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Sec. 1700.  Membership in Tier 6.
 
   (a)   Appointed Chief.  A Chief of Police, a Fire Chief, or a Port Warden (Chief) who is appointed to that position on or after July 1, 2011, and a Chief of the Airport Police who is appointed to that position on or after January 7, 2018, and who is neither a Plan Member nor a Retired Plan Member at the time of appointment, shall become a Tier 6 Plan Member upon appointment unless, within seven calendar days of appointment, he or she files a written opt out election with the Department of Fire and Police Pensions to elect to become a member of the Los Angeles City Employees' Retirement System (LACERS) in lieu of membership in Tier 6.  A Chief who is appointed to that position on or after July 1, 2011 and is already a Department Member on the day of his or her appointment, shall continue to be a member of the Tier to which he or she belonged prior to appointment as Chief.  A Retired Plan Member who is appointed to the position of a Chief on or after July 1, 2011, shall become a member of LACERS at the time of appointment, rather than a Tier 6 Plan Member, and shall continue to receive all benefits to which he or she is entitled as a Retired Plan Member, but shall not accrue any additional right to benefits from the Plan by virtue of his or her employment as a Chief.
 
   (b)   Appointed Members.  Each person, other than a Chief, who shall be appointed as a Department Member on or after July 1, 2011, shall become a Tier 6 Plan Member upon (1) graduation by such person from training at the Police or Fire Academies or equivalent facility imparting basic training as a firefighter or police officer and maintained as such by the City of Los Angeles, or (2) graduation from academy training required by the Harbor Department.  Upon becoming a Tier 6 Plan Member, a member may elect to purchase Years of Service credit for the period of such training in accordance with rules adopted by the Board.
 
   (c)   Persons Who Do Not Become Tier 6 Plan Members.  Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section:
 
   (1)   A person who is a Plan Member of another Tier and who is appointed, without a break in service, to a different position that would otherwise qualify him or her for membership in Tier 6, shall not, by virtue of this new appointment, become a member of Tier 6, but shall continue to be a member of the Tier to which he or she belonged prior to his or her new appointment.
 
   (2)   A person appointed to a sworn position with the Harbor Department prior to January 8, 2006, who did not elect to transfer into Tier 5 and remained a member of LACERS, if subsequently appointed without a break in Harbor Department service to a different Harbor Department sworn position that would otherwise qualify him or her for membership in Tier 6, shall not become a member of Tier 6 upon appointment, but shall remain a LACERS member.
 
   (3)   Any Plan Member who retired on a disability pension from another Tier and is subsequently restored to active duty as a Department Member shall not become a member of Tier 6, but shall return to membership in the Tier from which he or she retired.
 
   (4)   Any Plan Member who retired on a service pension from another Tier and is subsequently returned to active duty as a Department Member shall not become a member of Tier 6, but shall return to membership in the Tier from which he or she retired.
 
   (5)   A person appointed to a sworn position with the Airport Department or Fire Department on or after January 7, 2018, who did not elect to transfer into Tier 6 and remained a member of LACERS, if subsequently appointed without a break in Airport Department service to an Airport Department sworn position or a Fire Department sworn position that would otherwise qualify him or her for membership in Tier 6, shall not become a member of Tier 6 upon appointment, but shall remain a LACERS member.
 
   (d)   Former Members.  Any former member of any Tier, who ceased to be a member as a result of resignation or discharge and who subsequently is reappointed as a Department Member on or after July 1, 2011, shall become a Tier 6 Member.  In the event such person did not receive a refund of contributions for his or her prior service, the definition of "Years of Service" contained in this Tier 6 shall be controlling with respect to such person's entitlement to service credit and such person need not make back contributions on account of such former service.  In the event that the member had no right to a refund of contributions from his or her former Tier, then he or she shall not have any right to have contributions formerly made by him or her under the provisions of a former Tier refunded in the event he or she should subsequently terminate as a Plan Member.  In the event such person received a refund of his or her contributions as a result of his or her termination, then such person's entitlement to Years of Service credit for the period of such former service shall be conditioned upon such person electing to repay and having paid to the Fire and Police Pension Plan the amount of previously refunded contributions, with interest thereon in an amount calculated as interest which would have been earned between the date of such termination and the date of entry into service as a Plan Member in accordance with rules adopted by the Board.  In the event such member does not elect to so repay, the term Years of Service as elsewhere used in this Tier 6 shall not include any periods prior to his or her reappointment, notwithstanding the definitions contained in Section 1702(q) and (r).
 
   (e)   Council Authority to Allow Transfers to Tier 6.  The Council may by ordinance authorize Plan Members of other Tiers to voluntarily transfer to Tier 6, provided such transfers shall be actuarially cost neutral to the Plan.  Ordinances adopted pursuant to this subsection shall be adopted in the same manner as provided in Section 1618(b) of this Charter, but the City Council shall be advised in writing by an enrolled actuary as to the cost of the proposed changes.
 
   (f)   Airport Department Members.  In addition to those Department Members described in Subsection (b) of this section, the following persons qualify for membership in Tier 6 as provided below:
 
   (1)   Persons Appointed On or After January 7, 2018.  Each person appointed on or after January 7, 2018, as a Member of the Airport Department, as defined in Section 1702(d), shall become a Tier 6 Plan Member upon graduation by the person from academy training required by the Airport Department.  Upon becoming a Tier 6 Plan Member, a member may elect to purchase Years of Service credit for the academy training period in accordance with rules adopted by the Board, provided that only academy training time during which the person was a member of the Pension Savings Plan for Part-time, Seasonal and Temporary Employees is eligible for purchase.  An Airport Police Chief appointed on or after January 7, 2018, may irrevocably elect in writing at the time of appointment not to become a member of Tier 6, provided that he or she meets the eligibility requirements for such election as set forth in Section 1700(a).
 
   (2)   Persons Appointed Prior to January 7, 2018.  A person appointed prior to January 7, 2018 as a Member of the Airport Department, as defined in Section 1702(d), and who is employed on that date as a Member of the Airport Department, as defined in Section 1702(d), may make an irrevocable election in writing to become a Tier 6 Plan Member in lieu of membership in LACERS, on the terms and conditions set forth below and in any ordinance adopted by the City Council to implement this provision, provided that no person shall become a Tier 6 Plan Member until he or she has completed the academy training required by the Airport Department.  A person who does not file an election within the period specified below shall continue as a LACERS member and shall remain a LACERS member if subsequently appointed without a break in Airport Department service to an Airport Department sworn position, or Fire Department sworn position that would otherwise require him or her to become a Tier 6 Plan Member.
 
   All elections made pursuant to this Subdivision (2) must meet the requirements of the ordinance adopted by Council, as authorized by Section 1704, to govern the election, including all related requirements governing service purchases, contributions, and the cost of the election.
 
   For purposes of Sections 1706 and 1708, relating to Tier 6 Disability Pensions and Tier 6 Survivorship Pensions, and Section 1212, relating to the effect of a Department Member's receipt of Worker's Compensation, a Tier 6 Plan Member who transfers under Subdivision (2) of this Section, Section 1704 and the ordinance adopted by the Council as authorized by Section 1704, shall be considered a Department Member as defined in Section 1202(e) during all employment periods for which the member receives Years of Service credit pursuant to Section 1704 and the ordinance adopted by the Council as authorized by Section 1704, notwithstanding that the person was not an actual Tier 6 Plan Member at the time of employment.  The intent of this provision is that the person shall be considered a Department Member at the time of employment for purposes of these sections, so that the amount of any disability or survivorship pension granted pursuant to the provisions of Tier 6 shall be reduced as provided in Section 1212.
 
SECTION HISTORY
 
Added by Charter Amendment G § 1, approved March 8, 2011, effective April 8, 2011.
Amended by:  Charter Amendment SSS §§ 2 – 5, approved November 8, 2016, effective December 15, 2016.