CHAPTER 453

FORMERLY

HOUSE BILL NO. 1000

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 55, TITLE 29, DELAWARE CODE, RELATING TO THE STATE EMPLOYEES' PENSION PLAN.

Section 1. Amend Section 5501 (a), Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by adding a sentence after subparagraph (4) to read as follows:

"A person who meets the requirements of this subsection shall be regarded as an 'employee' during the period he or she is on an approved medical leave and, for school personnel who do not work on 12-month basis, during the period between the expiration of such leave and the beginning of the next regular school term."

Section 2. Amend Section 5501 (b)(1), Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by striking said subsection and substituting in lieu thereof a new subsection (b)(1) to read as follows:

"(1) Service as an employee, excluding any period during which an employee is on an approved medical leave or approved sabbatical leave unless service credit for such period or periods of leave is purchased pursuant to subparagraphs (9) or (10) of this section."

Section 3. Amend Section 5501 (b)(9), Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by striking said subparagraph and substituting in lieu thereof a new subparagraph (b)(9) to read as follows:

"(9) Approved medical leave if the employee subsequently accrues at least one year of credited service under paragraph (1) of this subsection and pays into the Fund prior to the issuance of his or her first pension check, contributions determined by multiplying the rates in effect at the time of payment for employee contributions and State appropriations times the average of the sixty months of creditable compensation used to calculate the individual's pension benefit times the months or fractions thereof so credited. Any credited service purchased for medical leave shall not be used to determine eligibility for benefits under this chapter."

Section 4. Amend Section 5501 (b), Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by adding a new subparagraph (10) to read as follows:

"(10) Approved sabbatical leave other than that provided by Section 1325, Chapter 13, Title 14, Delaware Code if the employee pays into the Fund, prior to the issuance of his or her first pension check, contributions equal to the sum of the employee contributions and State appropriations which would have been made to the Fund during such periods of sabbatical leave, with the amount

of such contributions to be determined in accordance with rules and regulations adopted by the Board."

Section 5. Amend Section 5501, Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by adding a new subsection (i) to read as follows:

"(i) 'Approved medical leave; means a leave of absence from covered State employment, without pay, for a definite period of time, authorized by the head of the employee's department or agency, and necessitated by the employee's mental and/or physical condition. Approved medical leaves shall not exceed one year unless extended by the Board of Pension Trustees."

Section 6. Amend Section 5530, Chapter 55, Title 29, Delaware Code by adding immediately at the end of such section the following:

"There shall be a rebuttable presumption that an individual who fails to apply for a withdrawal benefit within five (5) years after the date he or she first becomes eligible to receive such benefits has waived his or her right to the withdrawal benefit."

Section 7. The effective date of this Act shall be July 1, 1978. The provisions of Section 1 shall apply to all persons on approved medical leave on or after the effective date.

Approved July 8, 1978.