ERSRI online is your source for the latest information from the Employees’ Retirement System of Rhode Island, the state’s largest public employee retirement system. The $8 billion retirement system handles pension issues for state employees, teachers, the Municipal Employees’ Retirement System (MERS), MERS police and fire, correctional officers, BHDDH nurses, state police and judges.
Here, you'll find the latest tools to help you plan for your retirement, calculate your benefits and eligibility, and understand how laws and regulations may affect you.
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News and Updates
ERSRI to hold Retirement Board Election
Interested in becoming a member of the State Retirement Board? The Employees’ Retirement System of Rhode Island (ERSRI) will hold an election for seven new Board members in January 2016. The 15-member Retirement Board oversees the state’s pension system and is responsible for its administration. The Board approves disability pensions, votes on the target investment rate of return and other assumptions, and certifies employer contribution rates. The Board meets monthly, and has six standing subcommittees. If you are interested in running for election to the State Retirement Board, visit ERSRI at 50 Service Avenue beginning September 4, 2015 to pick up nomination papers. You must then secure 100 signatures from your particular membership group and return the nomination papers to ERSRI by October 19 at 4 p.m. Board seats up for election, and the members currently serving in those seats, include:
Active state employee representatives:
- John J. Meehan
- Claire M. Newell
Active teacher representatives:
- William B. Finelli
- John P. Maguire
Retiree member representatives:
- Michael R. Boyce
- Roger P. Boudreau
Active municipal employee representative:
- Louis M. Prata
Any active contributing or retired ERSRI member as of September 15, 2015 is eligible to run for election to the State Retirement Board. In addition, active contributing members and retired ERSRI members as of September 15, 2015 may vote for a candidate within their respective membership groups. Once the ballot has been formalized, each ERSRI member will receive a ballot and candidate information sheet by mail. The State Board of Elections will tally the votes on behalf of ERSRI.
IMPORTANT DATES FOR THE JANUARY 2016 RETIREMENT BOARD ELECTIONS
- September 4, 2015: Nomination papers will be available at 50 Service Avenue.
- October 19, 2015: The deadline to submit nomination papers to 50 Service Avenue is 4 P.M.
- November 2015 Board Meeting: Lottery for ballot order will be held during the Retirement Board meeting.
- December 28-31, 2015: Ballots will be mailed to all retirees and members who are eligible to vote.
- January 31, 2016: All completed ballots must be postmarked by this date.
- February 2016: The R.I. Board of Elections will tabulate ballots.
- March 14, 2016: New members will be sworn in at the Retirement Board meeting.
Settlement Update: $500 Stipend coming this month
If you are a participant who retired on or before 07/01/15, you will receive the first $500 stipend in your August 2015 pension check.
Members who retired on or before June 30, 2012 received a one-time 2% cost-of-living adjustment in the July 2015 payroll.
New Design of Pension Checks and Direct Deposit Remittances
Effective January 1, 2015 pension checks and direct deposit remittances have a new layout.
To review the new design of pension checks and direct deposit remittances
please click here: New Format
For an explanation of your 2014 1099R form please click here: 1099R Form
For an explanation for members who turned 59 ½ during 2014 and received two 1099R forms
please click here: Multiple 1099R Form
Questions about retiree healthcare should be directed to the Office of Employee Benefits. You can reach that office at (401) 222-3160.
New Retirement Board Member
The Retirement Board recently swore in a new member, replacing Carl Heintzelman. Mark Carruolo, Chief of Staff to Warwick Mayor Avedisian was appointed by Governor Chafee to the Retirement Board.
58 MERS Plans to Receive COLA in 2015
Fifty-eight municipal pension plans are slated to provide cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) in 2015. Members of these plans, who retired before June 30, 2012 and were previously receiving or eligible for a COLA are now eligible to receive a COLA the month following their retirement date anniversary in 2015.
These plans, part of the Municipal Employees’ Retirement System, were actuarially calculated to be over 80 percent funded for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014. Eligible retirees of these 58 plans will see an increase of 2.73 percent on the first $25,168 of their annual pension benefit for calendar year 2015.
For those who retired after June 30, 2012, COLA eligibility is either your Social Security Normal Retirement Age or if you retired at that age, three years after your retirement date. Click here for COLA FAQs.
For a list of the 58 MERS plans providing COLAs, click here.
Are you planning to retire within the next six months? If so, ERSRI offers group counseling at our Warwick office. A benefit estimate and retirement forms are provided at the group sessions. Schedule your appointment three to six months before retirement by contacting the center at 401-462-7600.