Angel Tree

Commission Timeline


1943

1945

  • The South Carolina Retirement System was officially established to create a cost-sharing multiple-employer defined benefit pension plan.

1950

  • The SC Budget and Control Board was created by Reorganization Plan No. 2 and grew out of the South Carolina Preparedness for Peace Commission’s 1945 recommendations to merge existing state government functions under a new “Finance Committee” consisting of the governor and the chairmen of the two budget-writing committees.
  • The Budget and Control Board invested in domestic fixed income only.

1995

  • Actuarial assumptions changed to remove provisions for future cost of living adjustments (“COLAs”).
  • Actuarial assumptions changed to lower the assumed rate from 8.00 percent to 7.25 percent.
  • Funded ratio jumps from 80.7 percent to 88.2 percent.

1997

  • The Retirement Systems Investment Panel was created to advise and recommend an investment strategy for the Budget Control Board.
  • Voters approved a referendum allowing pension funds to be invested in equities, or stocks.
  • The State Treasurer’s Office responsibile for the bond portion of the portfolio.

1999

  • SCRS employee contribution is 6 percent of salary, employer contribution is 7.55 percent.**
  • Funded ratio is 98.9 percent
  • PORS employee contribution is 6.50 percent, employer contribution is 10.30 percent.**

2000

2001

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.

2002

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.

2003

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.

2004

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.

2005

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.
  • Automatic COLA increase.
  • Funded ratio drops from 80.3 percent to 71.6 percent.
  • Unfunded liability amortization period reaches 30 years, the maximum allowed under State law before contribution rates must increase.
  • Act 153, the South Carolina State Retirement System Preservation and Investment Reform Act, created the Retirement System Investment Commission.
  • Up to 70 percent of the plan was allowed to be invested in equities and stocks.

2006

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.
  • Employer contribution increases to 8.20 percent.**

2007

  • Ad hoc COLA increase.
  • The passage of a constitutional amendment was approved by voters which deleted the restriction on equity investment in foreign equities.
  • Employer contribution increases to 9.21 percent.**

2008

  • The global financial crisis delivers a huge blow to pension systems nationwide, including the Retirement System.
  • Actuarial assumptions changed to smooth asset losses over a 10-year period instead of a 5-year period.
  • Actuarial assumptions changed to raise the assumed rate from 7.25 percent to 8.00 percent.
  • Automatic COLA increase.
  • Ad Hoc COLA increase.
  • SCRS employee contribution increases to 6.5 percent, employer contribution increases to 9.39 percent.**

2009

  • PORS employee contribution remains at 6.50 percent, employer contribution increases to 10.65 percent.**

2010

  • ESCRS employer contribution increases to 9.68 percent.**
  • PORS employee contribution remain at 6.50 percent, employer contributions increases to 11.13 percent. **

2011

  • SCRS employee contribution increases to 7.5 percent, employer contribution increases to 10.60 percent.**
  • PORS employee contribution remain at 6.5o percent, employer actuarially determined employer contributions increase to 12.30 percent.**

2012

  • Pension reform Act 278 enacted, which sunset the TERI program in 2018, created different retirement eligibility criteria for new participants entering SCRS after 6/30/2012, and limited future COLAs, among other things. Act 278 also created Public Employee Benefit Authority (PEBA) combining the South Carolina Retirement Systems and the Employee Insurance Program. PEBA was created to administer the various retirement plans under the umbrella of the Retirement Systems.
  • SCRS employee contribution increases to 8 percent, employer contribution increases to 10.90 percent.**
  • PORS employee contribution increases to 8.41 percent, employer actuarially determined employer contributions increase to 13.41 percent.**
  • Legislature lowers the expected return on investment from 8 percent to 7.5 percent and lawmakers limited COLA increases for retirees.

2013

  • SCRS employee contribution increases to 8.16 percent, employer contribution increases to 11.06 percent.**
  • PORS employee contribution increases to 8.74 percent, employer actuarially determined employer contributions increase to 13.74 percent.**
  • TERI closes to new entrance.

2014

2015

  • Employee contribution increases to 8.19 percent of their salaries.**
  • Employer contribution increases to 11.09 percent.**

2016

  • Employee contribution increases to 8.66 percent of their salaries.**
  • Employer contribution increases to 11.56 percent.**
  • The State Fiscal Accountability Authority approved a 0.5 percent increase in employee and employer contributions. Employees contribution increased to 8.66 percent of salaries.
  • The Joint Committee on Pension Systems Review is created to address the funding challenges.
  • Funded ratio is 59.5 percent.

2017

  • The Retirement System Funding and Administration Act of 2017 passes.
  • Employee rates for SCRS will increase to 9 percent. Employer rates for SCRS increases to 13.56 percent with a 1 percent increase per year over the next six years to cap at 18.56 percent.
  • Employee rates for PORS will increase to 9.75 percent. Employer rates for PORS increases to 16.24 percent with a 1 percent increase per year over the next six years to cap at 21.24 percent.
  • The assumed rate of return changed from 7.50 percent to 7.25 percent.


*TERI/28 encompasses 2 distinct benefit improvements. This link only describes TERI, not the 28 portion of reform, which lowered the retirement eligibility service period from 30 to 28 years.
**Contribution rates shown represent the actuarially determined contribution rates taken from a given fiscal year’s actuarial valuation report. There is a 2-year delay in implementation of a contribution rate increase from the date of valuation, following Board approval.