P.L. 1997, CHAPTER 63, approved April 7, 1997
Senate, No. 972
An Act concerning the terms of office of certain elected members of the board of trustees of the Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund, amending N.J.S.18A:66-56 and supplementing chapter 66 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. (New section) Notwithstanding the provisions of N.J.S.18A:66-56 and in order to effect the staggering of the terms of the members of the board of trustees of the retirement system elected from the groups defined in the regulations of the retirement system, the terms of those members shall be as follows:
a. the member elected from Group A for a term commencing January 1, 1997, shall serve a term of three years;
b. the member elected from Group C for a term commencing January 1, 1997, shall serve a term of two years;
c. the member elected from Group B for a term commencing on January 1, 1998, shall serve a term of three years.
Members elected thereafter shall serve three-year terms.
2. N.J.S.18A:66-56 is amended to read as follows:
18A:66-56. Subject to the provisions of chapter 70 of the laws of 1955, the general responsibility for the proper operation of the teachers' pension and annuity fund shall be vested in the board of trustees. Subject to the limitations of the law, the board shall annually establish rules and regulations for the administration and transaction of its business and for the control of the funds created by this article. Such rules and regulations shall be consistent with those adopted by the other pension funds within the Division of Pensions in order to permit the most economical and uniform administration of all such retirement systems. The membership of the board shall consist of the following:
(a) The State Treasurer or the deputy State Treasurer, when designated for that purpose by the State Treasurer;
(b) Two trustees appointed by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate, who shall serve for a term of office of three years and until their successors are appointed, and who shall be private citizens of the State of New Jersey and who are neither an officer thereof nor active or retired members of the system, except that of the two trustees initially appointed by the Governor pursuant to P.L.1992, c.41 (C.43:6A-33.1 et al.), one shall be appointed for a term of two years and one for a term of three years;
(c) Three trustees from among the active or retired members of the retirement system, elected by the membership or by the delegates elected for this purpose by the membership, one of whom shall be elected each year for a three-year term commencing on January 1, following such election in such manner as the board of trustees may prescribe;
(d) One trustee not an active or retired teacher nor an officer of the State, elected by the other trustees, other than the State Treasurer, for a term of three years.
A vacancy occurring in the board of trustees shall be filled in the same manner as provided in this section for regular appointment or election to the position where the vacancy exists, except that a vacancy occurring in the trustees elected from among the active or retired members of the retirement system shall be filled for the unexpired term.
Each member of the board shall, upon appointment or election, take an oath of office that, so far as it devolves upon him, he will diligently and honestly administer the board's affairs, and that he will not knowingly violate or willfully permit to be violated any provision of law applicable to this article. The oath shall be subscribed to by the member making it, certified by the officer before whom it is taken and filed immediately in the office of the Secretary of State.
Each trustee shall be entitled to one vote in the board and a majority of all the votes of the entire board shall be necessary for a decision by the board of trustees at a meeting of the board. The board shall keep a record of all its proceedings, which shall be open to public inspection.
The members of the board shall serve without compensation but shall be reimbursed for any necessary expenditures. No employee shall suffer loss of salary or wages through serving on the board.
The State Treasurer shall designate a medical board after consultation with the Director of the Division of Pensions, subject to veto by the board for valid reason. It shall be composed of three physicians who are not eligible to participate in the retirement system. The medical board shall pass upon all medical examinations required under the provisions of this article, shall investigate all essential statements and certificates by or on behalf of a member in connection with an application for disability retirement, and shall report in writing to the retirement system its conclusions and recommendations upon all matters referred to it.
(cf: P.L.1992, c.41, s.5)
3. This act shall take effect immediately.
This bill restores the staggered terms for members of the board of trustees of the Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund who are elected from among the active or retired members of the retirement system. The terms of those members were originally staggered and filled only for the unexpired term, but the provision for filling vacancies for the unexpired term was eliminated in 1971. Several years ago there was a mid-term vacancy which resulted in two elected members standing for election at the same time and serving concurrent terms. This creates the potential for instability and a lack of continuity among the elected members of the board. Under this bill, the requirement for filling vacancies for the unexpired term is restored, and specific terms for the next three holders of the elected positions are established. Thereafter, one member will be elected each year for a three-year term.
Restores staggered terms for certain elected members of TPAF board of trustees.