About Utah Retirement Systems

Mission Statement

We serve Utah public employees with retirement and insurance benefits in a partnership of trust with a commitment to value, innovation, and excellence.

History

1910s: The "Retirement of Public School Teachers" act was passed by the Utah Legislature, providing for the organization of teacher retirement associations. Salt Lake City becomes the first city to establish a Teachers' Retirement System. The first statewide pension plan was enacted, covering all full-time paid firefighters and volunteer firefighters.

1920s: City police pension plans were established for Salt Lake City, Ogden, Provo, and Logan, and the Prison and Industrial School Guards Retirement System was established to cover full-time employees of the prison.

1930s: Ogden and Provo establish teachers retirement systems. The first state retirement law was passed with the "Teachers' Retirement Act", and in 1937 the Teachers' Retirement System became effective, covering both teachers and administrators.

1940s: The Teachers' Retirement System was opened to full-time, non-teaching school employees, the "State Officers' and Employees' Retirement System of Utah" was created to cover state employees. Optional state coverage was established for judges and local government employees.

1950s: The State Employees Retirement System was repealed and Social Security coverage was extended. The Teachers Retirement System was terminated in favor of a new system integrated with Social Security benefits, and retirement systems were established for Highway Patrol and Judges.

1960s: Joint administration was established for public employees and teachers systems. The School Employees System, Public Employees System, Judges System, Public Safety System (including Highway Patrol), Prison Guards System, former Employee Retirement System, and Firefighters System were placed under a single board. The Public employees and Teachers Employees systems were consolidated into the State Retirement System.

1970s: Utah Firefighters System and Judges System were established, health and medical insurance transferred to the Retirement Office, and a Legislative subcommittee on Retirement was established.

1980s: Custody of the Retirement funds was transferred to the Retirement Board from the State Treasurer. The Retirement System was declared an independent agency. A 2 1/2% formula was implemented for Public Safety and Firefighters Systems. The Public Employees Noncontributory Retirement System was established. An Early Retirement Incentive bill was passed. The Retirement Board was restructured altering the board membership and establishing a membership council. The Public Safety Noncontributory System was established.

1990s: A 2% formula for all active public employees was implemented, and a 5% formula for Judges. Members allowed to buy future service credit to enable immediate retirement. Judges Noncontributory retirement system is created. Retirement fund posts surpluses. Retirement savings incentives expanded.

2000s: Website www.urs.org was launched and, later in the decade, myURS member login became available for members to manage their personal URS accounts online. Partial lump-sum retirement options were introduced. URS became the 13th largest among the 50 statewide defined contribution plans. Roth and traditional IRAs were added to the URS Savings Plans, and expanded investment options were rolled out. The Personal Choice Retirement Account, provided by Charles Schwab, was introduced for eligible savings plans account holders.

2010s: Tier 2 Retirement Plan was implemented. Robert V. Newman retired. Daniel D. Andersen became executive director.