Art. 6243d-1. POLICEMEN'S RELIEF AND RETIREMENT FUND.
Sec. 1. CREATION OF FUND; DEFINITIONS. There is hereby created in all incorporated cities in this State having a population of two hundred and ninety thousand (290,000), or more, according to the preceding Federal Census, a fund to be known as the policemen's relief and retirement fund. Said fund shall be administered in each such city by a board to be known as the policemen's relief and retirement board.
The expression "pension fund," as used herein, shall mean the policemen's relief and retirement fund. The expression "pension board," as used in this Act, means the policemen's relief and retirement board of each such city. All members of the police department of any such city shall participate in said pension fund, and shall be subject to all of the provisions of this Act, save and except special officers, part-time officers, janitors, car washers, and cooks. With the exceptions just named, it is the intention hereof to include everyone who is designated by any such city as a member of said police department, regardless of the particular duty or duties performed by such person. The expressions "member" and "members," as used in this Act, mean members of any such police department who are entitled to participate in said pension fund as above set forth, that is, the entire personnel of any such police department, save and except special officers, part-time officers, janitors, car washers, and cooks, in each city.
Sec. 2. PENSION BOARD. Said pension board in each such city shall consist of one person to be appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the city council or governing body of such city, the city controller, or, if there be no city controller, then the person discharging the duties of the city controller in such city, and three (3) persons to be elected from the police department by the members. As soon as practicable after the effective date of this Act, said members of each such police department shall elect said three (3) members of said pension board, one to be elected until the next succeeding January 1st thereafter, and two (2) to be elected until the second January 1st following such election, and thereafter, as the terms expire, new members to said pension board shall be similarly elected to hold office until the second January 1st following their respective elections. In case of vacancies, new members shall be elected to serve the unexpired term. All persons elected to said pension board shall hold office until their successors are elected and qualified. Any member shall be eligible to election to said pension board.
Said pension board shall annually elect a chairman, vice-chairman, and a secretary, from the members of said pension board. Each one so elected, shall serve until his successor is elected.
A meeting of said pension board may be called at any time by the chairman, secretary, or by any two (2) members of such pension board. Three (3) members of said pension board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.
Each member of said pension board shall take an oath that he will well and faithfully perform the duties of a member of such pension board.
No moneys shall be paid out of the pension fund except upon an order by said pension board, duly entered in the minutes.
Sec. 3. TREASURER OF PENSION FUND. The city treasurer of any such city, or the person discharging the duties of the city treasurer, is hereby designated as the treasurer of the said pension fund for said city, and his official bond to said city shall operate to cover his position of treasurer of said pension fund. All moneys of every kind and character collected or to be collected for said fund, shall be paid over to said treasurer, and shall be administered and paid out only in accordance with the provisions of this Act.
Sec. 4. PER CAPITA CONTRIBUTIONS. Commencing with the next calendar month, immediately following the effective date of this Act, per capita contributions of all such members of each such police department as participate in such fund, as aforesaid, shall be made to said fund. Said monthly per capita contribution shall be made as follows: The salary and future salary of each member participating in such fund is hereby reduced Three Dollars ($3) per month, but said Three Dollars ($3) per month shall be paid by such city into the said pension fund. No other money paid into said pension fund, however, shall be counted as a part of salary, under any law or ordinance fixing or pertaining to salaries of members, of any such police department.
Sec. 5. ACCUMULATED FUNDS. In all such cities where a general pension fund for city employees has been accumulated but has not been put into operation at the effective date of this Act, the governing body of each such city shall segregate from said fund, the proportion which the total number of members of the police department (eligible to said pension fund) bears to the entire number of all city employees, for whose benefit said fund was accumulated, and shall set aside such sum into the policemen's relief and retirement fund.
Sec. 6. ASSIGNMENTS OF SALARY TO FUND. Any members who have or may have any back or past due salary due them, from any such city, may assign all or any portion of such back salary to said pension fund, and such assignments as have or may hereafter be executed by any such members, are hereby validated and shall be recognized by the governing body of any such city, and such sums, if any, shall be paid into the said pension fund.
Sec. 7. APPROPRIATIONS TO FUND OUT OF GENERAL FUNDS OF CITY. Any such city may make additional appropriations from time to time out of its general fund, or otherwise, into the said pension fund, and hereafter when any such city shall make any appropriations for pensions of city employees or place any money into any such account, the proportionate amount thereof shall be placed in the policemen's relief and retirement fund. Said pension fund may also be augmented as follows: By the giving of entertainments and benefit performances; by gifts or donations from any person, firm, or corporation; all rewards hereafter paid to or due individual members for, or on account of service rendered by them as members of the police department, shall be paid into such fund; and said pension fund shall also participate in funds otherwise provided or that shall hereafter be provided by law pertaining to police pensions of cities of the class herein provided for.
Sec. 8. INVESTMENT OF SURPLUS FUNDS. Whenever, in the opinion of the said pension board, there is on hand in said pension fund, a surplus over and above a reasonably safe amount to take care of current demands upon such funds, such surplus, or so much thereof as in the judgment of the said pension board is deemed proper, may be invested in securities of the United States, the State of Texas, or of counties, school districts, or municipal corporations. No investment shall be made, however, which does not meet with the approval of the city controller, if any, of such city.
Sec. 9. BENEFITS TO BEGIN NOT PRIOR TO JANUARY 1, 1942. No benefits of any kind shall be paid out of said fund prior to January 1, 1942.
Sec. 10. PENSION RATES. From and after January 1, 1942, any member who shall have been a member of such police department for the period of twenty-five (25) years, and who shall have reached the age of fifty (50) years, shall be entitled to a retirement pension of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month for the rest of his life upon his retirement from said police department. Upon the completion of the said twenty-five (25) years of service, such pension board shall issue to him a certificate showing that he is entitled to said retirement pension, and thereafter, when such member retires from the police department, whether such retirement be voluntary or involuntary, such monthly payments shall forthwith begin, and continue for the remainder of said member's life. Provided, however, that payments shall not commence until such member is fifty (50) years of age, and further provided that members who are eligible for a pension but who continue in the department shall make their per capita contributions until they retire from the department.
In computing the twenty-five (25) years service required for retirement pension, interruption of less than one year out of service, shall be construed as continuous service and such period out of service shall not be deducted from the twenty-five (25) years, but if out for more than one year and less than five (5) years, credit shall be given for prior service, but deduction made for the length of time out of service. If out of service more than five (5) years, no previous service prior to said time shall be counted.
Service with any such city in some other department, prior to January 1, 1939, shall be included in the twenty-five (25) years above provided for, but service after January 1, 1939, must be in the police department. The pension board may, within its discretion, provide for the payment of such retirement pension to a former member or members of the police department who have heretofore served for the twenty-five-year period and who have reached the age of fifty (50) years, and it is the intention hereof to include in the group of former members those who have heretofore been retired by any such city and who are drawing partial pay or compensation from such city.
Sec. 11. DISABILITY RESULTING FROM PERFORMANCE OF DUTY. If any member shall become totally or permanently disabled as a direct and proximate result of the performance of duties in the police department, said member shall be retired on a pension of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month.
By total and permanent disability is meant such disability as permanently incapacitates a member from performing the usual and customary duties of a police officer.
Before any retirement on disability pension is made, the pension board shall require such medical examination and such other evidence as it may see fit to establish such total and permanent disability, as above provided.
When any member has been retired for total and permanent disability, he shall be subject at all times to re-examination by the pension board and shall submit himself to such further examination as the pension board may require. If any member shall refuse to submit himself to any such examination, the pension board may within its discretion, order said payment stopped. If a member who has been retired under the provision of this Section, should thereafter recover so that in the opinion of the pension board, he is able to perform the usual and customary duties of a police officer, and such member is reinstated or tendered reinstatement in the police department, then the pension board shall order such payments stopped.
Said pension board may, at its discretion, retire on said permanent and total disability pension, those members of said police department who have heretofore become totally and permanently disabled, as that term is above defined.
Sec. 12. DEATH RESULTING FROM PERFORMANCE OF DUTY. Should any such member die, as a direct and proximate result of injuries received or sickness incurred in line of duty in said police department, the pension board shall order paid to the beneficiaries hereinafter designated, the sum of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month for a period of ten (10) years. Such beneficiaries shall be as follows: The surviving wife, surviving children under the age of sixteen (16) years, and the dependent parent or parents, if any. If there be neither surviving wife, children under the age of sixteen (16) years, nor dependent parents, then no payments shall be made on account of the death of any such member. If there be a surviving wife, but no children under the age of sixteen (16) years, then the entire payment of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be made to such surviving wife. If there be a surviving wife and children under the age of sixteen (16) years, then the payments shall be Thirty-seven Dollars and Fifty Cents ($37.50) per month to the wife and Thirty-seven Dollars and Fifty Cents ($37.50) per month payable to the legal guardian of such children, to be administered in accordance with the orders of the Probate Court. As each child becomes sixteen (16) years of age, the children's part of Thirty-seven Dollars and Fifty Cents ($37.50) per month shall thereafter be for the use and benefit of the children who then remain under the age of sixteen (16) years. When there are no longer any children under the age of sixteen (16) years, the entire amount of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be paid the surviving wife. When there is no surviving wife, but there are surviving children under the age of sixteen (16) years, the entire Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be paid to the legal guardian of such children under the age of sixteen (16) years, but such payment shall not be made for or on account of any child after said child reaches the age of sixteen (16) years. Should such surviving wife thereafter die, then the entire Seventy-five Dollars ($75) shall likewise be paid for the benefit of such children as remain under the age of sixteen (16) years. If there be neither a surviving wife nor surviving children under the age of sixteen (16), then such payments shall be made to the dependent parent, or parents, if any, of such deceased member. If there be two (2) dependent parents, then the Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be divided equally between them, but if there be only one dependent parent, the Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be paid to said parent.
The term "dependent parent" means a parent who is principally dependent upon said member for a livelihood.
By the term "surviving wife" is meant the woman, if any, who is the lawful wife of said member at the time of his death.
No death benefits whatever shall be paid after the expiration of ten (10) years from the death of any said member, and no beneficiary shall ever receive more than Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month.
In the event of women members of the department, their surviving husbands shall be entitled to the same rights and benefits as have the wives of the male members.
Sec. 13. PENSION TO DEPENDENTS, WHEN. When any member who has been retired upon pension, whether retirement pension or disability pension, or when any member who has a pension certificate shall thereafter die from any cause, his pension of Seventy-five Dollars ($75) per month shall be payable to his dependents, if any, as is provided in the next preceding Section hereof, but only for the unexpired portion of ten (10) years. In computing said ten (10) years, such length of time as a pension may have been paid to said member during his lifetime shall be deducted from such ten-year period, and such dependents shall receive said payment only for the unexpired term of ten (10) years.
Sec. 14. REFUNDS ON LEAVING SERVICE. If any such member shall leave such police department either voluntarily or involuntarily before he is entitled to a pension, he shall have refunded to him the deductions from his salary, which have been paid into said pension fund. Said payments may be made to him, either in a lump sum or on a monthly basis, as may be determined by the pension board.
Provided, however, that this Section shall be subject to Section 10 and upon a re-entry into the department all such refunds shall be paid back into the pension fund or prior service of such member shall not be counted toward his retirement pension.
Sec. 15. REDUCTION OF BENEFITS AUTHORIZED IN CASE FUND IS DEPLETED. In the event said pension fund becomes seriously depleted, in the opinion of the pension board, said pension board may proportionately and temporarily reduce the benefits of all pensioners and beneficiaries, but such reductions shall thereafter be paid to such pensioners or beneficiaries as and when said fund is, in the opinion of the pension board, sufficiently re-established to do so.
Sec. 16. LEGAL COUNSEL FOR BOARD. The city attorney of any such city shall render such legal service, and without additional compensation, as such pension board may request him to do. The pension board may, if it deems necessary, employ additional legal assistance and pay reasonable compensation therefor, out of said police pension fund. Said pension board, may at its discretion, from time to time, employ the services of an actuary, and pay him reasonable compensation out of said police pension fund.
Sec. 17. PENSIONS NOT SUBJECT TO EXECUTION, ETC. No portion of any such pension fund, either before or after its order of disbursement by said pension board, and no amounts due or to become due any beneficiary or pensioner, under this Act, shall ever be held, seized, taken, subjected to, detained, or levied upon by virtue of any execution, attachment, garnishment, injunction, or other writ, and no order or decree, or any process or proceeding whatsoever, shall issue out of or by any Court of this State for the payment or satisfaction in whole or in part out of said pension fund, of any debt, damage, claim, demand, or judgment against any such members, pensioners, dependents, or any person whomsoever, nor shall such police pension fund or any part thereof, or any claim thereto be directly or indirectly assigned or transferred and any attempt to transfer or assign the same or any part thereof, or any claim thereto, shall be void. Said fund shall be sacredly held, kept, and disbursed for the purposes provided by this Act, and for no other purposes whatsoever.
Sec. 18. SEVERABILITY CLAUSE. If any provision, section, part, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or paragraph of this Act be declared invalid or unconstitutional, the same shall not affect any other portion or provision hereof and all other provisions shall remain valid and unaffected by any invalid portion, if any.
Sec. 19. ACT TO BE CUMULATIVE TO OTHER LAWS. The provisions hereof shall be cumulative of and in addition to all other laws relating to pensions, which laws are hereby preserved and continued in force and effect, provided, however, that in the event of any conflict, the provisions of this law shall control, and police departmental pensions in the cities covered by this Act shall be administered in accordance with this law.
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Last modified: September 28, 2016