Text: H.R.1059 — 101st Congress (1989-1990)All Information (Except Text)

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HR 1059 IH
101st CONGRESS
1st Session
 H. R. 1059
To amend chapters 83 and 84 of title 5, United States Code, to expedite the
processing of applications of Federal employees seeking retirement benefits,
and for other purposes.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
February 22, 1989
Mr. FLORIO (for himself, Mr. ROYBAL, Ms. SCHNEIDER, Mr. PEPPER, Mr. DELLUMS,
Mr. MANTON, Mr. HEFNER, Mr. MARTINEZ, Mr. FAUNTROY, Mr. HARRIS, Mr. AKAKA,
Mr. OWENS of New York, Mr. COSTELLO, Mr. MORRISON of Connecticut, Mr. LEATH of
Texas, Mr. HANSEN, Mr. FASCELL, Mr. SMITH of Florida, Mr. ROBINSON, Mr. ROE,
Mr. ERDREICH, Mr. WILSON, Mr. BATES, Mr. WOLF, Mr. DYMALLY, Mr. KANJORSKI,
Mr. NEAL of Massachusetts, Mr. ROWLAND of Connecticut, Mr. SAVAGE, Mr. RITTER,
Mr. MCCURDY, Mr. DWYER of New Jersey, Mr. DAVIS, Mr. ATKINS, Mr. SCHUMER,
Mr. BLAZ, Mr. BONIOR, Mr. BEREUTER, Mr. GORDON, Mr. KILDEE, Mr. HAWKINS,
Mr. DEFAZIO, Mr. JONTZ, Mrs. COLLINS, Mr. HAYES of Illinois, Mr. HOYER,
Mr. SHUMWAY, Mr. SCHUETTE, Mr. HAMMERSCHMIDT, Mr. PARRIS, Mr. FRANK, Mr. HENRY,
and Mr. BATEMAN) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the
Committee on Post Office and Civil Service
A BILL
To amend chapters 83 and 84 of title 5, United States Code, to expedite the
processing of applications of Federal employees seeking retirement benefits,
and for other purposes.
  Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
  States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. FEDERAL RETIREMENT PROCESSING.
  (a) SHORT TITLE- This Act may be cited as the `Federal Retirees Fairness
  Act'.
  (b) PROCESSING OF CIVIL SERVICE RETIREMENT SYSTEM APPLICATIONS- Chapter
  83 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by inserting after section
  8347 the following new section:
`Sec. 8347a. Processing of applications
  `(a) Within 180 days after the date on which an employee begins service
  with an agency (other than on a temporary or other similar basis), such
  agency shall take appropriate measures to ensure that the employee's
  personnel file contains all relevant information concerning any previous
  employment or military service which would be needed for purposes of any
  determination relating to such employee's rights under this chapter.
  `(b)(1) If an employee notifies an agency of an intention to separate from
  service, or if the employee dies such agency shall--
  `(A) inform such employee or the employee's survivors of any retirement
  counseling and other related services or resources available to such
  employee or survivor; and
  `(B) in the case of any employee who would be entitled to an immediate
  annuity based on such employee's age and service as of the date of such
  employee's proposed date of retirement under section 8335 or 8336 of
  this title, take appropriate measures to ensure that all information and
  records needed for any agency certification, documentation, or other action
  required in the processing of an application for such annuity are complete
  and accurate.
  `(2) All measures required under paragraph (1)(B) with respect to an
  employee shall be initiated--
  `(A) upon receipt of the notification of intent to separate, when such
  notification is furnished at least 4 months, but not earlier than 12 months,
  in advance, or
  `(B) if the notification of intent to separate is furnished later than 4
  months before the proposed separation date, as soon after the receipt of
  such notification as possible,
so that all such measures can be completed and any certification,
documentation, or other matter required from the agency will be received by
the Office no later than 30 days after the date of the employee's separation.
  `(c) If an employee applies for an annuity under section 8337 of this
  title through such employee's employing agency, all measures described in
  subsection (b)(1)(B) shall be completed by the employing agency, and all
  certification, documentation, or other matter required from the agency
  shall be received by the Office no later than 30 days after the date on
  which the employee files the application.
  `(d) In the case of any employee who applies for a refund of retirement
  deductions under section 8342 of this title through the employing agency of
  such employee, such agency shall take appropriate measures to insure that all
  information and records needed for any agency certification, documentation,
  or other action required in the processing of an application for refund
  are complete and accurate so that all measures required under subsection
  (b)(1) and section 8342 with respect to the employee are completed and
  received by the Office no later than 30 days from the date of separation.
  `(e) In the case of any deceased employee, such agency shall take appropriate
  measures to insure that all information and records needed for any agency
  certification, documentation or other action required in the processing of
  an application for death benefits are complete and accurate so that all
  measures required under subsection (b)(1) and section 8341 of this title
  with respect to the deceased employee and the survivors of such employee
  are completed and received in the Office no later than 30 days from the
  date of the employee's death.
  `(f)(1) The Office shall compile aggregate records on a quarterly basis on--
  `(A) the number of applications for retirement, death benefits, or refunds
  of deductions under section 8335, 8336, 8337, 8341, or 8342 of this title
  received by the Office from each agency; and
  `(B) of the total number under subparagraph (A)--
  `(i) to the extent that section 8335, 8336, 8341, or 8342 of this title
  is involved, how many (expressed as a number and as a percentage) were
  received by the Office--
  `(I) before 31 days after the date of separation or death;
  `(II) after 30 days but before 61 days after the date of separation or
  death; and
  `(III) after 60 days after the date of separation or death; and
  `(ii) to the extent that section 8337 of this title is involved, how
  many applications (expressed as a number and as a percentage) which were
  accompanied by preliminary retirement records, and were received by the
  Office--
  `(I) before 31 days after the date the application was filed with the
  employing agency;
  `(II) after 30 days, but before 61 days after the date the application
  was filed with the employing agency; and
  `(III) after 60 days after the date the application was filed with the
  employing agency.
  `(2) The Office shall--
  `(A) prepare a report on a quarterly basis on the performance of each
  agency, as determined under paragraph (1) of this subsection; and
  `(B) send a copy of each such report to the head of each agency.
  `(3)(A) No later than 30 days after receiving a report under paragraph
  (2)(B), each agency described in subparagraph (B) of this paragraph shall--
  `(i) prepare a corrective action plan specifying actions to bring such
  agency into conformance with the provisions of this subsection; and
  `(ii) send such plan to the Inspector General of such agency or, if such
  agency does not have an Inspector General, the officer designated to
  perform the functions of Inspector General within such agency.
  `(B) This paragraph applies with respect to any agency, the percentage
  for which in any quarter is less than 80 percent for the figure reported
  under paragraph (1)(B)(i)(I) or (1)(B)(ii)(I) of this subsection.
  `(C) The Inspector General (or the officer performing the functions of
  Inspector General, if applicable) of the agency shall review any corrective
  action plan submitted to such Inspector General (or officer) under this
  paragraph and provide such assistance as appropriate to assist such agency
  in achieving conformance with the provisions of this subsection.
  `(4) No later than April 30 of each year, the Office shall submit a report
  to the Congress on--
  `(A) the speed, accuracy, and completeness with which agencies have provided
  the Office with the records, certifications, and other matters required in
  order to process applications for annuities, death benefits, or refunds of
  deductions under section 8335, 8336, 8337, 8341, or 8342 of this title; and
  `(B) the average number of days from the date that the Office receives an
  application and supporting documentation--
  `(i) for an annuity or refund based on section 8335, 8336, 8341, or 8342
  of this title, until the Office's authorization of the refund or first
  annuity payment for those cases that are determined by the Office to be
  complete enough to initiate the payment process; and
  `(ii) for an annuity based on section 8337 of this title, until the
  Office's authorization of the first annuity payment for those cases that
  are determined by the Office to be complete enough to initiate the payment
  process.'.
  (c) PROCESSING OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM APPLICATIONS- Chapter
  84 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by inserting after section
  8466 the following new section:
`Sec. 8466a. Processing of applications
  `(a) Within 180 days after the date on which an employee begins service
  with an agency (other than on a temporary or other similar basis), such
  agency shall take appropriate measures to ensure that the employee's
  personnel file contains all relevant information concerning any previous
  employment or military service which would be needed for purposes of any
  determination relating to such employee's rights under this chapter.
  `(b)(1) If an employee notifies an agency of an intention to separate from
  service, or if the employee dies, such agency shall--
  `(A) inform such employee or the employee's survivors of any retirement
  counseling and other related services or resources available to such
  employee or survivor; and
  `(B) in the case of any employee who would be entitled to an immediate
  annuity based on such employee's age and service as of the date of such
  employee's proposed date of retirement under section 8412, 8414, or 8425
  of this title, take appropriate measures to ensure that all information
  and records needed for an agency certification, documentation, or other
  action required in the processing of an application for such annuity are
  complete and accurate.
  `(2) All measures required under paragraph (1)(B) with respect to an
  employee shall be initiated--
  `(A) upon receipt of the notification of intent to separate, when such
  notification is furnished at least 4 months, but not earlier than 12 months,
  in advance, or
  `(B) if the notification of intent to separate is furnished later than 4
  months before the proposed separation date, as soon after the receipt of
  such notification as possible,
so that all such measures can be completed and any certification,
documentation, or other matter required from the agency will be received by
the Office no later than 30 days after the date of the employee's separation.
  `(c) If an employee applies for an annuity under section 8451 of this
  title through such employee's employing agency, all measures described in
  subsection (b)(1)(B) shall be completed by the employing agency, and all
  certification, documentation, or other matter required from the agency
  shall be received by the Office no later than 30 days after the date on
  which the employee files the application.
  `(d) In the case of any employee who applies for a refund of retirement
  deductions under section 8424 of this title through the employing agency of
  such employee, such agency shall take appropriate measures to ensure that all
  information and records needed for any agency certification, documentation,
  or other action required in the processing of an application for refund
  are complete and accurate so that all measures required under subsection
  (b)(1) and section 8424 with respect to the employee are completed and
  received by the Office no later than 30 days from the date of separation.
  `(e) In the case of any deceased employee, such agency shall take appropriate
  measures to ensure that all information and records needed for any agency
  certification, documentation or other action required in the processing
  of an application for death benefits are complete and accurate so that all
  measures required under subsection (b)(1) and subchapter IV of chapter 84
  of this title with respect to the deceased employee and the survivors of
  such employee are completed and received in the Office no later than 30
  days from the date of the employee's death.
  `(f)(1) The Office shall compile aggregate records on a quarterly basis on--
  `(A) the number of applications for retirement, death benefits, or refunds
  of deductions under section 8412, 8414, 8424, 8425, 8451, or subchapter
  IV of chapter 84 of this title received by the Office from each agency; and
  `(B) of the total number under subparagraph (A)--
  `(i) to the extent that section 8412, 8414, 8424, 8425, or subchapter IV
  of chapter 84 of this title is involved, how many (expressed as a number
  and as a percentage) were received by the Office--
  `(I) before 31 days after the date of separation or death;
  `(II) after 30 days, but before 61 days after the date of separation or
  death; and
  `(III) after 60 days after the date of separation or death; and
  `(ii) to the extent that section 8451 of this title is involved, how
  many applications (expressed as a number and as a percentage), which
  were accompanied by preliminary retirement records, and were received by
  the Office--
  `(I) before 31 days after the date the application was filed with the
  employing agency;
  `(II) after 30 days, but before 61 days after the date the application
  was filed with the employing agency; and
  `(III) after 60 days after the date the application was filed with the
  employing agency.
  `(2) The Office shall--
  `(A) prepare a report on a quarterly basis on the performance of each
  agency, as determined under paragraph (1) of this subsection; and
  `(B) send a copy of each such report to the head of each agency.
  `(3)(A) No later than 30 days after receiving a report under paragraph
  (2)(B), each agency described in subparagraph (B) of this paragraph shall--
  `(i) prepare a corrective action plan specifying actions to bring such
  agency into conformance with the provisions of this subsection; and
  `(ii) send such plan to the Inspector General of such agency or, if such
  agency does not have an Inspector General, the officer designated to
  perform the functions of Inspector General within such agency.
  `(B) This paragraph applies with respect to any agency, the percentage
  for which in any quarter is less than 80 percent for the figure reported
  under paragraph (1)(B)(i)(I) or (1)(B)(ii)(I) of this subsection.
  `(C) The Inspector General (or the officer performing the functions of
  Inspector General, if applicable) of the agency shall review any corrective
  action plan submitted to such Inspector General (or officer) under this
  paragraph and provide such assistance as appropriate to assist such agency
  in achieving conformance with the provisions of this subsection.
  `(4) No later than April 30 of each year, the Office shall submit a report
  to the Congress on--
  `(A) the speed, accuracy, and completeness with which agencies have
  provided the Office with the records, certifications, and other matters
  required in order to process applications for annuities, death benefits,
  or refunds under section 8412, 8414, 8424, 8425, 8451, or subchapter IV
  of chapter 84 of this title; and
  `(B) the average number of days from the date that the Office receives an
  application and supporting documentation--
  `(i) for an annuity or refund based on section 8412, 8414, 8424, 8425, or
  subchapter IV of chapter 84 of this title, until the Office's authorization
  of the refund or first annuity payment for those cases that are determined
  by the Office to be complete enough to initiate the payment process; and
  `(ii) for an annuity based on section 8451 of this title, until the
  Office's authorization of the first annuity payment for those cases that
  are determined by the Office to be complete enough to initiate the payment
  process.'.
  (d) FORM OF APPLICATIONS UNDER CHAPTER 84- Section 8466 of title 5, United
  States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  `(d) Applications under this chapter shall be in such form as the Office
  prescribes. Agencies shall support the applications by such certificates
  as the Office considers necessary to the determination of the rights
  of applicants.'.
  (e) RETIREMENT COUNSELING- Section 8350 of title 5, United States Code,
  is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  `(d)(1) No less than twice each year, the retirement counselor or designee of
  each agency shall conduct retirement counseling seminars for all interested
  employees (including employees within the meaning of chapter 84).
  `(2) Such seminars shall include an explanation and review of--
  `(A) the retirement processing functions of the agency and the Office of
  Personnel Management, respectively;
  `(B) the application which the employee is required to complete and any
  certification or documents which are required to be submitted to the
  Office before refund or annuity payments may begin, including written
  information designed to assist employees in the expeditious completion of
  such applications;
  `(C) specific circumstances which may complicate and lengthen the amount
  of time needed to process an application; and
  `(D) methods to assist employees in solving potential problems to complete
  the required retirement documentation.'.
  (f) CONFORMING AMENDMENTS- (1) The table of sections for chapter 83 of title
  5, United States Code, is amended by inserting after the item relating to
  section 8347 the following:
`8347a. Processing of applications.'.
  (2) The table of sections for chapter 84 of title 5, United States Code, is
  amended by inserting after the item relating to section 8466 the following:
`8466a. Processing of applications.'.
  (g) EFFECTIVE DATE- The amendments made by this Act shall be effective 6
  months after the date of the enactment of this Act.