- Clerk of Courts and Comptroller Pam Childers has reviewed the much publicized 401(a) annuity program offered to the county’s senior management staff and determined the county has been using an incorrect formula to determine its contributions to the plan since 2011.
In a phone interview, Childers hesitated to call the contribution rates used–that rose to 29.01% for senior managers and 49.18% for Commissioner Robert Bender, the only elected official in the 401(a) plan last year–a mistake.
She said the 401(a) contract was vague regarding how to compute the rate, and the plan had so few participants – primarily HR directors – that the miscalculation escaped notice until last year when Bender and several senior managers signed up for the program.
The county should have backed out of the Unfunded Actuarial Liability (UAL) component of the Florida Retirement System rates to determine the rate used for 401(a) plan,
Childers has notified the county of what she has calculated as the correct contribution rates that will go into effect on July 1:
Although she and her staff have been researching the 401(a) rates for year, Childers said she had not mentioned her concerns to the commissioners about 401(a) but did tell County Administrator Janice Gilley – but gave her no specific details. The Comptroller waited until the June 3 meeting because she wasn’t sure what would be discussed.
Childers also said she had not talked with the HR Director Jana Still.
County Attorney Alison Rogers told Inweekly she was caught off guard by Childers’ memo. Childers’ item wasn’t on the agenda last Friday.
Rogers has talked with Childers’ in-house attorney, Codey Leigh, for several months and no mention was made about possible problems with the contribution rates.
“I did talk with Pam on Friday and she mentioned about talking with Cody about the rates, but she gave me no specifics,” said Rogers.