Your VCERA Retirement Plan

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Defined Benefit Plan

The defined benefit plan administered by VCERA (“Plan”) is qualified under Section 401(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Plan provides a lifetime retirement benefit when you meet certain eligibility requirements.

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Membership

Membership in the retirement system is effective upon appointment to an eligible position of service with the County of Ventura or eligible district.  It is mandatory for all regular employees of the County of Ventura, or contracting district, who are scheduled to work 64 or more hours biweekly.

NOTE: Employees of the Ventura County Courts are considered County employees for the purposes of this website.

There are two types of membership in VCERA: Safety and General. Safety membership is applicable to those employees involved in active law enforcement or fire suppression. 

Employees hired prior to January 1, 2013 are often referred to as “Legacy” members and those hired after January 1, 2013 are often referred to as “PEPRA” members. PEPRA refers to the Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act, which changed certain plan provisions for employees hired after January 1, 2013.

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Employee & Employer Contributions

Your retirement plan is funded by both employee and employer contributions. Your employee contributions are a biweekly payroll deduction taken on base compensation as well as other cash payments that fall under the definition of “compensation earnable” (for Legacy tiers) or “pensionable compensation” (for PEPRA tiers 5, 6, 7 & 8).

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Your Rights and Responsibilities

Confidentiality

The County Employees’ Retirement Law states that individual records of members shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed to anyone except as may be necessary for Plan administration, upon order of a court of competent jurisdiction, or upon written authorization by the member.

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Forfeiture of Benefits

Effective January 1, 2013, all public employees convicted of a job-related felony are subject to pension forfeiture, without exception. The law requires the forfeiture of all accrued rights and benefits in any public retirement system by any public employee convicted of any felony, as of the earliest date of the crime, for conduct arising out of or in the performance of his or her official duties, in pursuit of the office or appointment, or in connection with obtaining salary, disability retirement, service retirement, or other benefits.