Section 36-27-4


Published: 2015

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Section 36-27-4

Section 36-27-4Membership - Generally; denial of membership; absence from service; military service.

(a) The membership of the retirement system shall be composed as follows:



(1) All persons who shall become employees after October 1, 1945, shall become members of the retirement system as a condition of their employment.



(2) Any person who is an employee on October 1, 1945, shall become a member as of that date unless, within a period of 90 days next following, such employee shall file with the Board of Control on a form prescribed by the board a notice of his or her election not to be covered in the membership of the system and a duly executed waiver of all present and prospective benefits which would otherwise inure to him or her on account of his or her membership in the retirement system.



(3) An employee whose membership in the retirement system is contingent on his or her own election and who elects not to become a member may thereafter apply for and be admitted to membership with all prior service credit as otherwise provided for in this article by applying for such membership at any time prior to July 1, 1962; provided, that the employee pays to the treasurer of the retirement system on or before July 1, 1962, a sum equal to the total contributions which he or she would have made as a member during the period of his or her service as an employee from October 1, 1945, to the date of his or her application for membership. Any member or retired employee who at one time worked as a nonmember may now receive credit for prior service and for the years worked as a nonmember; provided, that the member or retired employee pays to the treasurer of the retirement system on or before July 1, 1962, a sum equal to the total contributions which he or she would have made as a member during the period of his or her employment from October 1, 1945, to the date he or she became a member.



(4) All county engineers of the several counties of the state in whose salaries the State Department of Transportation participates, except county engineers who are already members of this retirement system under provisions of this article or who are covered under the provisions of a county retirement system supported by funds of the employing county. The effective date for the inclusion of county engineers in the system shall be October 1, 1964. Membership in the retirement system shall be optional for county engineers employed on the date participation becomes effective, and any county engineer who elects to enroll in the retirement system within one year thereafter may be admitted to membership with all prior service credit and all membership service credit; provided, that the county engineer pays to the treasurer of the retirement system at the time he or she enrolls a sum equal to the total employee contributions and interest he or she would have had to his or her credit had he or she been a member during the period of his or her service as county engineer from October 1, 1945, to the date of his or her application for membership. Should a county engineer employed on the date participation becomes effective elect to enroll as a member without paying such prior membership contributions and interest, he or she may become a member without credit for service prior to date of his or her enrollment. Membership shall be compulsory for all county engineers who are eligible for such membership upon entering service as a county engineer after the date participation becomes effective to the extent of the State Department of Transportation's participation in his or her salary.



(b) The Board of Control may, in its discretion, deny the right to become members to any class of employees whose compensation is only partly paid by the state, except as provided in this article.



(c) Should any member in any period of six consecutive years after becoming a member be absent from service more than five years or withdraw his or her contributions, as provided in subdivision (1) of subsection (c) of Section 36-27-16, or retire or die, he or she shall thereupon cease to be a member.



(d) A member in service on January 1, 1976, who has honorable duty consisting of active full-time military service in the Armed Forces of the United States, exclusive of any summer or weekend service in a reserve or national guard component of any branch of the armed forces, and who has not received credit toward retirement status in the Employees' Retirement System of Alabama for that military service, may be granted by the Board of Control membership service credit for the period of such service in the armed forces; provided, that such member pays into the Employees' Retirement System, in a lump sum prior to October 1, 1976, an amount equal to four percent of the average compensation paid to a state employee during each claimed year of full-time military service, plus and together therewith eight percent interest compounded from the last date of such claimed military service; and provided further, that such a member shall not receive membership service credit for more than four years of military service, and shall receive no credit for military service if such member is receiving military service retirement benefits, other than disability allowances or benefits, from any branch of the United States Armed Forces, or by reason of any such service in any branch of the armed forces, or, if such member received anything other than an honorable discharge for and including the claimed military service. Anything in this article to the contrary notwithstanding, if any person becoming a member of the Employees' Retirement System after January 1, 1976, shall have honorable duty consisting of active full-time military service in the Armed Forces of the United States, exclusive of any summer or weekend service in a reserve or national guard component of any branch of the armed forces, such member may be granted by the Board of Control membership service credit for such period of service in the armed forces; provided, that such member pays into the Employees' Retirement System, in a lump sum within one year next after the first day of the pay period in which the first deduction to the Employees' Retirement System is made after having been honorably discharged from the armed forces, an amount equal to four percent of the average compensation paid to a state employee during each claimed year of full-time military service, plus and together therewith eight percent interest compounded from the last date of such claimed military service; and provided further, that no member shall receive more than four years' membership service credit for military service, and no credit for military service shall be granted if such member is receiving military service retirement benefits, other than disability allowances or benefits, from any branch of the United States Armed Forces, or by reason of any service in any branch of the armed forces, or, if such member received anything other than an honorable discharge for and including the claimed military service.



(e) Any member, who retired prior to January 1, 1976, who has service in the armed forces, as described in this section, shall be entitled to claim such full-time military service; provided, that such retired member pays into the Employees' Retirement System, in a lump sum prior to October 1, 1976, an amount equal to four percent of the average compensation paid to a state employee during such claimed year of full-time military service, plus and together therewith eight percent compounded from the last date of such claimed military service; and provided further, that such retired member shall not receive membership service credit for more than four years of military service, and shall receive no credit for military service, if such member is receiving military service retirement benefits, other than disability allowance or benefits, from any branch of the armed forces, or by reason of any such service in any branch of the armed forces. The provisions of this subsection shall be retroactive to October 1, 1975.



(f) All retirement allowance payments due on or after January 1, 1976, to members of the Employees' Retirement System of Alabama who retired prior to that date and who have complied with the provisions of this section shall be redetermined as if the provisions of this section were in effect at the time they retired; provided, that any increase in the retirement allowance payment for a member who, prior to October 1, 1975, retired under the provisions of any optional benefit elected pursuant to Acts 1945, No. 515, as amended, shall accrue only to the retired member, and no person designated to receive any payments after the death of a retired member under the provisions of any such optional benefit shall receive any increase in such payments.

(Acts 1945, No. 515, p. 734, §3; Acts 1947, No. 606, p. 445, §2; Acts 1951, No. 696, p. 1200, §1; Acts 1953, No. 79, p. 106, §2; Acts 1955, No. 478, p. 1085, §11; Acts 1961, No. 713, p. 1008, §1; Acts 1963, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 44, p. 144, §2; Acts 1964, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 248, p. 345, §1; Acts 1969, No. 173, p. 465, §1; Acts 1975, 4th Ex. Sess., No. 66, p. 2680, §3; Acts 1989, No. 89-695, p. 1370, §2; Act 2012-377, p. 944, §1.)

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