The City of Gainesville has established and maintains two Pension Plans for its employees. The Consolidated Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Retirement Plan covers all Firefighters and Police Officers. The General Employees Pension Plan covers all other regular employees. Participation in either Pension Plan requires a mandatory contribution from both the Employee and the City of Gainesville.
The City of Gainesville’s Pension Plans are defined benefit pension plans providing retirement, termination, disability and death benefits. The Consolidated Police Officers’ and Firefighters’ Plan is established under the City of Gainesville Code of Ordinances, Chapter 2, Article VI, Division 8. The Employees’ Pension Plan is established under City of Gainesville Code of Ordinances, Chapter 2, Article VI, Division 5. Because the plans are defined benefit plans, the ultimate benefit depends upon factors such as compensation level, years of service, plan multiplier and the form in which the benefits are paid at retirement.
Retiree Health Savings (RHS) Plan
The City of Gainesville provides the Retiree Health Savings (RHS) Plan which serves as a tool to help employees save money for post- employment medical expenses. Regular City of Gainesville employees (excluding Police and Fire) contribute a mandatory ½ percent to their RHS accounts on a biweekly basis. The money goes in tax-free, and when withdrawn for qualified medical, dental, vision or long-term care expenses after retirement, the reimbursements from the account are tax-free.
Supplemental Retirement Plans
In addition to the City’s mandatory pension plan, employees can also contribute to the ICMA 457 Deferred Compensation Plan. Employees can save tax-deferred money for retirement with the convenience of pretax payroll deductions. Contributions are taxed only upon withdrawal from your account and there is no penalty associated with the withdrawal of your 457 money after leaving employment. Withdrawals may not be made while you are still employed except under an extreme hardship condition as defined by the IRS.
Employees are also able to contribute to a ROTH IRA through payroll deduction. Contributions in a ROTH are made after taxes, however, the growth is tax deferred and if the account is held for five years and the participant is age 59 ½ there will be no taxes on any amounts withdrawn.