Participant, his/her surviving spouse and his/her/their surviving children prior to the death of the last survivor.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011; Ord. 37-2016, passed 12-21-2016]
(a) 
Qualification of plan under Internal Revenue Code. In order to be entitled to favorable income tax treatment available under federal law, this Plan is intended to be qualified under the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (the "Code"). In the event of any inconsistency between the provisions of this section and any other provisions of Article 149, this section shall control, and shall apply to all Participants regardless of whether they retired under the Plan or terminated their employment with the City before the Effective Date.
(b) 
Limitations on benefits - Code Section 415.
(1) 
This section 149.07(b) is intended to comply with the limitations of Code Section 415 as interpreted by final regulations issued on April 5, 2007 generally effective for Limitation Years beginning on and after July 1, 2007, and this Section 149.07(b) shall be applied and interpreted accordingly. Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, and in accordance with said final regulations under Code Section 415, the application of this Section 149.07(b) shall not reduce the amount of Accrued Retirement Benefit below the amount of benefit payable or accrued as of the last day of the Limitation Year immediately prior to the effective date of said final regulations for the Plan, as determined under the provisions of the Plan adopted and in effect before April 5, 2007 to the extent the same were in compliance with the requirements of Code Section 415 in effect prior to the effective date of said final regulations for the Plan.
(2) 
The following words and phrases used in this Section 149.07(b) shall have the meaning set forth below unless a different meaning is clearly required by the context:
A. 
Annual Addition means any Employee Contributions, other than Pick-Up Contributions, and other amounts treated as annual additions made to a Defined Contribution Plan under Code Section 415.
B. 
Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer means any entity required to be included with the Employer in a controlled group under Code Section 415(g) and (h).
C. 
Defined Benefit Plan means a plan described in Code Section 414(j) (and qualified under Code Section 401(a)).
D. 
Defined Contribution Plan means a plan described in Code Section 414(i) (and qualified under Code Section 401(a)).
E. 
Limitation Year means the Plan Year.
F. 
Section 415 Compensation means compensation determined as follows:
1. 
Section 415 Compensation means all amounts actually paid or made available to the Employee for services rendered to the Employer or a Code Section 415 Affiliated Company which are wages within the meaning of Code Section 3401(a) and all other payments of compensation for which the Employer is required to furnish a written statement to the Employee under Code Sections 6041(d), 6051(a)(3) and 6052 (for purposes of income tax reporting) determined without regard to any rules under Code Section 3401(a) that limit the remuneration included in wages based on the nature or location of the employment or services performed, plus elective deferrals and similar amounts that would have otherwise been wages and reportable but for Code Sections 125 (including "deemed Section 125 compensation" as provided for and within the meaning of Revenue Ruling 2002 27), 132(f)(4), 402(e)(3), 402(h), 402(k), 403(b), and 457(b).
2. 
Except as otherwise provided herein, Section 415 Compensation shall include only amounts paid or treated as paid under Code Section 415 before a severance of employment with the Employer and Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer.
3. 
An amount paid to an Employee after a severance of employment with the Employer and/or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer that would otherwise be Section 415 compensation and that is paid by the later of 2 1/2 months after the severance from employment or the end of the calendar year that includes the date of severance from employment shall be included in Section 415 compensation if: (1) the amount is regular compensation for services during the Employee's regular working hours, or compensation for services outside of the Employee's regular working hours (such as overtime or shift differential), commissions, bonuses or other similar payments, and the amount would have been paid to the Employee before a severance from employment if the Employee had continued in employment with the Employer and/or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer; (2) the amount is payment for unused accrued bona fide sick, vacation, or other leave, and the employee would have been able to use the leave if the Employee had continued in employment with the Employer and/or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer; or (3) the amount is received pursuant to a nonqualified unfunded deferred compensation plan and would have been paid at the same time if the Employee had continued in employment with the Employer and/or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer, but only to the extent said amount is includible in the Employee's gross income.
4. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Section 415 Compensation taken into account for each Limitation Year shall not exceed $200,000, with said dollar amount proportionately reduced for any Limitation Year shorter than 12 months and adjusted at the same time and in the same manner as provided by Code Section 401(a)(17).
(3) 
The annual amount of Accrued Retirement Benefit payable to a Participant that is attributable to contributions of the Employer shall not exceed $160,000 (and for this purpose, the annual amount of Accrued Retirement Benefit attributable to Employee Contributions shall be determined under Code Section 411(c) to the extent and in the manner required by Code Section 415).
(4) 
The annual amount of Accrued Retirement Benefit payable to a Participant that is attributable to contributions of the Employer shall be deemed not to exceed the general limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) if:
A. 
Such Accrued Retirement Benefit does not exceed $10,000 at any time during the Limitation Year; and
B. 
The Participant has never participated in a Defined Contribution Plan maintained by the Employer or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer (and for this purpose, and as provided for in final regulations under Code Section 415, the Employee Contributions shall not be considered to be a separate Defined Contribution Plan).
(5) 
If a Participant's benefit commencement date is before attainment of age 62, the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) shall be adjusted to an "age 62 dollar limit" equal to the amount of a single life annuity payable as of the benefit commencement date that has the same actuarial equivalent present value of said dollar limitation payable as a deferred single life annuity at age 62, with the actuarial equivalent present value determined on the basis of the applicable mortality table prescribed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under Code Section 415(b)(2)(E)(v) for purposes of the adjustment of the Code Section 415 limitation for defined benefit plans and interest at the rate of 5% per annum; provided however:
A. 
If the Plan has an immediate single life annuity payable both at age 62 and the age at benefit commencement, the "age 62 dollar limit" (if less than the foregoing age 62 dollar limit) shall be equal to the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) multiplied by the ratio of the amount of the immediate single life annuity payable under the Plan to the amount of single life annuity payable under the Plan at age 62, with both said amounts determined without applying the limitations of Code § 415;
B. 
For purposes of determining the age 62 dollar limit, no adjustment shall be made for the probability of the Participant's death after the benefit commencement date and before age 62 to the extent a forfeiture does not occur upon the participant's death before the benefit commencement date;
C. 
The reduction for payment before age 62 shall not apply to any benefit payable on account of the death of a Participant or on account of a Participant becoming disabled by reason of personal injuries or sickness;
D. 
The reduction for payment before age 62 shall not apply to a Participant who has at least 15 years of Service (taken into account for purposes of determining the amount of the Participant's Accrued Retirement Benefit) as a full-time employee of the police department or fire department of the Employer (regardless of job classification during said employment) or as a member of the Armed Forces of the United States; and
E. 
The age 62 dollar limit shall not decrease on account of an increase in age or the performance of additional service.
(6) 
If a Participant's benefit commencement date is before attainment of age 65, the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) shall be adjusted to an "age 65 dollar limit" equal to the amount of single life annuity payable as of the benefit commencement date that has the same actuarial equivalent present value of said dollar limitation payable as a single life annuity at age 65, with the actuarial equivalent present value determined on the basis of the applicable mortality table prescribed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under Code Section 415(b)(2)(E)(v) for purposes of the adjustment of the Code Section 415 limitation for defined benefit plans and interest at the rate of 5% per annum; provided however,
A. 
If the Plan has an immediate single life annuity payable both at the benefit commencement date and at age 65, the "age 65 dollar limit" (if less than the foregoing age 65 dollar limit) shall be equal to the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) multiplied by the ratio of (1) the amount of the immediate single life annuity payable to the Participant, computed disregarding the accruals after age 65, but including any actuarial adjustments, and without applying the limitations of Code Section 415 to (2) the amount of single life annuity that would be payable to an age 65 hypothetical participant with the same accrued benefit (with no increases for commencement after age 65) as the Participant, determined disregarding the accruals after age 65 and without applying the limitations of Code Section 415; and
B. 
For purposes of determining the age 65 dollar limit, no adjustment shall be made for the probability of the Participant's death after age 65 and before the benefit commencement date to the extent a forfeiture does not occur upon the participant's death before the benefit commencement date.
(7) 
If a Participant's Accrued Retirement Benefit is paid in a form other than a single life annuity (as otherwise may be provided for in the Plan), it shall be adjusted as follows to its actuarial equivalent on a single life annuity basis for the purpose of applying the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3), except that no adjustment shall be made for any joint and survivor annuity form of payment (where the spouse is the survivor annuitant) and for the value of any ancillary benefits:
A. 
For payment of Accrued Retirement Benefit in a form not subject to Code Section 417(e)(3) (assuming Code Section 417(e)(3) applies to the Plan to the extent and in the manner required by Code Section 415), the actuarial equivalent single life annuity for this purpose shall be the greater of:
1. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under the single life annuity form of payment of the Plan; and
2. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity if determined on the basis of the applicable mortality table prescribed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under Code Section 415(b)(2)(E)(v) for purposes of the adjustment of the Code Section 415 limitation for defined benefit plans and interest at the rate of 5% per annum.
B. 
For payment of Accrued Retirement Benefit in a form subject to Code Section 417(e)(3) (assuming Code Section 417(e)(3) applies to the Plan to the extent and in the manner required by Code Section 415), the actuarial equivalent single life annuity for this purpose shall be the greatest of:
1. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity that has the same present value as the actual form of payment when determined on the basis of the Plan's Actuarial Equivalent factors;
2. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity that has the same present value as the actual form of payment when determined on the basis of the applicable mortality table prescribed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under Code Section 415(b)(2)(E)(v) for purposes of the adjustment of the Code Section 415 limitation for defined benefit plans and interest at the rate of 5 1/2% per annum; and
3. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity that has the same present value as the actual form of payment (computed by using the applicable mortality table and applicable interest rate), divided by 1.05.
C. 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, for payment of Accrued Retirement Benefit in a form subject to Code Section 417(e)(3) (assuming Code Section 417(e)(3) applies to the Plan to the extent and in the manner required by Code Section 415) with a benefit commencement date falling in the Plan Years beginning in 2004 and 2005 (except as provided in Section 101(d)(3) of the Pension Funding Equity Act of 2004), the actuarial equivalent single life annuity for this purpose shall be the greater of:
1. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity that has the same present value as the actual form of payment when determined on the basis of the Plan's Actuarial Equivalent factors; and
2. 
The amount that would be payable to the Participant as of the same benefit commencement date under a single life annuity that has the same present value as the actual form of payment when determined on the basis of the applicable mortality table prescribed by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue under Code Section 415(b)(2)(E)(v) for purposes of the adjustment of the Code Section 415 limitation for defined benefit plans and interest at the rate of 5 1/2% per annum.
(8) 
If a Participant has less than 10 years of service, the general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) and the special dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(4) shall each be multiplied by the ratio of the Participant's years of service to 10 but not by less than one tenth; provided, however, this adjustment shall not apply to any benefit payable on account of the death of a Participant or on account of a Participant becoming disabled by reason of personal injuries or sickness. For this purpose, a year of service shall be credited for each annual computation period in which the Participant is credited with the service required to accrue a benefit for the period taking into account service with the Employer (or a predecessor employer) and a Code Section 415 Affiliated Company.
(9) 
The general dollar limitation described in Section 149.07(b)(3) shall be adjusted by substituting as of January 1 of each calendar year and effective for the Limitation Year that ends in or with said calendar year, the limitation determined by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue pursuant to Code Section 415(d)(1). Such adjusted limitation shall apply to all Participants. Said adjustment shall be made for purposes of applying the limitations of this section, regardless of whether the Plan actually provides for any cost-of-living adjustments for retirement benefits.
(10) 
If a Participant has multiple "annuity starting dates" within the meaning of Code Section 415, the limitations of this section shall be applied as of each of the annuity starting dates taking into account the benefits that have been or will be provided at all of the annuity starting dates to the extent and in the manner required by Code Section 415.
(11) 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, the Annual Additions allocated to a Participant for any Limitation Year shall not exceed the lesser of:
A. 
$40,000, provided that as of January 1 of each calendar year and effective for the Limitation Year ending in or with said calendar year, the dollar amount as adjusted for cost of living increases by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue pursuant to Code Section 415(d)(1) shall be substituted for this specified dollar amount, and provided further, that said dollar amount for any Limitation Year shorter than 12 months shall be proportionately reduced; and
B. 
100% of the Participant's Section 415 Compensation for the Limitation Year, (whether or not he is a Participant during the entire Limitation Year).
(12) 
For the purpose of applying the limitations of this Section 149.07(b), all Defined Benefit Plans, whether or not terminated, of the Employer and any Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer shall be treated as one Defined Benefit Plan, and all Defined Contribution Plans, whether or not terminated, of the Employer and any Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer shall be treated as one Defined Contribution Plan.
(13) 
If the Employer or any Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer maintains a multi-employer plan as defined in Code Section 414(f) (and qualified under Code § 401(a)), benefits under said multi-employer plan shall be taken into account only to the extent provided by contributions of the Employer or Code Section 415 Affiliated Employer.
(14) 
If this Plan is aggregated with a plan that is subject to the special limitation and/or transitional rules with respect to Code Section 415, satisfaction of the requirements of Code Section 415 shall be determined by reference to the larger of the limitations set forth in this Section 149.07(b) or the limitations applicable to said other plan in the manner provided for in Code Section 415.
(15) 
If the limitations imposed by this Section 149.07(b) and Code Section 415 are exceeded by reason of the aggregation of this Plan with a plan not previously required to be aggregated, said limitations may be exceeded, provided that the requirements of Code Section 415 for doing so are satisfied.
(16) 
If a Participant's Accrued Retirement Benefit must be reduced to satisfy the requirements set forth in this Section 149.07(b) and in Code Section 415, such reduction shall be accomplished first by reducing the Participant's Accrued Retirement Benefit under the Defined Benefit Plan in which the Participant is an active participant and then by reducing the Participant's retirement benefit under the other Defined Benefit Plans in which the Participant was an active participant, starting with the Defined Benefit Plan in which the Participant was last an active participant and moving, successively, and to the extent necessary, to the next preceding Defined Benefit Plan and so forth.
(17) 
If a Participant's Annual Additions must be reduced to satisfy the requirements set forth in this Section 149.07(b) and in Code Section 415, the Annual Addition last allocated shall be reduced. For the purposes of and as required by Section 415, such reduction shall only apply to limitation years beginning before July 1, 2007.
(18) 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, a repayment of a distribution (including interest thereon) shall not be taken into account for purposes of this Section 149.07(b) and the limitations imposed by Code § 415.
(c) 
Required payment provisions - Code Section 401(a)(9).
(1) 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, the payment of benefits under the Plan shall be made in accordance with a reasonable good faith interpretation of Code § 401(a)(9). The provisions in this Section 149.07(c) shall be applicable to the extent a benefit is otherwise payable under the applicable substantive provisions of the Plan, and to the extent applicable, the provisions in this Section 149.07(c) shall supersede any inconsistent benefit payment provisions in the Plan.
(2) 
Payment of benefits to a Participant shall begin no later than the required beginning date of April 1 of the calendar year following the later of (i) the calendar year in which the Participant attains age 70 1/2 or (ii) the calendar year in which the Participant retires from employment by the Employer.
(3) 
A joint and survivor annuity form of payment with a survivor annuitant not the Participant's spouse shall be available to a Participant only if the percentage of the pension payable to the survivor annuitant on or after the Participant's required beginning date and following the Participant's death does not exceed the applicable percentage determined under Treas. Reg. § 1.401(a)(9)-6 in the manner specified thereunder.
(4) 
A certain and life annuity form of payment shall be available to a Participant only if the certain period does not exceed the applicable distribution period under the Uniform Lifetime Table Treas. Reg. § 1.72 9 determined under Treas. Reg. § 1.401(a)(9)-6 in the manner specified thereunder.
(5) 
If a Participant dies before the required beginning date, payment of benefits to a beneficiary:
A. 
If made to a designated beneficiary (within the meaning of Code Section 401(a)(9)) who is the Participant's spouse and the sole designated beneficiary, shall be made or begin no later than the later of December 31 of the calendar year following the calendar year in which the Participant to whom such spouse was married died or December 31 of the calendar year in which such Participant would have attained age 70 1/2;
B. 
If made to a designated beneficiary (within the meaning of Code Section 401(a)(9)) who is not the Participant's spouse, or if the Participant's spouse is not the sole designated beneficiary, shall be made no later than December 31 of the calendar year in which falls the fifth anniversary of the Participant's death, or if paid for the life of, or for a period not exceeding the life expectancy of, the beneficiary, shall begin no later than December 31 of the calendar year following the calendar year in which the Participant died; and
C. 
If there is no designated beneficiary (within the meaning of Code Section 401(a)(9) as of September 30 of the calendar year following the calendar year in which the Participant died), shall be made no later than December 31 of the calendar year in which falls the fifth anniversary of the Participant's death.
(6) 
If the designated beneficiary is the Participant's surviving spouse and is the sole designated beneficiary, and if the spouse dies after the Participant but before payment to the Participant's spouse is required to begin under this Section 149.07(c), this section shall apply to the spouse as if the spouse were a participant without a spouse.
(7) 
If a Participant dies after payment has commenced to him/her under an annuity form of payment, any payments to be made thereafter shall continue in accordance with the requirements of Code Section 401(a)(9).
(d) 
Direct rollovers — Code Section 401(a)(31).
(1) 
A Distributee who is eligible to receive a distribution from the Plan which is an Eligible Rollover Distribution may elect to transfer said distribution to an Eligible Rollover Plan specified by the Distributee in a Direct Rollover.
(2) 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions of this Section 149.07(d) (except as otherwise required by Code Section 401(a)(31)), (i) a Direct Rollover can be elected for part of an Eligible Rollover Distribution only if the amount so elected is at least $500, (ii) only one Eligible Rollover Plan may be designated for a Direct Rollover, (iii) a Direct Rollover election made with respect to one payment in a series of payments shall apply to all subsequent payments until another election is made by the Distributee, and (iv) no Direct Rollover election is required to be provided for an Eligible Rollover Distribution of less than $200 (when aggregated with all other Eligible Rollover Distributions for the taxable year).
(3) 
For purposes of this Section 149.07(d), the following words and phrases shall have the meaning set forth below unless a different meaning is clearly required by the context:
A. 
Direct Rollover means a payment by the Plan to the Eligible Rollover Plan specified by the Distributee.
B. 
Distributee means (i) an employee or former employee and (ii) the employee's or former employee's surviving spouse and the employee's or former employee's spouse or former spouse who is an alternative payee under a qualified domestic relations order, as defined in Code § 414(p), with respect to the interest of the spouse or former spouse.
C. 
Eligible Rollover Plan means an individual retirement account described in Code Section 408(a), an individual retirement annuity described in Code Section 408(b), a Roth IRA described in Code Section 408A (effective January 1, 2008), a qualified trust described in Code Section 401(a), an annuity plan described in Code Section 403(a), an annuity contract described in Code Section 403(b), and an eligible deferred compensation plan described in Code Section 457(b) maintained by a state, political subdivision of a state, or any agency or instrumentality of a state or political subdivision of a state that will separately account for a direct rollover (from this Plan).
D. 
Eligible Rollover Distribution means any distribution of all or any portion of the balance to the credit of the Distributee under the Plan, but excluding (as applicable) (i) any distribution which is one of a series of substantially equal periodic payments (not less frequently than annually) made for the life or life expectancy of the Distributee and the Distributee's designated beneficiary or for a specified period of 10 years or more, (ii) any distribution to the extent such distribution is required under Code Section 401(a)(9), (iii) the portion of any distribution that is not includible in gross income (determined without regard to the exclusion for net unrealized appreciation with respect to employer securities), and (iv) any hardship distribution; provided, however, the portion of a distribution that is not includible in gross income shall not fail to be treated as an Eligible Rollover Distribution merely because that portion is not includible in gross income, but only with respect to (i) prior to January 1, 2007, an Eligible Retirement Plan that is an individual retirement account described in Code Section 408(a), an individual retirement annuity described in Code Section 408(b), or a qualified defined contribution plan described in Code Section 401(a) or Code Section 403(a) that will separately account for such a Direct Rollover and (ii) from and after January 1, 2007, an Eligible Retirement Plan that is an individual retirement account described in Code Section 408(a), an individual retirement annuity described in Code Section 408(b), or a qualified trust, annuity plan or annuity contract described in Code Section 401(a), 403(a) or 403(b) respectively that will separately account for such a Direct Rollover.
(4) 
Effective January 1, 2010, and in conformance with Code Section 402(c)(11), a beneficiary eligible to receive a distribution from the Plan on account of a Participant's death may elect to transfer said distribution in a direct rollover to an individual retirement plan (described in clause (i) or (ii) of Code Section 402(c)(8) and including a Roth IRA) established by the beneficiary for this purpose, provided that (i) the beneficiary is not otherwise a Distributee, (ii) the beneficiary is a designated beneficiary as defined in Code Section 401(a)(9)(E), and (iii) the distribution would otherwise be an Eligible Rollover Distribution but for the requirement that the distribution be made to a Distributee.
(5) 
Said election and Direct Rollover shall be made in accordance with procedures established under the Plan in accordance with Code Section 401(a)(31).
(e) 
Rollovers from other plans. Effective January 1, 2007, the Plan will accept Participant rollover contributions and direct rollovers of eligible rollover distributions from the following types of plans, contracts and accounts for the purpose of purchasing service credit (including military service credit) under this Plan or repaying a cash-out of contributions refunded under this Plan, but only to the extent otherwise permitted under this Plan:
(1) 
A qualified plan described in Code Section 401(a) or 403(a), including employee after-tax contributions.
(2) 
An annuity contract described in Code Section 403(b), excluding employee after-tax contributions.
(3) 
An eligible plan under Code Section 457 which is maintained by a state, political subdivision of a state, or any agency or instrumentality of a state or political subdivision of a state.
(4) 
The portion of a distribution from an individual retirement count or annuity described in Code Sections 408(a) or (b) that is eligible to be rolled over and would otherwise be includible in the Participant's gross income.
(f) 
Death in qualified military service - Code Section 401(a)(37). As and to the extent required by Code Section 401(a)(37), a Participant who dies on or after January 1, 2007 while performing qualified military service (within the meaning of Code Section 414(u)) and who would have been entitled to reemployment rights under the Plan under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 at death shall be treated as follows:
(1) 
Years of Service shall be credited for the period of the Participant's qualified military service to determine whether the Participant is vested in a benefit under the Plan for purposes of the death benefits payable under the Plan; and
(2) 
The Participant shall be treated as if death had occurred while employed by the Employer for purposes of the death benefits payable under this Plan.
(g) 
Credit for qualified military service - Code Section 414(u). Contributions, benefits and service credit with respect to qualified military service shall be provided under the Plan in accordance with Code Section 414(u) and the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 ("USERRA"), 38 U.S.C. Section 4318. Upon a Participant's return to employment by the City following a period of qualified military service, the City shall make the contributions to this Plan with respect to the first 12 months of such qualified service that the Participant would otherwise be required to make pursuant to this Plan, Code Section 414(u) and USERRA in order to be entitled to service credit under this Plan for the first 12 months of such qualified military service. Such Participant shall be required to make contributions to this Plan pursuant to Code Section 414(u), USERRA and 51 Pa.C.S.A. Section 7306 in order to be entitled to service credits under this Plan for qualified military service in excess of 12 months.
(h) 
Domestic relations orders.
(1) 
Notwithstanding any contrary provisions, to the extent permitted by law, all or a part of a Participant's benefits may be assigned and paid to an "alternate payee" to the extent required and in the manner determined by the Plan with respect to a "qualified domestic relations order". For this purpose, an "alternate payee" and "qualified domestic relations order" shall be determined by the Plan Administrator who may use as guidance Code Section 414(p).
(2) 
The Plan may establish such procedures as it deems necessary or desirable to review domestic relations orders and to administer payments under domestic relations orders.
(i) 
Exclusive benefit - Code Section 401(a)(2). All contributions made by the City to the Plan shall be used and applied for the exclusive benefit of Participants and their beneficiaries, and such contributions shall not be used for, nor diverted to, purposes other than for such exclusive benefit of the Participants and their beneficiaries; provided, that, for this purpose, payment of administrative expenses by the Plan to the extent not paid by the City, shall be considered paid for such exclusive benefit.
(j) 
Forfeitures - Code Section 401(a)(8). Forfeitures arising under the Plan because of a severance of Service before a Participant becomes eligible for a retirement allowance, or for any other reason, shall be applied to reduce the cost of the Plan, and not to increase the benefits otherwise payable to Participants.
(k) 
Vesting upon termination - Code Section 401(a)(7) (as in effect September 1, 1974). Upon a complete or partial termination of the Plan, or upon the complete discontinuance of contributions, as and to the extent required by the Code, each affected Participant shall be fully vested in his or her accrued benefit as of the date of such termination, partial termination or discontinuance to the extent then funded. In the event of a complete termination of the Plan, the Plan assets shall be allocated and paid in accordance with applicable law and regulations, and upon satisfaction of all liabilities of the Plan to Participants and their beneficiaries, any residual assets of the Plan shall be returned to the City.
(l) 
Leased employees - Code Section 414(n).
(1) 
A person who is a leased employee shall be treated as in employment with the Employer, but shall not participate in the Plan or accrue any benefits under the Plan except as specifically provided for in the Plan. If a person is eligible for benefits under the Plan as a leased employee, to the extent and in the manner prescribed by Code § 414(n), the benefits provided by the leasing organization to said person shall be taken into account in determining benefits under the Plan.
(2) 
For this purpose, a leased employee means, for Plan Years beginning on and after January 1, 1997, as determined in accordance with Code Section 414(n), any person who is not an employee of the Employer and who, pursuant to an agreement between a leasing organization and the Employer, performs services for the Employer on a substantially full-time basis for a period of at least one year under the primary direction or control of the Employer, but excluding any such person if (i) such person is covered under a money purchase pension plan maintained by the leasing organization that provides for a 10% nonintegrated employer contribution for each of its participants, full and immediate vesting, and immediate participation for each non excluded employee of the leasing organization, and (ii) leased employees (determined without regard to this exclusion) do not constitute more than 20% of the Employer's nonhighly compensated employee workforce.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011]
(a) 
Designation, powers and duties of the plan administrator. The Board of Managers ("Board") of the Pension Fund is hereby designated to be the Administrator of the Plan. The Board shall have primary responsibility to administer the Plan for the exclusive benefit of the Participants and their Survivors, subject to the specific terms of the Plan. The Board shall administer the Plan in accordance with its terms and shall have the power and discretion to construe the terms of the Plan and to determine all questions arising in connection with the administration, interpretation, and application of the Plan. Any such determination by the Board shall be conclusive and binding upon all persons. The Board may establish procedures, correct any defect, supply any information, or reconcile any inconsistency in such manner and to such extent as shall be deemed necessary or advisable to carry out the purposes of the Plan; provided, however, that any procedure, discretionary act, interpretation or construction shall be done in a nondiscriminatory manner based upon uniform principles consistently applied and shall be consistent with the intent that the Plan shall continue to be deemed a qualified plan under the terms of Code Section 401(a), and shall comply with the terms of Act 205 and all regulations issued pursuant thereto. The Board shall have all powers necessary or appropriate to accomplish the Board's duties as Administrator under the Plan. The Board shall be charged with the duties of the general administration of the Plan as set forth under the terms of the Plan, including, but not limited to, the following:
(1) 
The discretion to determine all questions relating to the eligibility of Employees to participate or remain a Participant hereunder and to receive benefits under the Plan;
(2) 
To compute, certify, and direct the custodian or trustee of the Pension Fund with respect to the amount and the kind of benefits to which any Participant shall be entitled hereunder;
(3) 
To authorize and direct the custodian or trustee of the Pension Fund with respect to all discretionary or otherwise directed disbursements from the Pension Fund;
(4) 
To maintain all necessary records for the administration of the Plan;
(5) 
To interpret the provisions of the Plan and to make and publish such rules for regulation of the Plan as are consistent with the terms hereof;
(6) 
To determine the size and type of any contract to be purchased from any insurer and to designate the insurer from which such contract shall be purchased;
(7) 
To compute and certify to the Employer and to the custodian or trustee of the Pension Fund from time to time the sums of money necessary or desirable to be contributed to the Plan;
(8) 
To consult with the Employer and the Aggregate Pension Board (referred to in Subparagraph (j) below) regarding the short and long-term liquidity needs of the Plan in order that the Aggregate Pension Board can exercise any investment discretion in a manner designed to accomplish specific objectives;
(9) 
To determine the validity of, and take appropriate action with respect to, any domestic relations order received by it, whether or not "qualified" within the meaning of the Code; and
(10) 
To assist any Participant regarding the Participant's rights, benefit, or elections available under the Plan.
(b) 
Bylaws, meetings, records and reports. The Board shall adopt Bylaws regulating its organization and operations and shall hold such meetings as the efficient discharge of its duties may require. The Board shall keep a record of all actions taken and shall keep all other books of account, records, policies, and other data that may be necessary for proper administration of the Plan and shall be responsible for supplying all information and reports to the Internal Revenue Service, Participants, Survivors and others as required by law.
(c) 
Appointment of advisors. The Board may appoint counsel, actuaries, accountants, physicians, specialists, advisors, agents (including nonfiduciary agents) and other persons as the Board deems necessary or desirable in connection with the administration of this Plan, including but not limited to agents and advisors to assist with the administration and management of the Plan, and thereby to provide, among such other duties as the Board may appoint, assistance with maintaining Plan records and the providing of investment information to the Investment Managers (defined in Paragraph (g)(12) below) of the Pension Fund.
(d) 
Payment of expenses. All expenses of administration that are approved by the Board may be paid out of the Pension Fund unless paid by the Employer. Such expenses shall include any expenses incident to the functioning of the Board, or any person or persons retained or appointed by the Board incident to the exercise of their duties under the Plan, including, but not limited to, fees of accountants, actuaries, counsel, Investment Managers, and other specialists and their agents, the costs of any bonds required pursuant to law, and other costs of administering the Plan.
(e) 
Claims procedure. Claims for benefits under the Plan may be filed in writing with the Board. Written notice of the disposition of a claim shall be furnished to the claimant within 60 days after the application is filed, or such other period as may be required by applicable law. In the event the claim is denied, the reasons for the denial shall be specifically set forth in the notice in language calculated to be understood by the claimant, pertinent provisions of the Plan shall be cited, and, where appropriate, an explanation as to how the claimant can perfect the claim will be provided. In addition, the claimant shall be furnished with an explanation of the Plan's claims review procedure.
(f) 
Claims review procedure. Any Participant, former Participant or Survivor of either, who has been denied a benefit by a decision of the Board pursuant to Subparagraph (e) hereof shall be entitled to request the Board to give further consideration to a claim by filing with the Board a written request for a hearing. Such request, together with a written statement of the reasons why the Claimant believes the claim should be allowed, shall be filed with the Board no later than 30 days after the receipt of the written notification provided for in Subparagraph (e) hereof. The Board shall then conduct a hearing within the next 30 days, at which Claimant may be represented by an attorney or any other representative of Claimant's choosing and expense. The Claimant shall have an opportunity to submit written and oral evidence and arguments to the Board in support of the claim. At the hearing (or prior thereto upon five business days' written notice to the Board) the Claimant or the Claimant's representative shall have an opportunity to review all documents in the possession of the Board which are pertinent to the claim at issue and its disallowance. Either the Claimant or the Board may cause a court reporter to attend the hearing and record the proceedings. In that event, a complete written transcript of the proceedings shall be furnished to both parties by the court reporter. The full expense of any such court reporter and such transcripts shall be borne by the party causing the reporter to attend the hearing. A final written decision as to the allowance or denial of the claim shall be made by the Board and delivered to the Claimant or the Claimant's counsel personally or by deposit in first class mail within 60 days of receipt of the appeal. Such decision shall be written in a manner calculated to be understood by the Claimant and shall include specific references to the Plan provisions on which the decision is based.
(g) 
Claims appeal procedure. Any Participant, former Participant or Survivor of either, who is aggrieved by a decision of the Board affecting his or her benefit under the Plan may appeal such decision to the Court of Common Pleas of Erie County in accordance with the provisions of the Local Agency Law, 2 Pa.C.S.A. § 752, and the Judicial Code, 42 Pa.C.S.A. §§ 933(a)(2) and 5571(b), or their respective successor provisions and amendments, within the time established by law for filing an appeal from the decision of a local agency.
(h) 
Investment powers and duties of the Board. The Board shall have the following powers, rights and duties with respect to the Pension Fund, subject to Subparagraph (j) below:
(1) 
To retain in cash so much of the Pension Fund as it deems advisable and to deposit any cash so retained in any bank or similar financial institution (including any such institution which may be appointed to serve as trustee hereunder), and shall include the right to hold funds on a temporary basis in accounts or investments that do not bear interest.
(2) 
To invest and reinvest the principal and income of the Pension Fund and keep said Fund invested, without distinction between principal and income, in securities which are at the time legal investments for fiduciaries under the Pennsylvania Fiduciaries Investment Act, or as the same may be subsequently modified or amended.
(3) 
To sell property held in the fund at either public or private sale for cash or on credit at such times as it may deem appropriate; to exchange such property; to grant options for the purchase or exchange thereof.
(4) 
To consent to and participate in any plan or reorganization, consolidation, merger, extension or other similar plan affecting property held in the fund; to consent in any contract, lease, mortgage, purchase, sale or other action by any corporation pursuant to any such plan.
(5) 
To exercise all conversion and subscription rights pertaining to property held in the fund.
(6) 
To exercise all voting rights with respect to property held in the fund and in connection therewith to grant proxies, discretionary or otherwise.
(7) 
To place money at any time in a deposit bank deemed to be appropriate for the purposes of Plan no matter where situated, including in those cases where a bank has been appointed to serve as trustee hereunder, the savings department of its own commercial bank.
(8) 
In addition to the foregoing powers, the Board shall also have all of the powers, rights, and privileges conferred upon trustees by the Pennsylvania Fiduciaries Investment Act, or as the same may be subsequently modified or amended, and the power to do all acts, take all proceedings and execute all rights and privileges, although not specifically mentioned herein, as the Association may deem necessary to administer the Pension Fund.
(9) 
To maintain and invest the assets of this Plan on a collective and commingled basis with the assets of other pension plans maintained by the Employer, provided that the assets of each respective plan shall be accounted for and administered separately.
(10) 
To invest the assets of the Pension Fun in any collective commingled trust fund maintained by a bank or trust company, including any bank or trust company that may act as a trustee hereunder. In this connection, the commingling of the assets of this Plan with assets of other eligible, participating plans through such a medium is hereby specifically authorized. Any assets of the Plan which may be so added to such collective trusts shall be subject to all of the provisions of the applicable declaration of trust, as amended from time to time, which declaration, if required by its terms or by applicable law, is hereby adopted as part of the Plan, to the extent of the participation in such collective or commingled trust fund by the Plan.
(11) 
To make any payment or distribution required or advisable to carry out the provisions of the Plan, provided that if a trustee is appointed by the Association, such trustee shall make such distribution only at the direction of the Association.
(12) 
To retain the services of one or more Investment Managers to manage (with the power to acquire and dispose of) all or any part of the Pension Fund assets, provided that each of such Investment Managers is registered as an investment advisor under the Investment Advisors Act of 1940, is a bank (as defined in that act), or is an insurance company qualified to manage, acquire or dispose of pension trust assets under the laws of more than one state; in such event, the Employer shall follow the directions of such Investment Manager or Managers with respect to the acquisition and disposition of fund assets, but shall not be liable for the acts or omissions of such Investment Manager or Managers with respect to the acquisition and disposition of fund assets, nor shall it be under any obligation to review or otherwise manage any Pension Fund assets which are subject to the management of such Investment Manger or Managers.
(i) 
Gifts, bequests and fees to the Pension Fund. The Board is authorized to:
(1) 
Take and accept by gift, grant or bequest, money and property, real, personal and mixed, for the benefit of the Pension Fund, in trust, to be added to the Fund, subject to such directions as the donors of such money and property may prescribe.
(2) 
Deposit into the Pension Fund all rewards, fees, gifts, testimonials and emoluments that may be presented, paid or given to any member or to the Pension Fund on account of firefighting services, except such as may under the law be payable to the City; all bequests, legacies, gifts or donations made to the Pension Fund or the City in trust, for the benefit of the Fire Department for the period of one year or more, and for which there shall be no lawful claimant, and all income resulting from activities conducted by or under the supervision of the Fire Department, by and with the approval of City Council.
(j) 
Aggregate Pension Board. Effective November 25, 1987, the assets of the Pension Fund were transferred to a trust fund under the control of the Aggregate Pension Board as set forth in Article 173 of the City of Erie Codified Ordinances. The Aggregate Pension Board shall establish investment guidelines and be responsible for the investment of all assets of the Pension Fund. In the event that Article 173 is repealed and the assets of the Pension Fund are no longer under the control of the Aggregate Pension Board, control of the assets of the Pension Fund will revert to the Board which shall have the investment powers and duties set forth in Subparagraph (h) above.
(k) 
Value of the Pension Fund. All determination as to the value of assets of the Pension Fund, and as to the amount of the liabilities thereof, shall be made by the Board or its appointed trustee, whose decisions shall be final. In making any such determination, the Board or trustee shall be entitled to seek and rely upon the opinion of or any information furnished by brokers, appraisers and other experts, and shall also be entitled to rely upon reports as to sales and quotations, both on security exchanges and otherwise as contained in newspapers and in financial publications.
(l) 
Provisions to comply with the Municipal Pension Plan Funding Standard and Recovery Act of 1984. Elsewhere Referred to Herein as Act 205.
(1) 
Actuarial evaluations. The Plan's Actuary shall perform an actuarial valuation at least biennially unless the Employer is applying or has applied for supplemental state assistance pursuant to Section 603 of Act 205, whereupon actuarial valuation reports shall be made annually. Such biennial actuarial valuation report shall be made as of the beginning of each Play Year occurring in an odd-numbered calendar year, beginning with the year 1985. Such actuarial valuation shall be prepared and certified by an Approved Actuary, as such term is defined in Act 205. The expenses attributable to the preparation of any actuarial valuation report or experience investigation required by Act 205 or any other expenses which is permissible under the terms of the act and which are directly associated with administering the plan shall be an allowable administrative expense payable from the assets of the Pension Fund. Such allowable expenses shall include, but not be limited, to the following:
A. 
Investment costs associated with obtaining authorized investments and investment management fees;
B. 
Accounting expenses;
C. 
Premiums for insurance coverage on fund assets;
D. 
Reasonable and necessary counsel fees incurred for advice or to defend the fund; and
E. 
Legitimate travel and education expense for pension plan officials; provided, however, that the municipal officials of the Employer, in their fiduciary role, shall monitor the services provided to the Plan to ensure that the expenses are necessary, reasonable, and benefit the pension plan and, further provided, that the Plan Administrator shall document all such expenses item by item, and where necessary, hour by hour.
(2) 
Act 205 reports. The actuarial reports required by Subparagraph (1)(l) above shall be prepared and filed under the supervision of the Chief Administrative Officer, which shall be the Mayor of the City or his designee. The Chief Administrative Officer shall determine the financial requirements of the plan on the basis of the most recent actuarial report and shall determine the "Minimum Municipal Obligation" (as defined in Act 205) of the Employer with respect to funding the plan for any given Plan Year. The Chief Administrative Officer shall submit the financial requirements of the Plan and the Minimum Municipal Obligation of the Employer to the City Council annually and shall certify the accuracy of such calculations and their conformance with Act 205.
(3) 
Benefit modifications. Prior to the adoption of any benefit plan modification by the Employer, the Chief Administrative Officer of the Plan shall provide to the City Council a cost estimate of the proposed benefit plan modification. Such estimate shall be prepared by an approved Actuary, which estimate shall disclose to the City Council the impact of the proposed benefit plan modification on the future financial requirements of the Plan and the future Minimum Municipal Obligation of the Employer with respect to the Plan.
[Ord. 3-2012, passed 2-1-2012]
(a) 
Effective as of February 15, 2004, every full-time active firefighter who is a participant in the Plan who shall have accrued at least 21 years of service on active duty as a participant and who shall have attained the age of 51 years or more, and who is otherwise eligible for the Normal Retirement benefit provided under Section 149.04 hereof, may elect the Partial Lump Sum Distribution Option ("PLSDO") provided by Subparagraph (c) below in lieu of any other benefits under the Plan.
(b) 
A Participant may elect the PLSDO at any time after six months following attainment of his/her Normal Retirement Date by delivering to the Employer a written notice stating his/her intention to terminate his/her employment with the City on an Employment Termination Date which follows by at least six months the date of delivery of such notice to the Employer, and his/her intention to retire under the Plan as of a Pension Lookback Date which precedes his/her selected Employment Termination Date by either 12, 24 or 36 months, as selected by the Participant in such Notice, which is hereinafter referred to as the "PLSDO Notice:" (This six months' advance notice period for selecting an Employment Termination Date shall be waived for those Participants who submit their PLSDO Notice to the Employer during the first full calendar month following the adoption of the Ordinance containing this PLSDO.) A Participant may not select a Pension Lookback Date in his/her PLSDO Notice which precedes his/her selected Employment Termination Date by 12 months unless he/she shall have accrued at least 21 years of Service under the Plan and shall have attained at least age 51 at his/her selected Employment Termination Date. A Participant may not select a Pension Lookback Date in his/her PLSDO Notice which precedes his/her selected Employment Termination Date by 24 months unless he/she shall have accrued at least 22 years of Service under the Plan and shall have attained at least age 52 at his/her selected Employment Termination Date. A Participant may not select a Pension Lookback Date in his/her PLSDO Notice which precedes his/her selected Employment Termination Date by 36 months unless he/she shall have accrued at least 23 years of Service and shall have attained at least age 53 at his/her selected Employment Termination Date. A Participant may revoke his/her notice of intention to terminate employment with the City and to retire under the Plan by delivery of another written notice to the Employer to that effect at any time prior to the Employment Termination Date stated in his/her previous PLSDO Notice.
(c) 
A Participant who elects the PLSDO Pursuant to Paragraph (b) above shall receive, commencing with or within 30 days following the Employment Termination Date selected in his/her PLSDO Notice:
(1) 
His/her Normal Retirement Benefit determined as of the Pension Lookback Date specified in his/her PLSDO Notice; and
(2) 
A lump sum cash distribution equal to the monthly retirement benefit provided in (1) above, multiplied by the number of months, 12, 24 or 36 specified in the Participant's PLSDO Notice, or the number of months which elapsed from the Pension Lookback Date which the Participant selected in his/her PLSDO Notice to the last day of the month in which occurs his/her death or actual termination of employment, if earlier. This lump sum cash distribution shall be eligible for rollover to the Participant's Individual Retirement Account or to another qualified plan pursuant to Subsections 149.07(m) and (n) hereof, subject to the limitations and requirements of the Internal Revenue Code.
After commencement of payment to a Participant pursuant to his/her PLSDO election, such Participant shall not be eligible for any other benefit under the Plan, except for the Normal Retirement Benefit provided by (1) above and the Cost of Living Adjustment thereon provided by (d) below.
(d) 
The Cost of Living Adjustment provided by Subsection 149.04(g) hereof to the Normal Retirement Benefit provided under (c)(1) above shall be based upon the basic monthly salary paid to a Class A firefighter of the City at a prior month, which is determined from time to time by the number of months, 12, 24, or 36, by which the Pension Lookback Date specified in the Participant's PLSDO Notice precedes the Employment Termination Date specified in such Notice, or the number of months which elapsed from the Pension Lookback Date specified in such Notice to the last day of the month in which occurs his/her death or actual termination of employment, if earlier. No Cost of Living Adjustment shall be calculated or credited under Subsection 149.04(g) hereof with respect to any period prior to a Participant's Employment Termination Date.
(e) 
A Participant who delivers a PLSDO Notice to the City and who subsequently becomes permanently and totally disabled and eligible for a Disability Retirement Benefit under Subsections 149.04(e) or (f) hereof prior to the Employment Termination Date specified in such PLSDO Notice may revoke such Notice prior to the Employment Termination Date, in which case it shall be deemed of no effect, and the Participant shall retire with the Disability Retirement Benefit for which he/she is eligible under the Plan.
(f) 
In the event that a Participant who delivers a PLSDO Notice to the City dies prior to the actual payment of the lump sum cash distribution required by his/her election of a PLSDO and Subparagraph (c)(2) above, then it shall be paid to his/her surviving spouse, or if none, to his/her surviving children per stirpes or if none, to his/her estate, but the amount of such lump sum cash distribution shall be calculated by multiplying the monthly retirement benefit provided in Subparagraph (c)(1) above by the number of whole months which elapsed from the Pension Lookback Date which the Participant selected in his/her PLSDO Notice to the last day of the month in which his/her death occurs. In the event that a Participant who delivers a PLSDO Notice to the City suffers a total and permanent disability which results in the termination of his/her employment prior to the Employment Termination Date selected in such Notice and does not revoke his/her PLSDO Election, then the amount of such lump sum cash distribution shall be calculated by multiplying the monthly retirement benefit provided in Subparagraph (c)(1) above by the number of whole months which elapsed from the Pension Lookback Date which the Participant selected in his/her PLSDO Notice to the last day of the month in which his/her termination of employment occurs. Further, in the event of the death of a Participant prior to his/her receipt of a lump sum cash distribution required by his/her election of the PLSDO, such Participant's surviving spouse shall have the option of voiding the Participant's election of the PLSDO, forfeiting the lump sum cash distribution and receiving the retirement benefits provided by the Plan to the surviving spouse as though the Participant had never elected the PLSDO. In the event such Participant's surviving spouse elects to receive the lump sum cash distribution elected by the Participant prior to his/her death and in accordance with Subparagraph (c)(2) above, then the monthly retirement benefit payable to such surviving spouse shall be reduced in accordance with the deceased Participant's election of a PLSDO and Subparagraph (c)(1) above.
(g) 
Any lump sum cash distribution payable in accordance with this Section 149.09 shall be subject to applicable Federal and State Income Tax Regulations and withholding and excise taxes.
(h) 
A Participant who elects a PLSDO shall continue to make all required Participant Contributions to the Plan until his/her selected Employment Termination Date.
[Ord. 5-2011, passed 1-19-2011; Ord. 24-2016, passed 8-3-2016]
(a) 
Funding policy. The Employer shall make contributions to the Pension Fund in accordance with Section 149.02(a) and the Board shall invest the Pension Fund in accordance with Section 149.02(a) and the Board shall invest the Pension Fund in accordance with the terms of the Plan and Act 205.
(b) 
Other City funds not liable. So long as the City funds the Plan in conformance with Act 205, payment of pensions and allowances as provided under this Plan shall not be a charge on any other fund of the Employer or account under its control, other than the Fund related to the Firefighters' Pension Plan established hereunder.
(c) 
Information to be furnished by the employer. The Employer shall furnish to the Board such information in the Employer's possession as the Board requires from time to time to perform its duties under the Plan.
(d) 
Prohibition against diversion of funds:
(1) 
Except as provided below and otherwise specifically permitted by law, it shall be impossible by operation of the Plan or of the Pension Fund, by termination of either, by power of revocation or amendment, by the happening of any contingency, by collateral arrangement or by any other means, for any part of the corpus or income of the Pension Fund maintained pursuant to the Plan or any Funds contributed thereto to be used for, or diverted to, purposes other than the exclusive benefit of Participants, former Participants or their Survivors.
(2) 
In the event the Employer shall make an excessive contribution under a mistake of fact, the Employer may demand repayment of such excessive contribution at any time within one year following the term of payment and the trustee or custodian of the Pension Fund shall return such amount to the Employer within the one year period. Earnings of the Plan attributable to the contributions may not be returned to the Employer but any losses attributable thereto must reduce the amount so returned.
(e) 
Participant's rights. This Plan shall not be deemed to constitute a contract between the Employer and any Participant or to be a consideration or an inducement for the employment of any Participant or Employee. Nothing contained in this Plan shall be deemed to give any Participant or Employee the right to be retained in the service of the Employer or to interfere with the right of the Employer to discharge any Participant or Employee at any time regardless of the effect which such discharge shall have upon the Employee as a Participant in this Plan.
(f) 
Anti-alienation provision.
(1) 
Subject to the exceptions provided below, no benefit which shall be payable out of the Pension Fund to any person (including a Participant or any Survivor) shall be subject in any manner to anticipation, alienation, sale, transfer, assignment, pledge, encumbrance, charge, or claim of any creditor. Any attempt to anticipate, alienate, sell, transfer, assign, pledge, encumber, or charge the same shall be void; and no such benefit shall in any manner be liable for, or subject to, the debts, contracts, liabilities, engagements, or torts of any such person, nor shall it be subject to attachment or legal process for or against such person, and the same shall not be recognized by the Board, except to such extent as may be required by law.
(2) 
Subparagraph (1) shall not apply to a "qualified domestic relations order" defined in Code Section 414(p), and those other domestic relations orders permitted to be so treated by the Administrator under the provisions of the Retirement Equity Act of 1984 or other federal or state law. The Administrator shall establish a written procedure to determine the qualified status of domestic relations orders and to administer distributions under such qualified orders. Further, a former spouse of a Participant shall not be treated as the spouse or surviving spouse for any purposes under the Plan.
(g) 
Incapacity of recipient of benefits. If any person entitled to receive benefits shall be physically or mentally incapable of receiving or acknowledging receipt of any payment of benefits, the Board, upon the receipt of satisfactory evidence that such person is so incapacitated and that another person or institution is maintaining him and that no guardian or committee has been appointed for him, may provide for the payment of benefits hereunder to such person or institution so maintaining him, and any such payments so made shall be deemed for every purpose to have been made to or for the benefit of such incapacitated person.
(h) 
Ownership of plan assets. Nothing contained herein shall be deemed to give any Participant or his beneficiary any interest in any specific property of the Plan or any right except to receive such distributions as are expressly provided for in this Plan.
(i) 
Legal action. In the event any claim, suit or proceeding is brought regarding the pension Fund and/or the Plan established hereunder to which the Employer or the Board or members of the Board may be a party, and such claim, suit or proceeding is resolved in favor of the Employer or the Board, they shall be entitled to be reimbursed from the Pension Fund for any and all costs, attorney's fees, and other expenses pertaining thereto incurred by them for which they shall have become liable.
(j) 
Indemnification of fiduciaries. To the fullest extent allowed by Act 205, the Employer shall defend and hold harmless City Council, the Board and their members, and shall indemnify the same, against any and all claims or liabilities which may be asserted against any of them by reason of any action or omission in the administration or operation of the Plan, except in the case of any criminal liability, fraud or willful wrongdoing.
(k) 
Headings. The headings and subheadings of this Plan have been inserted for convenience of reference and are to be ignored in any construction of the provisions hereof.
(l) 
Gender and number. Wherever any words are used herein in the masculine, feminine or neuter gender, they shall be construed as though they were also used in another gender in all cases where they would so apply, and whenever any words are used herein in the singular or plural form, they shall be construed as though they were also used in the other form in all cases where they would so apply.
(m) 
Receipt and release for payments. Any payment to a Participant, the Participant's legal representative, Survivor, or to any guardian or committee appointed for such Participant or Survivor in accordance with the provisions of the Plan, shall, to the extent thereof, be in full satisfaction of all claims hereunder against the Board and the Employer, either of whom may require such Participant, legal representative, Survivor, guardian or committee, as a condition precedent to such payment, to execute a receipt and release thereof in such form as shall be determined by the Board or the Employer.
(n) 
Governing law to prevail over inconsistent plan provisions. The Plan shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with Act 205 and the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania except to the extent that such laws have been specifically preempted by the Code or other Federal legislation. Notwithstanding any provision of this Plan to the contrary, contributions, benefits and service credit with respect to qualified military service will be provided in accordance with Section 414(u) of the Internal Revenue Code and regulations duly promulgated thereunder. The plan and benefits hereunder shall be conformed and amended to the extent necessary to comply with all applicable laws.