House Bill 1217 impacts individuals who participate in the Missouri public employee retirement system. The bill affects both PSRS and PEERS participants.
HB1217 basically states that if anyone participating in the PSRS or PEERS retirement plans could forfeit their benefits if they are found guilty of certain felonies in connection with their employment.
HB1217 may be just what the doctor ordered. It may have a major impact for individuals in our school district depending on what's already been uncovered as well as what the State Auditors may uncover during their investigation.
Hopefully HB 1217 will encourage individuals to always do the right thing going forward knowing that they could lose their retirement benefits if found guilty of certain felonies.
After posting this article I was forwarded an article from July that discussed the law with respect to someone who embezzled more than $1M from Missouri State University over an 8 year period and is now serving 5 years in federal prison. However, HB 1217 did not apply to this person because he pleaded guilty before the law became effective.
The June 2014 newsletter that was sent out to individuals that participate in the Public Service Retirement System had the following paragraph on the cover of the newsletter:
The following bills were passed that impact PSRS/PEERS:
House Bill 1217
This bill specifies that participants in Missouri public employee retirement systems
who are found guilty of certain felonies in connection with their employment will
forfeit their retirement benefits for service on or after the effective date of this bill.
This bill also places into statute that public employee retirement benefits cannot
be transferred, assigned or be subject to a levy, attachment or garnishment except
as allowed by a specific plan’s rules. While PSRS/PEERS has a similar provision
already in our statutes, this bill puts additional safeguards in place to further
protect retirees from being taken advantage of with regard to their pension benefits.
Any participant of a plan who is found guilty of a felony offense listed in subsection 3 of this section, which is committed in direct connection with or directly related to the participant's duties as an employee on or after the effective date of this section, shall not be eligible to receive any retirement benefits from the respective plan based on service rendered on or after the effective date of this section, except a participant may still request from the respective retirement system a refund of the participant's plan contributions, including interest credited to the participant's account.
Felony Offenses Listed in Subsection 3
The finding of guilt for any of the following offenses or a substantially similar offense provided under federal law shall result in the ineligibility of retirement benefits as provided in subsection 1 of this section:
- The offense of felony stealing under section 570.030 when such offense involved money, property, or services valued at five thousand dollars or more as determined by the court;
- The offense of felony receiving stolen property under section 570.080 when such offense involved money, property, or services valued at five thousand dollars or more as determined by the court;
- The offense of forgery under section 570.090;
- The offense of felony counterfeiting under section 570.103;
- The offense of bribery of a public servant under section 576.010; or
- The offense of acceding to corruption under section 576.020.
HB 1217 which became effective on 08/28/2014 may prove to be very interesting in the coming months.
Below you will find links to the HB1217 web page, the actual text of HB1217 and a link to the PSRS Benefit Check Newsletter.
|Sponsor:||Dugger, Tony (141)|
|Co-Sponsor:||Crawford, Sandy (129) ... et al.|
|Governor Action:||07/09/2014 - Approved by Governor (G)|
|Last Action:||07/09/2014 - Delivered to Secretary of State (G)|
To amend chapters 105 and 434, RSMo, by adding thereto six new sections relating to public
employee retirement plan benefits.