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AFT-NH Legislative Alert (February 5, 2023)

Action Alert


On Tuesday, the NH Senate Finance committee will begin discussing SB57: relative to the reduction in the calculation of state retirement annuities at age 65.  This bill is one we have seen several times in the last few years because it moves the 10% reduction Group I members receive in their pension benefit at age 65 to social security age, which currently is 67. 

Below there is a link to talking points with historical information as well as an email/call template for your outreach  Most importantly, this year we are the CLOSEST to passing such legislation and WE NEED YOUR HELP! 

Please take a moment to email and call the members of the Senate Finance committee who will vote on this bill next week. This  bill impacts ALL active Group I members, but those closest to retiring could see an impact very soon. This bill would allow you to collect 20% more pension benefit between age 65-67.

Currently, the average Group I benefit average is approximately $20,000. This would mean if passed a Group I member will be able to collect an additional $4,000 between age 65 and 67 that they currently lose due to this law. 

The Senate Executive Departments and Administration Committee voted this bill Ought to Pass, 5-0 citing the fairness issue and important financial impact this bill will make for our Group I retirees.  Please email or call the Senate Finance committee to follow the path of the ED&A committee and pass this bill to send it forward to the full Senate for a vote. 

NH Retirement Security Coalition   AFT-NH is a proud member of the NH Retirement Security Coalition, a group of stakeholders committed to protecting hard-earned retirement benefits earned by our public employees. Thank you to NHRSC for preparing this detailed information on SB 57.

Communication Tips for Contacting the Senate Finance Committee:

Dear Senate Finance Committee Members,

Thank you for your service and thank you for taking the time to read my correspondence today. (add your personal story here, where you live, where you work or the type of job you do)  I am writing to ask for your support on SB57-FN: relative to the reduction in the calculation of state retirement annuities at age 65.

Currently, all Group I members receive a 10% reduction in their retirement benefit at the age of 65. Legislative history would show that this reduction was once linked to social security eligibility age. In the late 1980s this link was broken. Afterwards, the 10% reduction took place at age 65 no matter what social security eligibility age would become. Now that social security age eligibility is as late as age 67, there is a 2-year timeframe in which my benefit will be reduced by 10%, but I won’t be able to collect social security. (Insert here this 10% reduction will impact you and your family financially and how connecting it to social security age eligibility would impact you and your family.)

SB57-FN returns the original intent of the reduction to social security age eligibility and relinks the reduction and collection of social security to the same time. It will prevent members like myself from receiving a reduction in my pension without the ability to collect social security. Thank you for your consideration of my viewpoint on this matter. I want to emphasize the importance of what SB57-FN would be mean to me and my family and the thousands and thousands of other Group I members who committed their careers to public service here in NH.


Name and Town

Facts Regarding the 10% Reduction for Group I Members at 65 Years of Age

  • This was a large discussion of the 2017 Governor’s Decennial Commission on Retirement in which the Coalition provided information and testimony on why the reduction should be eliminated or at least linked to the actual age of social security. You can access that information here on our website: 207 DECENNIAL COMMISSION
  •  Following the commission, the NH Retirement Security Coalition helped introduce HB 1427 in 2018 to link the reduction to social security age as a first step. We were nearly successful, but the bill became overly amended and was not able to pass the full Senate. You can access that bill and its history here: HB 1757
  •  We tried again in 2020 to introduce the same bill from 2018. This bill passed the full House out of the policy committee, but due to COVID-19 and the changes for that legislative session, it did not make it out of the House Finance committee for further action. You can find that bill and its history here: HB 1205-FN
  •  In 2022, SB434-FN was introduced and received support but was defeated due to it being a non-budge year. Many members of the Senate indicated they would support it during the next budget cycle (2023).


• At age 65 Group I members get hit with 10% reduction to their retirement benefit. A 10% reduction can make a significant impact to a retiree’s benefit (i.e., a $30,000 pension becomes a $27,000 benefit at 65).

 • Prior to 1988, Group I retiree benefits were linked to federal social security benefits and a retiree’s benefit was calculated using an equation taking both benefits into account. In 1988, the legislature removed this linkage but kept the 10% reduction at 65.

• Now that the age of social security has risen to 67, Group I members are still getting hit with the reduction without receiving social security.

 • Right now, an employee’s benefit is 1/60th of their average final compensation (AFC) prior to 65, at age 65 it becomes 1/66th of their AFC.

 • Intent of previous legislation has been to connect 10% reduction to the age in which the member will begin to collect social security. So, while they are still hit with a 10% reduction, they will receive their social security benefit at the same time to offset this reduction. Aligning the reduction with social security will lessen this impact slightly.


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You can also read written testimony submitted to the legislature at STATE HOUSE NEWS.


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