COLUMBUS—The Ohio House today voted with bipartisan support for House Bill 572, legislation that allows county developmental disabilities board employees who perform full-time services in a school to be eligible for a full year of service with the Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) if they are employed throughout the academic year, which is only nine months.
“These employees work tirelessly for disabled students and it is important that they continue to be granted the same service credit for their pension that teachers are,” said Scherer.
While these employees have been granted a full year of credit previously, it was recently determined that this was not a practice that was explicitly allowed in Ohio law. State Representatives Gary Scherer (R-Circleville) and Stephanie Howse (D-Cleveland) introduced the legislation in order to rectify the reversal of a 30-year policy.
“This bill was a provision included in another OPERS bill that I was asked to introduce in order to start a discussion,” Scherer explained. “After listening to many constituents and others throughout the state, I am pleased that the original bill is not moving forward. However, this issue in particular emerged as a common-sense policy that codifies a long standing practice which needs to be clarified in the law.”
According to committee testimony, by not making this change for these employees working for developmental disability boards, they must work 36 years to earn a full 30 years of service. By making these employees eligible for a full year of credit, the legislation establishes parity in the retirement service credit system.
House Bill 572 will now proceed to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.