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Office of the Chancellor

Phased Retirement Program Now Available at UC Merced

April 12, 2012

The University is implementing a new program, the Phased Retirement Program, to enable eligible Career Staff members (except Senior Management Group) to voluntarily reduce their working time and corresponding pay in exchange for a lump sum incentive upon retirement at the end of participation. The intent of the program is to help eligible employees who are 55 or older transition into retirement and allow for longer-term planning for employees, their families and the departments they work in. The reduction also helps departments achieve temporary salary savings during this period of budgetary shortfall.

The program runs through December 31, 2014.

Departments have the option to implement or not implement the Phased Retirement Program. In departments that choose to participate, an employee may request the department head's approval to voluntarily reduce working time, within program limits, from a minimum of 120 days to up to a maximum of 3 years. In exchange, participants will receive a lump sum payment recouping part of their salary reduction upon retirement at the end of participation and some other advantages. Department Head approval will be required for employee participation in the program.

For exclusively represented employees, participation is subject to collective bargaining. These employees should check with Human Resources to determine their eligibility to participate in the program. As of this posting only non-represented employees are currently eligible.

A copy of the Program provisions, Contract form, Frequently Asked Questions, and Department instructions are available online at http://hr.ucmerced.edu/benefits/uc-retirement-system/phased-retirement-program

As you will see from the program materials, the University has provided flexibility in the design of the program. This will give departments latitude to implement it most effectively within the context of their missions, operational needs, service requirements, and budgets. It will be important that departments evaluate their priorities and adjust workloads to ensure that functional objectives continue to be met. Potential participants are strongly encouraged to review the program materials carefully.

Questions concerning program implementation can be directed to Janis Patten, Human Resources, (209) 228-4163.