Human Resources - Employee Handbook

Group Insurance Programs, Retirement and Other Benefits

Useful HR Benefits Web Sites

Employee Assistance Program
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/benefits/eap.php

Employee Retirement System (ERS)
http://www.ers.state.tx.us

FMLA
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/employeehandbook/leavebenefits.php#fmla

Forms
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/generalforms.php#benefits

Insurance Benefits
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/benefits/insuranceprograms.php

Long-Term Disability Insurance
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/benefits/documents/UNUM.pdf

Retirement Benefits
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/benefits/retirement.php

Sick Leave Pool
http://www.austincc.edu/hr/employeehandbook/leavebenefits.php#sickleave

Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS)
http://www.trs.state.tx.us

Workers’ Compensation
http://www.austincc.edu/ehs/Insurance.php

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Group Insurance Programs

ACC offers eligible staffing table employees (regular employees who are funded in the ACC Budget and qualified for benefits, i.e., Non-Exempt (Classified), Exempt (Professional-Technical), full-time faculty, and administrators’ medical, dental, term life, accidental death and dismemberment, and long-term disability insurance.

The insurance plans with the Employees Retirement System (ERS) are offered under a state-mandated plan referred to as the Group Benefits Plan (GBP). Employees may choose to decline all insurance coverages with ERS or the employee may decline only Medical Coverage while Optional Coverage will begin immediately for the employee and at the first of the following month for any dependents. New employees must attend a Human Resources Orientation program where they may select insurance coverages for themselves and eligible dependents effective on the first of the following month following any state-mandated delays.

Staffing Table (Full Time)
To be eligible for insurance benefits with ERS funded by the State of Texas, an employee must:

  • be employed Full-Time (40 hours per week),
  • be hired for a term of four and one-half months or longer (during the academic year), and
  • occupy a staffing table position (adjunct and hourly employees are not ACC Staffing Table employees).

Staffing Table (Part Time)
To be eligible for “reduced” insurance premiums funded by the State of Texas, an employee must:

  • be employed 20-39 hours per week,
  • be hired for a term of four and one-half months or longer (during the academic year), and
  • occupy a staffing table position (i.e., adjunct and hourly employees are not Staffing Table employees).

The following is general information about your insurance benefits. Refer to your ERS insurance booklets, contact ERS online at http://www.ers.state.tx.us or contact your ACC Benefits Supervisor for a more detailed explanation.

Medical Insurance

ACC offers all benefits eligible employees comprehensive health and prescription drug benefits which includes a $5,000 basic term life insurance policy after a 90 day (State mandated) waiting period. You may enroll your eligible dependents in available health coverage without restrictions when you enroll as a new employee and pay the premiums. Coverage commences on the first of the following month after 90 days of employment. You may decline health coverage, however, if you wish to enroll in Health Select after your period of eligibility, Evidence of Insurability (EOI) is required and acceptance is not guaranteed.

HIPAA: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996

The HIPAA privacy law sets limits on how health providers and plans may use individually identifiable health information. Under the HIPAA law, health providers and plans may only use individual health information for necessary treatment, payment, or healthcare operations without obtaining your permission. Personal Health Information (PHI) may generally not be used for purposes “not related” to health care. The release of PHI must be limited to the minimum necessary designated for the purpose of the disclosure.

ACC abides by the HIPAA law both as an organization, a business entity and an educational institution through ERS and the ACC HIPAA Task Force. Privacy of Personal Health Information (PHI) as an employee requires that the ACC employee retain all PHI. PHI is defined as Health Information from any provider, hospital, doctor, etc. or any document (application, etc.) having such personal health information displayed. As an employee, please contact the insurance company, medical provider or hospital for any questions on your PHI, health applications, billings, etc. Please refrain from sending any Personal Health Information documents to ACC in the mail, e-mail, etc. As a student, applicable HIPAA and Privacy training will occur at the classroom level.

Optional Insurance Available through ERS by Employee Selection:

The following optional coverages are available for employees to purchase through monthly payroll deductions. Some optional coverages for full-time employees are funded by ACC. All optional coverages for part-time employees are self-selected and self funded.

Dental Insurance:

ACC provides dental insurance for all eligible full-time employees through ERS. Employees may enroll themselves and eligible dependents in either of the following plans:

  • Humana DHMO
  • Dental Choice Plan

Dental insurance is available immediately for the employee at date of hire and effective on the first of the following month for enrolled dependents.

Part-time employees (20-39 hours per month) are required to fund all dental premiums monthly.

Life Insurance (Term Life)

ACC provides term life insurance (Term Life) for full-time employees (40 hours per week) for one times annual salary. Part-time employees (20-39 hours per week) can purchase life insurance at their own cost. An employee can voluntarily purchase up to 4X his or her annual salary at the employee’s cost, Evidence of Insurability (EOI) may apply. The life insurance policy includes an accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) clause that doubles the amount your beneficiary will receive in the event of accidental death or loss of limb. Any future changes may require Evidence of Insurability.

These policies are effective during employment only; upon termination these policies may be converted to a personal policy once the employee terminates.

Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance:

ACC provides Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) coverage in the amount of $55,000 for all eligible full-time employees. If you sustain an accidental bodily injury that results in death within 180 days of the accident or if you suffer the loss of a foot, hand, or eye, insurance benefits will be payable to you or your beneficiary. You can increase AD&D coverage to a maximum of $200,000 for yourself and your family at your expense. Evidence of Insurability (EOI) may be required.

Part-time employees (20-39 hours per month) are required to fund all AD&D premiums for the employee and dependents.

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Long-term Disability Insurance (LTD)

Full Time Employees (40 per week)

ACC provides Long Term Disability coverage through UNUM.  This coverage is a paid benefit provided to all Full-Time Employees.  

Full-Time employees may choose to purchase LTD coverage through the benefits package offered through the Employees Retirement System of Texas in lieu of the UNUM coverage.   Employees may not opt for both plans.

Part Time Employees (less than 40 hours per week) may purchase Long Term Disability coverage through the Employees Retirement System of Texas.  Insurance Premiums for Long Term Disability through the Employees Retirement System of Texas Group Benefits Program is dependent of employee’s monthly salary.

Long Term Disability protects employees due to a “loss of income due to a disability” should an employee become totally disabled at any time while employed by ACC.  Benefits will become payable to an employee after the employee has become certified as totally disabled; and complete the waiting period of your sick leave, extended sick leave, and sick leave pool, or 90 consecutive days, whichever is greater.  Additional information is located at:

Short-term Disability Insurance (STD)

Employees may choose to purchase short-term disability insurance through ERS. The cost is age and salary dependent and provides protection against the loss of income should the employee become temporarily disabled for less than (5) five months. The maximum monthly benefit payable is 66% of an employee’s salary (up to $10,000). Maximum of $6,600 per month payout for up to five months after a thirty-day (30) elimination period. STD applications are available at the Employees Retirement System (ERS) website http://www.ers.state.tx.us  and must be submitted directly to the company by the employee.

Dependent Life Insurance

Employees may choose to purchase dependent life insurance through ERS. The cost is minimal and covers spouses and eligible children up to age 25. The benefit payable is $5,000 per covered dependent and the plan includes accidental death and dismemberment benefit.

Optional Life Insurance (2X, 3X, 4X)

Employees may choose to purchase additional life insurance up to a maximum of four times their annual salary through ERS. Evidence of Insurability (EOI) will be required after the initial enrollment period at ACC Orientation. EOI applications are available on the ERS Website www.ers.state.tx.us and must be submitted directly to the company by the employee.

Insurance Deductions (Monthly Paycheck)

An employee who chooses any optional insurance coverage will have monthly premiums deducted from his or her next available paycheck. Employees paid bi-weekly will have one-half of the premiums deducted from each bi-weekly check. Employees paid monthly will have the full premium deducted from each check. Adjustments for missed deductions will be made accordingly.

Employees (Less than 12 months)

Employees (particularly full-time faculty on less than twelve month contracts) who do not receive paychecks during the summer have an additional premium deduction   taken    out of their paycheck each month during their employment period. This “accelerated”          deduction pays for coverage over the summer months. Selected insurance coverage       continues until August 31.

Employees on LWOP or Unpaid Status

An employee on a LWOP or unpaid status needs to insure that all ERS insurance premiums are paid to ERS in a timely manner. Failure to keep insurance premiums current will result in a cancellation of all policies for non-sufficient funds (NSF).

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Reimbursement Accounts (TEXFLEX)

Dependent Care Reimbursement Account (DCRA)

The TEXFLEX plan allows an employee to set aside money from his or her salary on a    pre-tax basis to pay for eligible day care and health care expenses.

Employee’s can set up a FSA-Health Account or a FSA-Day Care Account.  Both accounts allow employees to claim eligible health or day care expenses by requesting reimbursement from the pre-tax money that was contributed to the TexFlex account. Employee’s can sign up for either of these accounts upon hire or each Summer Enrollment Insurance period.

Employee’s can see a complete list of eligible and ineligible TexFlex expenses at            http://www.ers.state.tx.us/Employees/Programs/TexFlex/ .

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Other Employee Benefits

COBRA (Loss or Reduction of Job Status):

If an employee loses their eligibility for medical and dental coverage from ACC due to termination of employment or a reduction of work hours, whether voluntary or involuntary (except for gross misconduct), the employee will be automatically offered a continued “self payment” medical and dental coverage under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) through Employee Retirement System (ERS). The normal continuation period is for 18 months at the group rate. (Please consult with ERS for any dependent or disability questions.) The employee must formally elect COBRA coverage within 60 days of the “Date of Notice” on the Termination COBRA Election form from ERS. The employee is responsible for paying all premiums directly to ERS in a timely manner. ERS will bill the employee directly and the employee is responsible for making payments directly to ERS. If the former employee is covered under another group plan, COBRA may not be available. Please consult with ERS.

      Upon notice of intent to terminate from ACC, the employee’s immediate supervisor should direct the employee to contact the Office of Human Resources, Benefits Section for any questions related to COBRA.

  • When the employee terminates employment and insurance coverage, ERS will provide        employees with a COBRA Election Form and COBRA Notification (PDF). 
  • Employees and/or dependents must formally elect continuation coverage on the form         provided and submit the appropriate premium payment within 105 days of the date coverage terminated or the date of notice, whichever is later. Failure to do so will result in  cancellation of the health and/or dental coverage.
  • Each covered participant has the right to elect continuation coverage independently.           Employees and dependents will not have coverage after the date coverage terminated   until the employee formally elects continuation coverage and pay all premiums due. Insurance coverage will be retroactive to the first day of the month following the date coverage terminated.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP):

ACC offers an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) as a Short Term transition counseling program to help employees, and their family members, cope with a wide range of personal and professional problems that may adversely affect daily work performance at ACC. The EAP provides assessment, combined with short-term counseling, for employees and their families in many areas including, but not limited to, marital and relationship issues, parenting issues, substance abuse, legal and financial counseling. The EAP also provides counseling and coaching regarding workplace issues such as job-related stress, burnout and motivation issues, on-the-job conflicts, harassment or other personal problems that affect work performance. Employees who use the EAP as a resource to resolve work-related or job performance problems are not required to use accrued leave for appointments that occur during regularly scheduled work hours.

Employees who experience work-related performance problems may be required to attend EAP as a condition of continued ACC employment. The employee will be required to provide EAP notification that the supervisor can be given the following information: 1) confirmation that the employee has made an appointment; 2) confirmation that the employee is in attendance; and 3) confirmation that the employee has completed the recommended counseling. The supervisor must document the required attendance and completion of counseling as a part of the performance management document. If the employee refuses to attend EAP as a mandatory requirement, disciplinary action may be taken, up to and including termination, depending upon the severity of the performance problem.

Any employee contact with the EAP is strictly confidential. The supervisor, co-workers or family will not receive any indication of the employee’s personal use of the EAP program (unless the employee volunteers the information). This benefit has been prepaid each fiscal year by ACC. Employees (or the family member) should contact EAP directly to schedule an appointment.

Employees who attend EAP, either voluntarily or at the direction of the Supervisor, may attend during work hours with the approval of the Supervisor.  The employee may use sick leave or administrative leave.  If it is impossible to schedule an appointment during the work day, the Supervisor may approve overtime for non-exempt employees.  If the employee attends EAP in the evening hours, no leave needs to be used.

EAP is not a substitute for long-term medical or psychological counseling under any employer health plan.

Environmental Health and Safety and Insurance Office:

The Environmental Health and Safety and Insurance Office is responsible for the development, implementation, and management of life safety, environmental health and safety, and property/casualty/liability insurance placement at ACC. Property and casualty claims are reported, monitored, and managed through this department. Workplace safety including inspections, training, and federal and state regulation compliance are initiated through this office. The Environmental Health and Safety and Insurance Office also is responsible for any student insurance such as student accident, student travel coverage, and student/faculty professional liability. Additional information is located at the ACC web site: http://www.austincc.edu/ehs/.

Employee Exemption Tuition Vouchers:

After completing 180 days of employment, employees are eligible for tuition exemption vouchers.

Tuition Exemption Vouchers are available online each year in July. Full-time employees receive three (3) tuition vouchers. Part-time staffing table employees receive two (2) tuition vouchers. Adjunct Faculty must be employed for six semesters before being eligible for two (2) tuition vouchers.  Tuition Exemption Vouchers can be used for college-credit, non-credit, or continuing education courses at ACC only. These courses are to be taken outside normal working hours unless they are job related and the immediate supervisor has approved arrangements during the normal work day.

Tuition Exemption Voucher information is located on the HR web site at http://www.austincc.edu/hr/records/tuitionvouchers.php.

Educational Recognition Award:

Non-faculty employees who have held a staffing table position for at least 12 consecutive months are eligible to receive for the Educational Recognition Award upon earning an Associate’s degree, Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree, Doctoral degree, or a college credit workforce technical certificate.  The technical certificate must be directly related to the employee’s position.  The degree must be from an accredited institution of higher education.

Employees must be in good standing and not on probation to be eligible for the award. See Administrative Rule 6.05.001, Educational Incentive, http://www.austincc.edu/admrule/6.09.006.htm.Hourly employees are not eligible for the Educational Recognition Award.

Library Card:

All ACC employees have library borrowing privileges. Employees on or off campus may check the library catalog at http://library.austincc.edu. Employees who do not have convenient access to a campus library may request by phone or email that material be sent to them via intercampus mail. In addition, ACC staffing table employees and adjunct faculty may participate in the TexShare borrower card program by obtaining a Borrower card at one of the ACC campus libraries. This card, along with picture identification, entitles the employee to borrow books at all participating libraries. Some of the area libraries that participate in the TexShare program are the University of Texas, Texas State University, Austin Public Library, and Round Rock Public Library. Check with ACC Library Services for a complete listing of participating libraries or more information on services available to employees.

Tax Sheltered Annuities (TSA):

All ACC employees may participate in the ACC Tax Sheltered Annuity Program. The tax-sheltered annuity is a deferred-voluntary retirement tax arrangement expressly granted by Congress in IRS Code section 403(b). Under this provision, the amount deposited into the TSA is not taxed as current income. Taxes on earnings and deductions are deferred until a later date, usually retirement. The College maintains a list of authorized TSA companies (contact HR Benefits, 223-7617).

To start a TSA deduction, employees need to complete and submit to HR Benefits the following:

  • ACC Salary Reduction Agreement
  • Copy of the company’s application; original application must be submitted directly to the company by the employee.

Contributions to a TSA can be stopped at any time with written notice (signed document). Tax consequences and penalties may arise for early withdrawals prior to age 59½. Contact HR Benefits, 223-7617, for further information.

457 Deferred Compensation Plan (457 Plan):

All ACC employees may participate in the 457 Deferred Compensation Plan. This program is subject to all applicable provisions of Section 457 of the Internal Revenue Code.

A 457 Deferred Compensation Plan is an agreement an employee executes with ACC to defer payment of earnings (and taxes) from the employees’ monthly salary by a stated percentage or exact amount. By selecting the 457 Plan, the employee is allowed to postpone payment of taxes on these monthly deductions and any gain on the investment until a later date.

Required forms to establish a 457 Plan deduction include:

  • ACC Salary Reduction Agreement
  • Copy of Carrier Application/Contract (original must be submitted to the company by the employee).

Contributions to a 457 Deferred Compensation Plan can be stopped at any time by notifying HR Benefits in writing. Withdrawals at or after age 59 ½ of age are not penalized. There is no penalty for withdrawals before age 59 ½ under the following circumstances:

  • Termination of employment
  • Death
  • Total disability
  • Early retirement at age 55; or
  • The withdrawal of an amount necessary to meet emergency expenses (catastrophic clause), if provided by the company contract.

Workers' Compensation:

All ACC employees are covered under provisions of the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act. Any accident or illness caused while performing services for the College must be filed under Workers’ Compensation.

      In the event of an accident or injury that occurs while on the job, do the following:

  1. Immediately report any accident or injury to your supervisor whether or not you require medical attention.
  2. Contact the Campus Police Dispatch at “222” or 223-7999 (non-Campus phone). The Police Officer will arrange for medical assistance, if needed, and complete an “Incident Report.”
  3. Contact the ACC Environmental Health Safety and Insurance Office, 223-1015 and notify them of the time, date and nature of the accident or injury.
  4. If the ACC Environmental Health Safety and Insurance Office is closed, contact them within 24 hours or the next business day.

In the event of a serious accident or injury, seek immediate medical attention FIRST and then contact the ACC Environmental Health Safety and Insurance Office within 24 hours.

Workers’ Comp Claims:
All filed Workers’ Comp claims are thoroughly reviewed and investigated. Fraudulent claims are grounds for termination. Compensation for lost wages for work-related accidents will be covered under Texas Workers’ Comp program. Claims for all non-work related injuries should be filed on personal health insurance.

The Workers’ Compensation procedures and/or Injury Report are located on the  Environmental Health and Safety and Insurance Office web site at   http://www.austincc.edu/ehs/Insurance .

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Retirement Programs (Staffing Table)

Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS)

In 1981, The ACC Board of Trustees decided that ACC employees would not participate in Social Security.  Thus, ACC participates in the Texas Retirement System.

TRS is a Texas State 401 (a)defined benefit plan. The TRS plan provides benefits for service longevity based upon years and salary or a disability retirement (upon approval).   Retirement benefits are based on a formula established by the Texas State Legislature that   uses the number of years of service and the salary earned. More information and a    retirement estimate calculator are available at www.trs.state.tx.us.

ACC Retirement Program / TRS Only
Employee Contribution: 6.4% of gross salary
ACC Contribution: 6.0% of gross salary
Vesting of Benefits: 5 years
Return of Deposits: Employees may apply for a return of their contributions with interest (Escheat) after they have permanently terminated employment covered by any TRS agency. At separation, terminated employees may choose to 1) have a direct rollover of contributions   to any IRS qualified plan (IRA, Keogh, 457 Deferred Comp, etc.) or any other employer plan, or 2) elect to have distribution made directly to them. With either withdrawal option,   terminated employees will lose credit years of TRS service and the amount contributed  (matched-6.0%) by the State. It is always important to consult a tax attorney or financial  planner about any penalties or tax consequences that may be incurred when you withdraw retirement funds prior to age 70 ½. The form to request a refund is called the TRS 6 and is available from TRS at www.trs.state.tx.us or the HR Benefits Office.

Upon initial employment, all ACC full-time (40 hours per week)/ part-time (20-39 hours per week) Staffing Table employees (as defined by the TRS) are automatically enrolled in TRS Full-time Faculty and administrators are subsequently eligible to enroll in the Optional Retirement Program.

Retirement Age (TRS)
Normal retirement age is age 65 with at least five years of service or qualification by the “Rule of 80,” where an employee’s age and years of TRS Service add up to 80.  For employees starting TRS membership on or after September 1, 2007, they must be at least 60 years old and meet the rule of 80 in order to qualify for an unreduced benefit.  Early-age retirement (reduced benefits) can be applied for after at age 55 with at least 5 years of service, or when a member has 30 years of service yet does not meet the “Rule of 80”.  Effective September 1, 1997, the “Rule of 80” allows a benefits eligible employee, to be eligible for Employee Retirement System (ERS) health insurance funded by the State of Texas.  There is a minimum 10-year service requirement with the agency of not less than ten (10) years with a GBP participating agency or institution to be eligible for ERS retiree insurance. Please consult ERS web site at www.ers.state.tx.us for ERS retirement qualifications.

You may qualify for early TRS retirement if you meet the following criteria:

  • Age 55 with at least 5 years of service OR
  • Any age below 50 with 30 years of service.

Please check the TRS web site at www.trs.state.tx.usor call 542-6400 for additional retirement information. 

Proportional and Transfer Credit (TRS)
Eligible members of TRS or ERS may transfer ERS or TRS service credited under other Texas State agencies (if allowed by the individual State plan) to the respective retirement agency. Conversely, members of other State Retirement plans may transfer TRS service to ERS. Please consult your retirement agency(s) for the proper time to transfer within 36 months of retirement. The transfer of service takes place only at the date a member retires. Members who have already retired under either system (ERS or TRS) are not eligible to transfer service credit. Please consult the ERS web site for the transfer qualifications.

Optional Retirement Program (ORP) for Full-Time Faculty and Administrators Only:

The Optional Retirement Program is an individualized Texas State retirement plan in which each participant (100% full-time faculty or institution administrators only) selects retirement investments through various ACC authorized companies offering ORP investment products. The ORP is a defined contribution plan. The retirement benefit is based on the actual amount contributed during employment and any returns on investment (ROI) at the time of retirement. Specific retirement benefits under ORP vary by company and are subject to individual contract provisions and federal tax law. Upon initial employment, a full-time faculty member or administrator is automatically eligible to be enrolled in TRS and failing to make an initial ORP selection will be enrolled in TRS. Eligible ORP employees are given 90 days from the date of TRS qualification to make a lifetime choice to relinquish membership in the TRS and to become a participant in the ORP.

            As outlined in the Rules and Regulations of the Administrative Council of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, www.thecb.state.tx.us, the following positions at ACC meet eligibility standards for participation in the ORP: Faculty, Librarians, Deans, Counselors, President, Executive Vice Presidents, Vice-Presidents, Associate Vice Presidents, Provosts, Assistant to the President, Executive Assistant, and eligible Directors. Employment at an ISD under TRS will revert any ORP member to a TRS status for life.

Optional Retirement Program (ORP)

Employee Contribution: 6.65% of gross salary
Employer Contribution: 6.0%-8.5% of gross salary (depending upon ORP enrollment date)
Fees: Dependent upon plan
Vesting of Benefits: 1 year and 1 day into the next academic semester
Return of Deposits: Employees who terminate and are not vested may withdraw only their funds. Employer contributions will be returned to the employer. Employees who are vested and terminate employment and do not anticipate future employment with a public institution of higher education may request a “vesting letter” from the Office of Human Resources. This will  allow the employee to withdraw funds under various options; however, it is important to  inquire about penalties that may be incurred should withdrawal of ORP funds occur prior to age 59½.

ACCMPP (Austin Community College Money Purchase Plan) Distribution

Since Austin Community College does not participate in Social Security, the College was required by the Omnibus Revenue Reconciliation Act of 1990 (commonly referred to as OBRA) to enroll all employees in a qualified retirement plan effective January 1, 1992. To comply with the law, ACC implemented the ACC Money Purchase Plan (ACCMPP) for ALL adjunct faculty, hourly and non-staffing table employees.  This retirement plan will provide the employee or the employee’s beneficiary with a fully vested cash settlement or an annuity income when the employee decides to permanently terminate employment with the College.

Employees that are exempt from contributing to the Money Purchase Plan include those employees that are currently contributing to TRS or to an ORP, employees that are receiving retirement benefits from either TRS or ORP and full-time ACC students who work for the College.  If an employee terminates employment with ACC and would like the money that they contributed to the Money Purchase Plan, they must fill out a Distribution Election form, located on the HR forms website (http://www.austincc.edu/hr/generalforms.php#benefits), requesting a refund.     

Distribution of the ACCMPP retirement plan funds is the responsibility of the employee. Employees may apply for withdrawal of these funds upon termination from ACC.  More information can be found on the HR Benefits page located at http://www.austincc.edu/hr/benefits/accmpp.php or you may contact TPA at www.mnmpensions.com or by calling 1-800-580-2176.

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ACC Retiree Benefits

In 1981, The ACC Board of Trustees decided that ACC employees would not participate in Social Security.

An ACC qualified retiree is an employee who retires from ACC following tenure of at least 10 years of service.

A TRS retiree is an employee who retires with qualified TRS time through ACC as a retiring agency. This employee may have worked at ACC for tenure, but is not qualified under ERS Retirement rules for health insurance benefits.

An ERS retiree is an employee who retires with qualified ERS State time through ACC as a retiring agency. This employee may have worked (or retired and is working) at ACC for a period of time, but retires under ERS and does not qualify for TRS.

An “other agency retiree” is a former employee (regardless of tenure) who separates from ACC prior to official retirement (for any reason) and then elects to retire under ERS (if TRS qualified) through ACC for State-paid health insurance benefits.

Normal service retirement age under TRS is 65 or the “Rule of 80.” You may qualify for an unreduced retirement if you meet the following criteria:

  • Age 65 with at least 5 years of service OR
  • Age plus years of service equals 80 

For employees starting TRS membership on or after September 1, 2007, they must be at least 60 years old and meet the Rule of 80 in order to qualify for an unreduced retirement benefit. 

Employees retiring under ORP must meet the same criteria as employees retiring under TRS in order to be eligible and must be covered with ERS insurance (as per THECB).

In accordance with Senate Bill 1102 (SB 1102), effective September 1, 1997, an employee will be eligible for ERS retiree insurance provided that the ACC employee has at least 10 years of service credit in a benefits eligible position with an agency or institution that participates in the Group Benefit Program (GBP).

Eligibility for Retiree Insurance

You will be eligible to receive health insurance upon retirement if you have 10 years of established service credit and 1) meet the Rule of 80, or 2) attain age 65. In either case, you will not have a waiting period on your health insurance if you retire directly from ACC employment and currently have health insurance through GBP. If you do not retire directly from employment but gain retirement eligibility later, you will be eligible for health insurance after a 90-day waiting period, but no evidence of insurability (proof of good health) will be required.

Currently, ACC retirees receive the following insurance benefits:

Retiree Medical Insurance

Retirees may enroll in any of the ERS medical plans available to active ACC employees through ERS. There is an annual enrollment period when changes can be made (July/Aug) through ERS. Retirees are notified by ERS of enrollment periods and any changes in the GBP plans. Enrollment and changes to enrollment is done online at www.ers.state.tx.us. Barring any legislative changes, when you retire, the State will pay the same health premium for you and your dependents as it does for active employees. If you are employed part-time when you retire, you will receive the part-time contribution (50 percent) for your retiree health insurance premium. Please consult the ERS web site for retiree costs.

Retiree Dental Insurance

ACC qualified retirees may enroll in any of the dental programs available to active ACC employees. There is an annual enrollment period when changes can be made (July/Aug).   Retirees are notified by ERS of any changes in the dental plans and of enrollment times. ACC currently reimburses ACC qualified retirees who worked in a full-time status for the three months immediate preceding retirement for the cost of the retiree’s dental premium quarterly.

Retiree Basic Life Insurance

Retirees receive $2,500 of Basic Term Life coverage. This is included in the retiree health plan and does not include an accidental death and disability clause.

Retiree Life Insurance Options (Self Paid)

Retirees are eligible for three levels of Optional Life Insurance:

  • Option I (1x the pre-retirement annualized salary),
  • Option II (2x the pre-retirement annualized salary), or
  • $10,000 worth of coverage

If an employee has Option II, III or IV Life Insurance at the time of retirement, he or she is eligible to elect any of the three options available to retirees. If an employee has Option I at the time of retirement, he or she can elect to keep Option I or drop down to the $10,000 worth of coverage. Employees who do not have Optional Life Insurance at the time of retirement are limited to only the $10,000 option. For any retiree, Optional Life Insurance can be waived at the time of retirement.

Dependent Life Insurance (Self Paid)

A retiree may retain Dependent Term Insurance coverage in the amount of $2,500 for their spouse and $2,500 for each dependent child.

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Summary of Full-Time and Part-Time Employee Benefits

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