News & Events

The Recent Supreme Court Decision on Pensions. What Does It Mean to You?

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On March 4, the California Supreme Court upheld a decision by former Governor Jerry Brown and the legislature to end the practice of allowing public employees to purchase up to five years of service credit, or airtime.

The provision to end airtime was part of Governor Brown’s pension reform package, the Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act (PEPRA), that took effect in January 2013.

CalPERS stopped offering airtime when the law went into effect six years ago.

“The decision does not change how we administer benefits on behalf of our 1.9 million members and the nearly 3,000 public agencies that contract with us. CalPERS has not offered air time since the Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act took effect in January 2013.  Our mission remains what it has always been: to protect defined benefit plans and provide retirement security to California’s public employees, their beneficiaries, and retirees.”

CalPERS CEO, Marcie Frost

How Does This Decision Affect CalPERS Members?

The ruling has no impact on our members, whether you’re retired or whether you’re still working.

If you purchased airtime before PEPRA took effect in 2013, it has no impact on you.

However, if you still are interested in buying service credit, we provide many types to eligible members, including:

  • leave of absence
  • military
  • redeposit of withdrawn contributions
  • service prior to membership

To learn about your possible service credit options, visit our Service Credit webpage.