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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Julie L. Jones

Florida Department of Corrections
Julie L. Jones, Secretary

For Immediate Release
May 12, 2000
For More Information
Contact: Public Affairs Office
(850) 488-0420
or Director of Executive Services,
Peggy Ball
(850) 488-7577

DOC Budget:
Frequently Asked Questions

Prepared by Mary Huff (Suncom 278-1275), assistant chief of personnel for recruitment and payroll.

1. Did 6-year vesting pass and what is the effective date?

Yes, effective July 1, 2001, a 6-year vesting requirement shall be implemented for the defined benefit program of the Florida Retirement System. Pursuant thereto: 1. Any member employed in a regularly established position on July 1, 2001, who completes or has completed a total of 6 years of creditable service, shall be considered vested as described in paragraph (a). 2. Any member not employed in a regularly established position on July 1, 2001, shall be deemed vested upon completion of 6 years of creditable service, provided that such member is employed in a covered position for at least 1 work year after July 1, 2001. However, no member shall be required to complete more years of creditable service than would have been required for that member to vest under retirement laws in effect before July 1, 2001.

2. What classes in medical are covered for special risk and what is the effective date?

Effective January 1, 2001, "special risk member" includes any professional health care bargaining unit or non-unit member who is employed by DOC or the Department of Children and Family Services and meets the special criteria set forth in s. 121.0515(2)(f).

The member must be employed in one of the following classes and must spend at least 75 percent of his or her time performing duties which involve contact with patients or inmates in a correctional or forensic facility or institution:

  1. Dietitian (class codes 5203 and 5204).
  2. Public health nutrition consultant (class code 5224).
  3. Psychological specialist (class codes 5230 and 5231).
  4. Psychologist (class code 5234).
  5. Senior psychologist (class codes 5237 and 5238).
  6. Regional mental health consultant (class code 5240).
  7. Psychological Services Director - DCF (class code 5242).
  8. Pharmacist (class codes 5245 and 5246).
  9. Senior pharmacist (class codes 5248 and 5249).
  10. Dentist (class code 5266).
  11. Senior dentist (class code 5269).
  12. Registered nurse (class codes 5290 and 5291).
  13. Senior registered nurse (class codes 5292 and 5293).
  14. Registered nurse specialist (class codes 5294 and 5295).
  15. Clinical associate (class codes 5298 and 5299).
  16. Advanced registered nurse practitioner (class codes 5297 and 5300).
  17. Advanced registered nurse practitioner specialist (class codes 5304 and 5305).
  18. Registered nurse supervisor (class codes 5306 and 5307).
  19. Senior registered nurse supervisor (class codes 5308 and 5309).
  20. Registered nursing consultant (class codes 5312 and 5313).
  21. Quality management program supervisor (class code 5314).
  22. Executive nursing director (class codes 5320 and 5321).
  23. Speech and hearing therapist (class code 5406);
  24. Pharmacy manager (class code 5251).

3. What is the effective date for CPO special risk retirement?

Effective January 1, 2001, "special risk member" includes any member who is employed as a community-based correctional probation officer and meets the special criteria set forth in s. 121.0515(2)(e).

4. Does this include CPO-Institutions?

No, the member must be employed as a community-based correctional probation officer and be certified, or required to be certified, in compliance with s. 943.1395. In addition, the member's primary duties and responsibilities must be the supervised custody, surveillance, control, investigation, and counseling of assigned inmates, probationers, parolees, or community controllees within the community; or the member must be the supervisor of a member or members who have such responsibilities. Administrative support personnel, including, but not limited to, those whose primary duties and responsibilities are in accounting, purchasing, legal services, and personnel management, shall not be included; however, probation and parole circuit and deputy circuit administrators shall participate in the Special Risk Class

5. Are LPNs covered under special risk? What about other "behind-the-fence" staff?

No, only the specified classes listed in #2 above are included for special risk retirement. NOTE: It is DOC's intent to continue to lobby the Legislature for special risk benefits for additional classes.

6. According to the press release, the budget provided for a 2.5 percent pay increase for most employees and all correctional officers and CPOs, effective October 2000. Does this apply to officers who are over the max or will I get a lump sum?

Normally the minimums and maximums are increased by 2.5%. The legislative language states that "it is the intent of the Legislature for all eligible unit and non-unit employees assigned to the Security Services pay plan to receive a competitive pay adjustment of 2.5% on each employee's September 30, 2000, base rate of pay, effective October 1, 2000." The details about the pay instructions will be forthcoming from the Department of Management Services.

7. What is the amount of the pay increase for medical?

The legislative language states that "each employee assigned to the professional health care longevity pay plan shall receive an upward competitive pay adjustment of one level on each employee's anniversary date".

8. How does special risk affect my retirement benefits?

Employees in special risk retirement receive 3% credit for each year of service (regular retirement =1.60%). This additional percentage will increase your retirement benefit using the following formula for calculating your annual benefits. For example:

Years of creditable service X Percentage Value (3%) X Average Final Compensation = Yearly Benefit (opt 1)
      25 years x 3% x $35,000 (highest five years) = $26,250

Special risk retirement requirements:

  • 10 years of special risk service and age 55; or
  • 25 total years of special risk service and age 52 ; or
  • 25 years of special risk service regardless of age; or
  • 30 years of any creditable service

9. Who is eligible for the retroactive special risk credit for the period 9/30/78 through 1/1/93?

Employees who were in a special risk class during this period (correctional officer classes) will be eligible to receive the higher special risk credit retroactively. During this period of time, the special risk percentage value was reduced as follows:

10/1/78 through 12/31/88   2.0%
1/1/89 through 12/31/89 2.2%
1/1/90 through 12/31/90 2.4%
1/1/91 through 12/31/91 2.6%
1/1/92 through 12/31/92 2.8%

Three percent of the member's average final compensation for all creditable years of service after September 30, 1978, and before January 1, 1993, for any special risk member who retires after July 1, 2000, or any member of the special risk administrative support class entitled to retain the special risk normal retirement date who was a member of the special risk class during the time period and who retires after July 1, 2000.

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