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Decision Time



Well, it's finally come. What times that you ask? Last week, my employer sent out letters to all the County employee's that eligible for retirement. This is something that they do periodically. They offer an incentive. This year I fall into the criteria set up, 10 years employment and age 55. The other is 30 years employment and any age.


In a couple of weeks, I am to receive another letter showing what my monthly pension would be. It will be calculated to 16 years plus and additional 4 years giving me 20 years.


The way I see it, I've got different choices I could make.

1. Take early retirement, move back closer to family where the cost if living is cheaper than where I currently am. Get a part time job until I reach full retirement age to collect Social Security. I'd take a big hit if I claimed it now. I could claim that at 66, or even wait until I turn 70 for the maximum. Then there's the pension from my former employer where the pension won't be much, somewhere in the neighborhood of $418 a month. If I take it at age 55, that amount get cuts in half.




2. I could tough it out and wait until full retirement age.


There's no guarantee that an incentive would be offered again, and if so, when. It just depends on the investing the county does with the retirement funds. When the investments make money they tend to make these offers.


I've got some figuring to do in the meantime so that I'll have something to compare.


What ever I decide to do, I have until December 31, 2007, to decide. If I do decide to retire, I'll until June 30, 2008 to retire.


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Employers, public and private, are desperate to get out from under the costs of large benefits packages.


Early out packages are their way of reducing their contingent costs by reducing the number of years and amount that you've paid into the system.


This is not an isolated trend for civil service employees. It's happening all over- or at least in states that can afford to offer it.


I believe that you can expect to see more early-out offers with better and better terms as you close in on 30 years.


In most retirement systems, there is a magic number (like 25 or 30). At that time the emplyer has to fully fund the retirement account. If employers can get an employee to early-out years before the magic number is reached, they can save 10s of thousands of dollars. With 10s of thousands of civil servents, that adds up to real money.


Whatever you decide, you are in cat-bird seat. If you go early, you are still young enough to have another career. If you stay, your account will grow and your retirement income will be bigger.


Win-win situations are so rare in life- and couldn't happen to a nicer guy.


Congrats Jan- good luck with whatever direction you decide to go.





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Congrats on the offer, but my advice to you would be that do not rush into anything.


Whatever you do, think it out first. The pros and cons and stuff like that.


I'm sure you'll already do that, but make sure that you are satisfied with what you decide.


All the best for the future. May you get whatever you desire....


The Beastkid

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This is the third time the incentive has been offered. At the facility I'm at, the Administrator has a list of 98 people who are eligible for early retirement. In the two departments I'm in, Housekeeping and Laundry, there is 11 out of 28 in Laundry and 12 out of 50 in Housekeeping. Depending upon how many decide to retire, it will have a big impact.


From the annual estimate that the County provides, if I stay to age 65, I would be looking at approximately 2200 a month. So it will be interesting to see what they offer.

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  • Site Moderator

I've pretty much decided on NOT retiring early. I'd only be making half of what my monthly income is now. That would mean that I would have to get another fulltime job instead of a parttime one.



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