State Employees Support Option for Defined Benefit (Pension)

Alaska Legislative Leaders

Legislation proposed in 2021, HB 220, would have given all members in the PERS/TRS system an option to buy back into a Defined Benefit (pension) retirement plan for all TIER IV employees.

If a similar bill is proposed and gains traction in the 33rd Legislature (2023-2024 sessions) public employees hired after June 30, 2006, would be offered a one-time choice to enroll in the Defined Benefit retirement system, at which time the employee’s individual contributions to the Defined Contribution account will be converted.

Other specific details will depend on the bill's sponsor and will of the legislators. Which can be influenced by the voices of the members and employees that care about and would be impacted by this legislation.

ASEA AFSCME Local 52 members have put forth Resolutions at every Convention following 2006, supporting efforts to give employees an option to return to a concrete defined benefit plan. The State of Alaska has struggled with recruitment and retention, especially lately, and offering members an option for a dignified retirement could support efforts to recruit and retain dedicated professionals committed to providing quality public service for Alaskans.

***If you have additional questions or want to ramp up your involvement and contribute to this effort, contact Samantha Harris,, or Alex Baker at the Alaska AFL-CIO,***

Sponsored by

To: Alaska Legislative Leaders
From: [Your Name]

ASEA AFSCME Local 52 members work everywhere Alaska needs us and we keep Alaska running. With more than 8,000 members across the state in the PERS/TRS system, we represent one of the largest factions of public employees in Alaska.

We are proud, dedicated public service workers. It is impossible to summarize or generalize all of our jobs in a sentence or two. But what we can say is that working in public service is in a league of its own. We are in this work because we care about our community, our state, and our cities. We are in this work because we are qualified. But many of us do not stay in this line of work - but it's not because we don't want to.

An option for a dignified retirement would be a game changer for many of us. It seems it would also be prudent for our employers, many of which are struggling to recruit and retain talented, experienced public professionals.

This letter represents our collective will and desire to see the legislature finally take solid action in making this choice and this option a reality for us.

From the undersigned members: