Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 1337, the TMRS bill, on June 14, 2019. With his signature, the TMRS Act is officially amended to include all of the provisions approved by the TMRS Board at their December 2018 meeting. The bill will go into effect on January 1, 2020. TMRS would again like to thank Senator Joan Huffman and Representative Dan Flynn for sponsoring the legislation and for their hard work to ensure passage. For details and background, see the Texas Legislature web page and the TMRS Legislative News page.
TMRS Executive Director to Retire
TMRS' Executive Director will retire in May 2020. The TMRS Board of Trustees is beginning a search for a new Executive Director. See details in the press release.
Actuarial Valuation Available
The TMRS Board of Trustees approved the System’s Actuarial Valuation for the year ending December 31, 2018. The complete valuation, which is now available to download, contains rate information for cities for the year beginning January 1, 2020. Individual city rate letters will be available in early June.
May Board Meeting
The TMRS Board of Trustees will meet in our Austin office (1200 N. Interstate 35) on Thursday, May 30, at 1:30 p.m. and in a joint meeting with the Advisory Committee on Benefit Design on Friday, May 31, at 8:00 a.m. Presentations to the Board are posted under the Agendas and Minutes tab after each Board Meeting.
The TMRS Bill Passed May 21
Texas Senate gave final approval to Senate Bill 1337, which will improve the administration and operations of TMRS. The bill was sent to the Governor May 25, and if approved, would not take effect until January 1, 2020. TMRS would like to thank Senator Joan Huffman and Representative Dan Flynn for sponsoring this legislation and for their support of TMRS. For details and background, see the Texas Legislature web page and the TMRS Legislative News page.
TMRS Bill Passes
Yesterday the Texas Senate gave final approval to Senate Bill 1337, which will improve the administration and operations of TMRS.
The bill will now be forwarded to the Governor for his approval.
Details about the bill may be found on the Texas Legislature website. Stay tuned to TMRS’ Legislative News page for more information.
TMRS would like to thank Senator Joan Huffman and Representative Dan Flynn for sponsoring this legislation and for their support of TMRS.
Senate Confirmation of Board Members
On May 2, the Texas Senate confirmed the appointment of Jesus A. Garza and the reappointment of Jim Parrish to the TMRS Board of Trustees.
Refunding Your TMRS Account
If you have stopped working for a TMRS city and are considering withdrawing your TMRS contributions, there are some important points to consider. This video explains details about taxation, leaving your money in TMRS, returning to employment with another TMRS city, combining credit with other Systems, how to receive your refund, and other matters.
Update on TMRS Legislation
Senate Bill 1337 (Huffman) was passed by the House of Representatives today. The bill will now be returned to the Senate for concurrence. The latest version of the bill can be tracked on Texas Legislature Online.
Join Our Social Networks
TMRS is expanding our social media outreach with regular posts on helpful TMRS information and news. Learn about benefits, retirement processes, and TMRS events on Facebook.
Follow our training journey across Texas on Instagram. Read executive news about plan design, investments, and Board activities on LinkedIn. Be a part of our online community!
Investments and Interest Credits
At its March meeting, the TMRS Board of Trustees approved a -3.08% interest credit to the Benefit Accumulation Fund (BAF) for the year ending December 31, 2018, reflecting losses in the TMRS investment portfolio. Because TMRS uses an asset smoothing methodology that recognizes investment gains and losses over a 10-year period, this BAF interest credit resulted in an actuarial (smoothed) return of 6.06% for the year due to the partial recognition of deferred losses. The actuarially assumed annual return for the TMRS fund is 6.75%. City contribution rates are estimated to increase on average (will vary by individual city) by approximately 0.18% due to investment performance. Other actuarial experience that is being analyzed in the actuarial valuation currently underway will also affect required 2020 contribution rates. City contribution rates for 2020 will be available in early June.
TMRS is a long-term investor, and losses in some years are expected. Portfolio diversification helps mitigate losses over time, and actuarial smoothing of assets reduces the contribution rate volatility that would otherwise be associated with gains and losses based on a single year’s investment performance.
Member accounts are credited annually with 5% interest that is not tied to investment performance. A loss in the portfolio does not affect member or retiree benefits.
Senate State Affairs Committee Passes TMRS Bill
On March 25, the Senate State Affairs Committee passed a Committee Substitute for SB 1337, by Senator Joan Huffman, by an 8-0 vote and recommended that the bill be placed on the Senate local and uncontested calendar for consideration by the full Senate. The bill contains the TMRS Board of Trustees’ recommendations for administrative changes to the TMRS Act. See the Legislative page for more information on the 86th Legislature.
TMRS sent Member Annual Statements to active TMRS members (contributing and noncontributing) in four groups according to the ZIP Code schedule below. All statements are now also available on MyTMRS. They show your account balance as of December 31, 2018 and provide beneficiary information and retirement estimates. If you have not received your statement, please contact TMRS.
Member ZIP Code
TMRS Bills Filed in the 86th Legislature
Legislation amending the TMRS Act has been filed in the Texas Senate (SB 1337, by Senator Joan Huffman) and House of Representatives (HB 2821, by Representative Dan Flynn). These proposed statutory changes will improve the administration and operations of TMRS. Both bills can be tracked on Texas Legislature Online, and we will post updates on the TMRS Legislative page. The Board of Trustees approved the recommendations contained in the bill at its meeting on December 6, 2018.
Report Suspicious Activity
Criminals continue to develop new techniques to steal personal information. If you ever receive a communication about your TMRS account by phone, email, or
postal mail from someone who claims to represent TMRS, keep these tips in mind: TMRS does not routinely contact you to ask about information in your account or ask you to verify information by
clicking on a link in an email, and TMRS does not send invoices or bills to members, retirees, or cities. If you ever have any doubt that a communication is actually from TMRS, please contact us at 800.924.8677 or
email us using the contact page.
TMRS Board Information
TMRS Board of Trustees officers for 2019 are Chair Bill Philibert (Director of Human Resources and Risk Management, City of Deer Park) and Vice-Chair David Landis (City Manager, City of Perryton).
Keep up with the activities of the TMRS Board using the tabs on the Board web page:
Calendar of meetings
Agendas (posted approximately a week before each meeting)
Minutes (following adoption)
Board materials and presentations (posted within a business day of each meeting)
You can also access information on Board committees, including the Advisory Committee on Benefit Design.
Retirement Account Statements Now Available
Annual account statements for TMRS retirees are now available on MyTMRS and will also be mailed today, February 8. The statements show the payment and withholding amount, retirement plan option, retirement date, beneficiary designation,
and amount of COLA (if applicable) in effect for 2019. Member Annual Statements will be available in March. If you have questions about your statement, call our Phone Center at 800-924-8677.
Tax Documents Now Available
The 2018 1099-R tax statements are now available for download through MyTMRS. These documents were also mailed to all payees on January 22. Please note that tax statements are not provided for members who are only current contributors to TMRS. The 1099-Rs are only provided for annuitants and members who received payments in 2018. If you have a question regarding the amount listed in box 5 of your 1099-R, watch this video on our Facebook page.
Rate Reminder Letters for Cities
TMRS mailed letters to cities today reminding them of their 2019 contribution rate. This letter includes the updated rates for cities that adopted an ordinance since the last valuation. This rate is effective January 1, 2019 with the January payroll report,
which must be submitted to TMRS no later than February 15, 2019. If you have questions about your city’s rate or how to submit your payroll, please call our office at 800.924.8677.
Annual Interest Credit Applied
Annual interest credit (5%) was applied to all eligible member accounts on December 31, 2018. The interest allocation is 5% on the balance in your account as of January 1, 2018. To view your interest earned along with your 2018 transaction history, log in to your account on MyTMRS.
Have you ever wondered how TMRS funds retirement benefits? Our new video provides a short, clear explanation of the fiscal foundation of the retirement program.
TMRS Staff Honored by Institutional Investor
Congratulations to TMRS Chief Investment Officer T.J. Carlson, who was named 2018 CIO of the Year at the second-annual Allocators’ Choice Awards in New York City.
TMRS was also voted Technology User of the Year for its use of data in risk management.
TMRS’ 2018 Annual Seminar a Success!
Thank you to the City of Lakeway and the Lakeway Resort & Spa, host of our TMRS 2018 Annual Seminar last week. It was a successful event hosting 140 attendees.
Seminar topics included using storytelling to improve communication, preventing cybercrime, and the effect of Texas’ changing demographics on the state
workforce. If you were unable to make it this year, you can view the seminar presentations on the website.
Put Your Account in Your Hands!
If you have not yet registered for MyTMRS, you should sign up as soon as possible. TMRS takes every precaution to keep your personal information safe, but online fraud continues to increase, putting vulnerable consumer data at risk. One easy step you can take to help protect your personal data from being used to commit identity theft or fraud is to create an account on MyTMRS. “Unclaimed” accounts can be targets for abuse if an imposter registers for them.
Follow TMRS on Social Media
Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for additional sources of information and updates on current events within TMRS. Share photos of how you’re spending your retirement with us on Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag #TMRSevent.
RetirementWise Fall Issue Now Available
The Fall 2018 issue of TMRS’ magazine for retirees has been posted on our website. If you are a registered user of MyTMRS, you should have received an email notification about the new issue earlier this week.
IRS Encourages “Paycheck Checkup” for Taxpayers’ Withholding
Due to the passage of a major tax law effective with the 2018 tax year, the IRS is encouraging taxpayers to do a “paycheck check-up” to help you determine the amount of tax to be withheld from your employee paycheck or your monthly benefit payment. Additional IRS guidance, including the calculator, and links to IRS YouTube videos, can be found on the IRS’ website.
If you decide to update your withholding, city employees need to submit a new W-4 to their city employer, and TMRS retirees should either change their withholding on MyTMRS or submit a new W-4P to TMRS.
Prevent Payment Delays
Retirees, if you’ve recently opened a new bank account or changed banks, don’t forget to let TMRS know! If you haven’t notified TMRS, you may not get your monthly payment on time. Update your direct deposit information by mailing or faxing a new Direct Deposit Authorization Form (TMRS-80E). If you send your bank’s form, make sure the TMRS form is attached in order to prevent any payment delays.
City GASB 75 Reporting Packages Now Available for Download
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement No. 75 (GASB 75) OPEB disclosure information for 2018 fiscal years is now available on the Eye on GASB page of our website. The GASB 75 Employer Reporting Package is based on the December 31, 2017 (measurement date) actuarial valuation. Cities with Supplemental Death Benefits for their retirees should report under GASB 75, which is first applicable for fiscal years ending on or after June 30, 2018. Select the GASB 75 Reporting Package button and then your city from the drop-down menu to download the package.
City GASB 68 Reporting Packages Now Available for Download
The Governmental Accounting Standard’s Board Statement No. 68 (GASB 68) pension disclosure information for 2018 fiscal years is now available on our website. GASB 75 Reporting Packages will be available next week. The “GASB 68 Employer Reporting Package” is based on the December 31, 2017 (measurement date) actuarial valuation. Topics under the “2018 What You Need for GASB 68 Compliance” page are grouped under: Financial Statement Audit, Financial Reporting, Actuarial Resources, and General GASB Resources. Please be sure your finance officer is aware of this resource. In addition, TMRS' SOC-1 Audit Report (PDF; for use with GASB 68) and your city’s census data (Excel; for use with both GASB 68 and 75) are available as downloads from the City Portal. If you have questions about these materials, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
2017 Financial Reports Posted
In its June meeting, the TMRS Board of Trustees approved the TMRS Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). The CAFR, posted on the Financial Reports web page, is prepared annually by the TMRS Finance staff and may be downloaded by sections or as a full PDF (156 pages). In addition to the CAFR, a 4-page “digest” financial report, called the Summary Annual Financial Report, is also posted on the Financial Reports page.
Board Meeting Scheduled for Thursday and Friday
The TMRS Board of Trustees will meet in our headquarters building (1200 N. Interstate 35, Austin) on Thursday, June 28, at 1:30 p.m. and on Friday, June 29, at 9 a.m. The agenda, meeting calendar, and post-meeting presentations are found on the Board of Trustees page.
Want TMRS and other pension news delivered to your inbox?
TMRS offers five different e-newsletters by online subscription: Pension Intelligence, TMRS E-Bulletin for Cities, TMRSDirect News for Members, TMRSDirect News for Retirees, and Executive E-News. TMRS’ newest e-newsletter, Pension Intelligence, summarizes relevant pension news each month. Read the June issue and past issues on the TMRS Highlights page of the website. Sign up for and manage your e-newsletters using your email address and optional password.
City Contribution Rate Letters Now Available for Download
The 2019 Rate Letters for cities are now available online. Choose your city’s name from the dropdown menu and view or download your rate letter. The letters contain detailed information on city contribution rates for the year beginning January 1, 2019. Please call 800-924-8677 if you have questions. Please note that the information cities will need for financial disclosures (the GASB 68 and GASB 75 reporting packages) will be available as separate downloads on the TMRS website by July 31.
Actuarial Valuation Available
The TMRS Actuarial Valuation for the year ending December 31, 2017, is now available for download from the TMRS website. The valuation contains rate information for cities for the year beginning January 1, 2019. A detailed video presentation by TMRS actuary GRS is available.
Board and Advisory Committee Meetings this Week
The TMRS Board of Trustees will meet in our headquarters building (1200 N. Interstate 35, Austin) on Thursday, May 24, at 1:30 p.m. and will hold a Joint Meeting with the Advisory Committee on Benefit Design on Friday, May 25, at 8:00 a.m. The agenda, meeting calendar, and post-meeting presentations are located on the Board of Trustees page.
City Rate Letters Will Be Posted Soon
The 2019 Rate Letters for cities will be available online by June 8. The letters will contain detailed information on city contribution rates for the year beginning January 1, 2019. If you need information before then, the Actuarial Valuation will be posted immediately after the TMRS Board meeting on May 25. Also, the information cities will need for financial disclosures (the GASB reporting package) will be available as a separate download on the TMRS website in late July.
Plano’s 457 Plan Receives Award
Congratulations to the City of Plano for receiving the Plan Sponsor of the Year award. The City’s 457 plan was chosen as the best Public Defined Contribution (DC) plan for 2018 by Plansponsor magazine. This supplemental plan is offered to Plano employees in addition to the TMRS plan.
Return to Work Video Now Available!
Are you a retiree interested in returning to active employment? This short video explains how working after retiring with TMRS may affect your benefits.
Want TMRS and Other Pension News Delivered to Your Inbox?
TMRS offers five different e-newsletters by online subscription: Pension Intelligence, TMRS E-Bulletin for Cities, TMRSDirect News for Members, TMRSDirect News for Retirees, and Executive E-News. TMRS’ newest e-newsletter, Pension Intelligence, summarizes relevant pension news each month (April 2018 issue now available). Sign up for and manage your e-newsletters online, using your email address and optional password.
Member Statements Viewable Online
All groups of 2017 Member Annual Statements have been mailed. If you did not receive your statement in the mail, there may be an issue with your address. You may view your statement online in MyTMRS, and you may also update your mailing address there. If you need additional help, call the TMRS Phonecenter at 800-924-8677 or send a message with our secure web form: Need Help?
Mailing Schedule for Member Annual Statements
TMRS will mail Annual Statements to active TMRS members (contributing and non-contributing) in four groups this month according to the schedule below. The statements will also be available on MyTMRS at the time they mail. These statements reflect each member’s account balance for the 2017 calendar year and provide beneficiary information and estimates of future retirement.
Member ZIP Code
TMRS Receives Outstanding Achievement Award
The Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR) for the the past fiscal year received the Award for Outstanding Achievement in Popular Annual Financial Reporting from the Governmental Finance Officers Association (GFOA) for the quality of information presented, reader appeal, understandability, distribution, and other elements. This is a prestigious national award, recognizing conformance with the highest standards for preparation of state and local government popular reports. In addition to posting the PAFR online, TMRS sends it to our members and retirees each year in INSIGHT and RetirementWise.
2017 Member Annual Statements
Member Annual Statements will be mailed in March to all members with a TMRS account (contributing and noncontributing). The annual statements reflect each member’s account balance for the 2017 calendar year and provide beneficiary information and estimates of your future retirement annuities.
Governor Appoints Two to TMRS Board
Governor Abbott has announced two appointments to the Board of Trustees of the Texas Municipal Retirement System. The Governor reappointed TMRS Chair Jim Parrish, Deputy City Manager for the City of Plano, for a second term and Jesús A. Garza, City Manager of the City of Kingsville, for his first term. Both terms end February 1, 2023. Mr. Garza replaces Roy Rodriguez, City Manager of the City of McAllen, who has provided exemplary service to the system, its members, and our cities since 2005.
2018 Retirement Account Statements
Statements for TMRS retirees/annuitants will be mailed February 8. These statements show the annuitant’s retirement option, retirement date, beneficiary information, and monthly TMRS retirement benefit payment (including withholding amount) in effect for 2018. Statements will be posted online by the mail date – viewable on MyTMRS.
Update on 2018 Tax Tables
The new tax tables for 2018 have been applied to retirement accounts. This means today’s first annuity payment for TMRS annuitants reflects the new withholding amount. To see their retirement payment amounts or to update withholding instructions, retirees/annuitants should log in to their accounts on MyTMRS.
1099-Rs and HLPS Statements Available on MyTMRS
2017 1099-R tax documents and HLPS statements (for public safety officers) are now available for download using MyTMRS. To download, save, and print, log in to your MyTMRS account and choose the Documents tab. Copies of these documents will also be mailed January 22.
With a new year and a new federal tax law, you may be wondering how the law will affect your monthly payments. The IRS has not released the new withholding table for 2018; therefore, TMRS will continue to use the 2017 tax table until we receive the 2018 table. We will notify annuitants when a change occurs or when we receive specific guidance from the IRS about this matter.
Happy New Year!
A new year means additional interest earned on your TMRS account. Interest credit was applied to all eligible member accounts on December 31. The interest allocation is 5% on the balance in your account January 1, 2017. To view your interest earned along with your 2017 transaction history, log in to your account on MyTMRS.
If you haven’t registered for MyTMRS, it’s time to put your account in your own hands! Creating your MyTMRS account (using a strong password and security questions) keeps your information safe while allowing you 24/7 access. With MyTMRS, you can do more than view your account information – now you can update your contact information, communications preferences, and beneficiary (in most cases) online!
TMRS extends its deepest sympathy to the family of San Marcos police officer Kenneth Copeland, killed in the line of duty on December 4.
The double-sized Fall/Winter 2017 issue of RetirementWise is now available on our website! The Direct Deposit Calendar is inside the issue, or you can download the "card" and print it.
Our Brand New Website Is Live!
We’ve redesigned our web experience with you in mind. The look and navigation of the website is new, and information has been made more accessible. Be sure to check in frequently for updates and announcements about TMRS, including new online tools for MyTMRS and the City Portal.
Hurricane Harvey Update
As the Texas coast continues its recovery from the hurricane, please remember that TMRS is here to help members and cities who may still be dealing with storm-related issues. Call us at 800.924.8677 during business hours or send a message using our Need Help? form if we can be of assistance.
New – Online Beneficiary Designation in MyTMRS
TMRS members who are registered users of MyTMRS® and whose beneficiary selection does not require spousal consent can now designate or update their beneficiaries online. Please log in to MyTMRS and click on the Beneficiaries button to verify your beneficiary selection. If you need to make any updates or changes, click the blue Update button, and MyTMRS will guide you through the steps. You’ll receive an immediate confirmation message, and you’ll also receive an email stating a change was made. The blue Update button will be available if you are eligible to make a change. If you’re not a MyTMRS user, there’s never been a better time to create an account.
City GASB Reporting Packages Now Available for Download
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement No. 68 (GASB 68) pension disclosure information for 2017 fiscal years is now available on our website. This “GASB Employer Reporting Package” is based on the December 31, 2016 (measurement date) actuarial valuation.
Topics on the Eye on GASB page are grouped under: Financial Statement Audit, Financial Reporting, Actuarial Resources, and Other GASB Resources. Please be sure your finance office and external auditor are aware of this resource.
TMRS' SOC-1 Audit Report (PDF) and your city’s census data (Excel) are available via the TMRS City Portal. If your city is not yet on the City Portal, sign up now!
TMRS Cities: Sign up for the Annual Training Seminar, “Strong by Design”
TMRS Cities: Sign up for the Annual Training Seminar, “Strong by Design”
City personnel who administer or make decisions about the TMRS plan are invited to register for the 2017 TMRS Annual Training Seminar, October 25-27, at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center, 1501 Gaylord Trail, Grapevine, TX (seminar webpage). This year registration for the Annual Training Seminar is online, and we now accept credit card payment for the $125 fee. In addition to event registration, if you need a room at the Gaylord, the “Location & Hotel Information” link on the seminar webpage explains how to reserve your room at the special $189 seminar rate. We look forward to seeing you at TMRS’ Annual Training Seminar!
TMRS Board Member Receives Honor from the Texas City Management Association
The Texas City Management Association (TCMA) named McAllen City Manager Roel "Roy" Rodriguez City Administrator of the Year for 2017. Mr. Rodriguez has served on the TMRS Board of Trustees since 2005. TMRS congratulates Mr. Rodriguez on his receipt of this honor and extends our thanks for his service to his city and to the municipal employees of Texas. Read the full story from the McAllen Monitor.
City Contribution Rate Letters Now Available for Download
The 2018 Rate Letters for cities are now available online. Choose your city’s name from the dropdown menu and view or download your rate letter. The letters contain detailed information on city contribution rates for the year beginning January 1, 2018. Please call 800-924-8677 if you have questions.
Please note that the information cities will need for financial disclosures (the GASB reporting package) will be available as a separate download on the TMRS website later this summer.
Actuarial Valuation Available
The TMRS Actuarial Valuation for the year ending December 31, 2016, is now available for download from the TMRS website. The valuation contains rate information for cities for the year beginning January 1, 2018.
Texas Senate Approves TMRS Board Appointments
The Governor’s appointments of Jim Jeffers, City Manager of Nacogdoches, and David Landis, City Manager of Perryton, to the TMRS Board of Trustees were approved on May 16 by the Texas Senate. Both Trustees’ terms expire February 1, 2021.
New Report Recognizes TMRS for Transparency
The Center for State and Local Government Excellence has just issued a report on reporting and disclosure by public pension systems. The report analyzes the practices of 83 U.S. public retirement systems and identifies five systems as having "developed effective approaches to offering financial, benefit, and other related information, while also maintaining ongoing communication with stakeholder groups." TMRS is proud to have been one of the five systems recognized.
My City Plan
A new feature on the TMRS website allows you to see a one-page description of the plan your TMRS city offers. The page is designed for phones and tablets as well as computer screens.
Mailing Schedule for Member Annual Statements
Annual statements to active TMRS members (contributing and non-contributing) will be sent in four groups this month according to the schedule below. The statements will also be available on MyTMRS at the time they mail. These statements reflect each member’s account balance for the 2016 calendar year and provide estimates of future retirement annuities and beneficiary information.
Member ZIP Codes
00000 - 75999
76000 - 77499
77500 - 78299
78300 - 99999
2017 Retirement Account Statements Now Available
Statements for TMRS retirees/annuitants will be mailed today, February 13. These statements are already posted online – you may view your statement by logging on to MyTMRS.
1099-Rs and HELPS Tax Statements for 2016
TMRS plans to mail 1099-R forms to all payees receiving 1099-Rs on January 23. The 1099-Rs will also be available on MyTMRS on January 23. In addition, the HELPS Tax Statements for 2016 are available on MyTMRS and were mailed on January 19.
TMRS would like to assure our members that the news stories about pension problems in certain Texas cities do not involve TMRS. Houston and Dallas have pension programs that are local and independent, not affiliated with TMRS. If you want more information about how TMRS works and how it is different from most other retirement programs, you may find this presentation helpful.
“Transparency Star” Resource Page for Cities
TMRS has posted an online resource page to help cities locate the information needed to apply for the public pension star, one of the five stars awarded under the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts’ Transparency Stars program (application process information here). The Transparency Stars program for local governments aims to recognize transparency in decision-making in several areas, including pensions. The City of Carrollton was the first TMRS city to obtain the Transparency Star for Public Pensions.