Maine Revised Statutes

§17760. Service in the armed forces

Service credit for service in the United States Armed Forces is governed as follows. [2003, c. 693, §3 (AMD).]

1. Service after becoming a member.  A member is entitled to service credit for the period of time during which the member's membership is continued under section 17655, subsection 1, under the following terms and conditions. Except as provided in paragraph B, service credit under this subsection is limited to 5 years.
A. A member who is otherwise entitled to service credit for military leave may not be deprived of these credits if the member's return to membership service is delayed beyond 90 days after the member's separation from the service in the Armed Forces of the United States, under conditions other than dishonorable, if the delay is caused by an illness or disability incurred in the service in the armed forces. [2003, c. 387, §3 (AMD).]
B. A member may not receive service credit for military leave beyond the end of the period of first enlistment or induction or beyond 5 years from the date of original call to active duty in the armed forces, whichever is less, unless:
(1) The member's return to active duty in the armed forces or the extension of the period of service beyond 5 years is required by some mandatory provision; and
(2) The person presents proof of the return to or extension of service satisfactory to the board. [2003, c. 387, §3 (AMD).]
[ 2003, c. 693, §3 (AMD) .]
2. Service before becoming a member. 
[ 2003, c. 693, §3 (RP) .]
3. Service before becoming member.  A member who served as a full-time active duty member of the United States Armed Forces before becoming a member and who separated from the armed forces under conditions other than dishonorable is entitled under this subsection to purchase service credit for the period of time that the member served in the armed forces by complying with the terms and conditions of this subsection and the applicable provisions of subsection 4 or 5. Service credit under this subsection is limited to 4 years.
A. A member may purchase service credit at the cost set forth in subsection 4 if the member has at least 15 years of creditable service at the time of retirement, the member makes payment as required under subsection 4 and the member:
(1) Began membership prior to January 1, 1976;
(2) Served in the United States Armed Forces during any federally recognized period of conflict; or
(3) Was awarded an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, a Combat Action Ribbon, a Combat Infantry Badge or any other campaign or expeditionary medal and the receipt of such a medal would allow the member to be considered "preference eligible" under 5 United States Code, Section 2108(3)(A) or 2108(3)(B). A member described in this subparagraph is entitled to purchase service credit at the cost set forth in subsection 4 only if a cost subsidy for that member's service credit has been paid to the State Employee and Teacher Retirement Program as provided in subsection 6. [2007, c. 491, §137 (AMD).]
B. A member may purchase service credit at the cost set forth in subsection 5 if the member has at least 5 years of creditable service at the time of retirement and the member makes payment as required under subsection 5. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
C. For purposes of this subsection, "federally recognized period of conflict" means World War I, April 6, 1917 to November 11, 1918 or to March 31, 1920 if service was in Russia; World War II, December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946; the Korean Conflict, June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955; the Vietnam War, August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975 and the period beginning on February 28, 1961 and ending on May 7, 1975 in the case of a veteran who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period; and the Persian Gulf War, August 7, 1990 to the date that the United States Government recognizes as the end of the Persian Gulf War. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
[ 2007, c. 491, §137 (AMD) .]
4. Members qualified for credit at subsidized cost.  A member qualified under subsection 3 to purchase service credit at the cost set forth in this subsection is entitled to service credit upon payment of back contributions under section 17713, subsection 2. Upon complete payment of back contributions, the member must be granted service credit for the period of time for which payment is made. Upon making partial payment, the member must be granted service credit on a pro rata basis in accordance with rules adopted by the board.
[ 2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW) .]
5. Members qualified for credit at actuarial cost.  A member qualified under subsection 3 to purchase service credit at the cost set forth in this subsection is entitled to service credit if the member pays into the Members' Contribution Fund an amount that, together with regular interest on that amount, is the actuarial equivalent, at the effective date of the retirement benefit, of the portion of the retirement benefit based on the additional creditable service.
A. Payment must be made before any retirement benefit becomes effective for that member. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
B. Payment may be made to the retirement system by a single direct payment or by annual direct payments in accordance with section 17701, subsection 4. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
C. A person who purchases service credit under this subsection and who subsequently, without inclusion of the purchased service credit and prior to retirement, becomes qualified for service credit at the cost set forth in subsection 4 is entitled to purchase the service credit under section 17713, subsection 2 and to receive a refund of the amount paid under this subsection that exceeds the cost to purchase the service credit under section 17713. A person who would have been qualified to purchase service credit under subsection 4 prior to retirement if a timely appropriation had been made under subsection 6 is entitled to a refund under this subsection even if the person becomes qualified after retirement. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
[ 2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW) .]
6. Cost subsidy for certain award recipients; annual report.  A recipient of an award described in subsection 3, paragraph A, subparagraph (3) may purchase service credit at a subsidized cost under subsection 4 only if the retirement system has received an appropriation of the difference between the actuarial cost of that member's service credit and the amount to be paid by the member under subsection 4.
A. The retirement system shall annually, by February 15th, report to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over retirement matters and the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over appropriations matters:
(1) The amount, if any, in the account maintained for the purposes of this subsection;
(2) The cost to subsidize the purchase of service credit under this subsection for members who applied and were determined eligible in the calendar year immediately preceding the report; and
(3) The cost to subsidize the purchase of service credit under this subsection for members who applied and were determined eligible in each of the calendar years before the immediately preceding calendar year for which full appropriations were not made. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
B. In response to the report described in paragraph A, the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over retirement matters may report out legislation appropriating funds for all or a part of the costs set forth in the report. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
C. The retirement system shall maintain a separate account for funds appropriated for the purposes of this subsection. When the account contains sufficient funds to subsidize the purchase of service credit for all members who applied and were determined to be eligible in a particular calendar year, the retirement system shall allow that group of members to make purchases. Funds in the account must be applied to the earliest calendar year for which members remain who are eligible but have not yet been able to make purchases. [2003, c. 693, §3 (NEW).]
D. If funds are appropriated under paragraph B to subsidize the purchase of service credit for specific members, and those members either decline to purchase service credit or are able to purchase the service credit without subsidy, the unused funds must be applied in accordance with paragraph C. [2017, c. 88, §21 (NEW).]
[ 2017, c. 88, §21 (AMD) .]
SECTION HISTORY
1985, c. 801, §§5,7 (NEW). 1989, c. 95, §8 (AMD). 1989, c. 907, §3 (AMD). 1991, c. 479, §§2,3 (AMD). 2001, c. 114, §§1-3 (AMD). 2003, c. 387, §§2,3 (AMD). 2003, c. 693, §3 (AMD). 2007, c. 491, §137 (AMD). 2017, c. 88, §21 (AMD).