The 2020 Legislative Session is scheduled to run Monday, January 13 through Thursday, March 12. A summary of each bill impacting LEOFF 2 will appear below as information becomes available. Links provide detail.

LEOFF 2 Board Bills

Month of Death Payments (HB 1414 | SB 5335)

HB 1414 | SB 5335

In the month a retiree passes away, the benefit payment is prorated based on the number of days the person was alive in the month. If the retiree had already received their pension, the Department of Retirement Systems must collect the partial overpayment from the retiree’s beneficiary or estate.  This bill provides a retiree’s beneficiary or estate a full month’s benefit for the month a retiree or survivor passes away.

Survivor Option Reelection (HB 2678 | SB 6417)

HB 2678 | SB 6417

LEOFF 2 members must make an irrevocable decision to leave a survivor benefit prior to knowing exactly what their pension benefit will be. This bill allows all LEOFF 2 retirees to have a 90 day window after the receipt of their first retirement payment to change their survivor election.

Status HB 2678: First reading, referred to Appropriations. (View Original Bill)

Status SB 6417: Passed by Senate Committee on Ways & Means and placed on second reading by Rules Committee on February 17.

Definition of Period of War (HB 2655 | SB 6418)

HB 2655 | SB 6418

The state law defining “veteran” for purposes of awarding no-cost interruptive military service credit, and other LEOFF 2 benefits, must be updated each time there is a new armed conflict that qualifies for a Campaign Badge. This bill prevents the continual need for updates to the statute, by moving definition of “veteran” under the LEOFF 2 statutes and rewriting it to so all armed conflicts where Campaign Badges are awarded qualify for no-cost interruptive military service credit, and other LEOFF 2 benefits.

Status HB 2655: Public Hearing in the House Committee on Appropriations  January 23. (Committee Materials)

Status SB 6418: Passed by Senate Committee on Ways & Means and sent to Rules Committee for second reading January 30.

Confidentiality of DRS Records (HB 2716 | SB 6499)

HB 2716 | SSB 6499

Exempts from disclosure under the Public Records Act medical information in files and records of members of retirement plans administered by the Department of Retirement Systems. Provides exceptions for authorized representatives of an applicant, health care providers regarding applicants for disability benefits, and persons assisting the Department of Retirement Systems.  Medical information in files and records maintained by the LEOFF Plan 2 retirement board is confidential and exempt from the PRA’s disclosure requirements.

Status HB 2716: First reading, referred to State Government & Tribal Relations.

Status SSB 6499: The 1st substitute bill was passed by the Senate on February 13.

Scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on State Government & Tribal Relations at 10:00 AM on February 20 (Subject to change). (Committee Materials)
 
Scheduled for executive session in the House Committee on State Government & Tribal Relations at 8:00 AM on February 21 (Subject to change). (Committee Materials)

Bills Impacting LEOFF 2

Concerning the Definition of Veteran (SHB 2544)

SHB 2544

The state law defining “veteran” for purposes of awarding no-cost interruptive military service credit, and other LEOFF 2 benefits, must be updated each time there is a new armed conflict that qualifies for a Campaign Badge.  This bill prevents the continual need for updates to the statute, by changing the definition of “veteran” so that all armed conflicts where Campaign Badges are awarded qualify for no-cost interruptive military service credit. 

It also requires the Select Committee on Pension Policy and the Law Enforcement Officers’ and Firefighters’ Plan 2 Retirement Board, with the assistance of the Office of the State Actuary, Department of Retirement Systems, Washington State Military Department, and the Washington State Department of Veteran Affairs, to study the provision of military service credit to members of the retirement systems, in particular the cost of expanding free military service credit to members who received an expeditionary medal, but not a campaign medal.  The report is due to the Legislature on January 2, 2021.

Status HB 2544: The 1st substitute bill was passed by the by the House on February 13. Referred to Senate Ways and Means.