79-915. Retirement system; membership; requirements; certain contemplated business transactions regarding retirement system participation; procedures; costs.

(1) Persons residing outside of the United States and engaged temporarily as school employees in the State of Nebraska shall not become members of the retirement system.

(2) On and after July 1, 2010, no school employee shall be authorized to participate in the retirement system provided for in the School Employees Retirement Act unless the employee (a) is a United States citizen or (b) is a qualified alien under the federal Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq., as such act existed on January 1, 2009, and is lawfully present in the United States.

(3)(a) The board may determine that a governmental entity currently participating in the retirement system no longer qualifies, in whole or in part, under section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code as a participating employer in a governmental plan.

(b)(i) To aid governmental entities in their business decisionmaking process, any governmental entity currently participating in the retirement system contemplating a business transaction that may result in such entity no longer qualifying, in whole or in part, under section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code may notify the board in writing as soon as reasonably practicable, but no later than one hundred eighty days before the transaction is to occur.

(ii) The board when timely notified shall, as soon as is reasonably practicable, obtain from its contracted actuary the cost of any actuarial study necessary to determine the potential funding obligation. The board will notify the entity of such cost.

(iii) If such entity pays the board's contracted actuary pursuant to subdivision (3)(c)(vi) of this section for any actuarial study necessary to determine the potential funding obligation, the board shall, as soon as reasonably practicable following its receipt of the actuarial study, (A) determine whether the entity's contemplated business transaction will cause the entity to no longer qualify under section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code, (B) determine whether the contemplated business transaction constitutes a plan termination by the entity, (C) determine the potential funding obligation, (D) determine the administrative costs that will be incurred by the board or the Nebraska Public Employees Retirement Systems in connection with the entity's removal from the retirement system, and (E) notify the entity of such determinations.

(iv) Failure to timely notify the board pursuant to subdivision (3)(b)(i) of this section may result in the entity being treated as though the board made a decision pursuant to subdivision (3)(a) of this section.

(c) If the board makes a determination pursuant to subdivision (3)(a) of this section, or if the entity engages in the contemplated business transaction reviewed under subdivision (3)(b) of this section that results in the entity no longer qualifying under section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code:

(i) The board shall notify the entity that it no longer qualifies under section 414(d) of the Internal Revenue Code within ten business days after the determination;

(ii) The affected plan members shall be immediately considered fully vested;

(iii) The affected plan members shall become inactive within ninety days after the board's determination;

(iv) The entity shall pay to the School Retirement Fund an amount equal to any funding obligation;

(v) The entity shall pay to the Expense Fund an amount equal to any administrative costs incurred by the board or the Nebraska Public Employees Retirement Systems in connection with the entity's removal from the retirement system; and

(vi) The entity shall pay directly to the board's contracted actuary an amount equal to the cost of any actuarial study necessary to aid the board in determining the amount of such funding obligation, if not previously paid.

(d) For purposes of this subsection:

(i) Business transaction means a merger; consolidation; sale of assets, equipment, or facilities; termination of a division, department, section, or subgroup of the entity; or any other business transaction that results in termination of some or all of the entity's workforce; and

(ii) Funding obligation means the financial liability of the retirement system to provide benefits for the affected plan members incurred by the retirement system due to the entity's business transaction calculated using the methodology and assumptions recommended by the board's contracted actuary and approved by the board. The methodology and assumptions used must be structured in a way that ensures the entity is financially liable for all the costs of the entity's business transaction, and the retirement system is not financially liable for any of the cost of the entity's business transaction.

(e) The board may adopt and promulgate rules and regulations to carry out this subsection including, but not limited to, the methods of notifying the board of pending business transactions, the acceptable methods of payment, and the timing of such payment.

Source:Laws 1945, c. 219, § 11, p. 642; R.S.Supp.,1947, § 79-2911; Laws 1949, c. 256, § 445, p. 845; R.S.1943, (1994), § 79-1511; Laws 1996, LB 900, § 550; Laws 2010, LB950, § 13; Laws 2018, LB1005, § 23.
Operative Date: July 19, 2018