Nearing retirement? Register for March 3 DRS retirement seminar

Open notebook with words "My Plan" at the top and person preparing to write with a pen
The Department of Retirement Systems will be hosting a retirement seminar on Saturday, March 3 in Centralia for plan members who are nearing retirement. Please select the Retirement Planning Seminars link for more information about upcoming seminars and how to register.
 
It’s important that you have a basic understanding of your retirement plan before you attend a seminar. If you would like to learn more about your plan and how it works, please review your plan handbook which can be found on the DRS website – Members page. Employees are also invited to view the DRS webinar schedule and selection of videos available online.

New IRS Withholding Table for 2018

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has updated the income-tax withholding tables for 2018 to reflect changes made by the new tax law. OSD payroll systems have been updated to reflect the new rates for employers to use during the 2018 tax year.  You will see this change on your February paycheck, and you can view the new tax table here https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p15.pdf.

Employees do not need to do anything at this time.  If you are wanting to complete a new W4 form, the IRS has not released a new 2018 W4 form.  You can still complete a 2017 W4 form if you would like to make any changes to your withholdings.

Questions about this new IRS withholding table may be emailed to the Payroll Office at Help-payroll@osd.wednet.edu.

Department of Retirement hosts live webinar January 30

The Department of Retirement Systems Education & Outreach team will host a live webinar covering Public Employee Benefits (PEBB) at retirement on Tuesday, January 30 beginning at 4 p.m.  If you would like to attend, please click on this link to join the meeting about 10-15 minutes prior to the start of the webinar so you can check your connection and sound.  If you have sound or connection problems, please call (360) 664-7005.
The webinar is expected to take a full hour, which may not allow time for questions. If you have questions about the PEBB program, please call 1-800-200-1004 (711 through Washington Relay).
 
The webinar will not be recorded.  If you are unable to attend the webinar, the PEBB website provides an online video library which you can view at your convenience.
 

Department of Retirement Systems offers webinars January 16-18

The Department of Retirement Systems (DRS) Education & Outreach team will provide the following webinars January 16–18:
January 16
  • 8:30 a.m. – Returning to work after retirement
  • 11 a.m. – Getting ready for retirement (within two years)
  • 1 p.m. – Distributions from Plan 3 (PERS, SERS, TRS)

January 17

  • 8:30 a.m. – Plan 2 (PERS, SERS, TRS)
  • 11:30 a.m. – Plan 3 (PERS, SERS, TRS)
  • 3:30 p.m. – Applying for retirement (a tutorial for the online application)

January 18

  • 8:30 a.m. – Benefit payment options
  • 2:30 p.m. – Washington State Deferred Compensation Program
  • 4 p.m. – Plan choice (PERS, SERS, TRS)
Additional webinars are offered on the online  DRS webinar schedule. If you plan to attend a webinar, we recommend you join about 10-15 minutes prior to the start of the webinar so you can check your connection and sound.  If you are having connection or sound problems, please call (360) 664-7005.
 
DRS updates the webinar schedule every 3-4 months.  Select this link if you would like to be notified when the DRS webinar schedule page is updated. If unable to attend any of the webinars listed, many of the topics are covered by viewing an online seminar video.
 
This is also a reminder that some members of PERS, SERS and TRS Plan 2 have an option to transfer to Plan 3 this month (January).  If you have the option to transfer, we encourage you to attend the Plan Choice webinar on Thursday, January 18 at 4 pm.

Learn more about who qualifies to transfer from Plan 2 to Plan 3 on the DRS website.
 
The Department of Retirement Systems Education and Outreach also provides one-on-one assistance at its agency in Tumwater.  Employees may visit the office and meet with a Retirement Specialist anytime during normal business hours.  No appointment is necessary — employees may just walk in.  If unable to visit the office, please call 1-800-547-6657 (the agency Skypes if requested).  If an employee is within a year of retirement, DRS recommends they request an Official Benefit Estimate before they meet with a Specialist.  This can be done online at www.drs.wa.gov/oaa or by phone.

Enrollment in Section 125 Plan is from December 18-31, 2017

unnamedEmployees who want to enroll in the Section 125 Plan may do so from December 18-31. The Section 125 Plan allows employees to deduct the cost of eligible benefits from gross earnings before taxes.

Employees may schedule a short, one-on-one appointment to review all available benefits. Sign up for your enrollment appointment and learn more about available benefits at the American Fidelity benefits website.

 

Annual retirement statements for 2016-17 are available online

Annual retirement statements for the 2016-17 school year are available online for Olympia School District employees.

To view your 2016-17 annual retirement statement, log in to your Online Account on the Department of Retirement Systems (DRS) website. We encourage you to review your annual statement, which shows your service credit and defined benefit contributions.

To view your annual retirement statement:

  • Go to your Online Account
  • Log in if you’re a current user ,or follow the easy sign-up instructions.

If you have questions about your Online Account or do not have access to the Internet, contact DRS at 360-664-7000 or 800-547-6657. You may also email DRS at recep@drs.wa.gov.

September 29 is last day of Open Enrollment

Intersecting street sign that says Open Enrollment

A reminder that Open Enrollment ends on Friday, September 29, 2017.

Be sure to sign on to the online benefit resource portal UPoint on the school district website. The Washington Education Association (WEA) is offering Aetna and UnitedHealthcare medical plans, and there will be one Kaiser Permanente medical plan. Open Enrollment information is posted on the Benefits Web page.

Need help signing up for benefits?

The Payroll department is hosting open labs with staff onsite to assist you with researching and signing up for your benefits. You do not need to preregister for these sessions. The final two Open Labs will take place at the Knox Administrative Center on:

  • September 28: 3-6 p.m. Room 308
  • September 29: 3-6 p.m. Room 308