Napa Valley USD Saves Millions with PARS Early Retirement Incentive

Categories: California Developments,Early Retirement Incentives,PARS In the News
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Napa Valley Register by Noel Brinkerhoff,  February 7, 2017

Faced with declining enrollments and burgeoning budget deficits, the Napa Valley Unified School District has encouraged more than 60 of its employees — mostly teachers — to retire early to save it millions of dollars in salary and benefits.

In December, the district contracted with Public Agency Retirement Services (PARS) to devise an incentive program for older teachers and other employees to retire at the end of the school year.

The plan offered teachers 55 years and older with five or more years of service (or age 50 with 30 years of service) an annuity equivalent to 70 percent of their yearly salaries if they filed for retirement, effective June 30. This annuity is in addition to their regular retirement payment.

The same incentive was offered to management personnel of similar age and service as teachers. Their average salary is $134,844. However, the district chose to use a salary cap of $97,838 to determine their annuity, which averages out to $68,486 for management.

The PARS program convinced a total of 66 district employees, out of 228 who were eligible for it, to take the money and retire. Of the 66 workers, 52 are teachers.

Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Alejandro Hogan estimated the retirements would save NVUSD nearly $3 million in salaries and benefits next year — and $14.5 million over five years.

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