Retirement Monitor - A monthly newsletter for public sector human resources and payroll specialists
 September 2015

From the Treasurer 


Welcome to the newly renovated version of the Retirement Monitor!

A lot of exciting things are happening in our state, as well as at the Department of State Treasurer. As of this writing, the entire department is now settled into our Atlantic Avenue location in Raleigh, where we can better serve our members. We are also launching our new brand for the N.C. Retirement Systems. If you’ve stopped by lately, you will have noticed our new logo and brand called the North Carolina Total Retirement Plans. We feel that the new look and name captures all of the benefits and options the state has to offer our active members, retirees and benefit recipients. We hope you see the new logo and branding as we do…as a symbol for the next decade and beyond.

I could think of no better way to celebrate these new beginnings than with the introduction of a new, interactive format for our main communication vehicle to you, our partners in retirement planning. I hope you like it and I look forward to working with you as we get all employees retirement ready!


NC Saves for Retirement Month

As part of the Department’s retirement readiness initiative, Treasurer Cowell is recognizing October as “North Carolina Saves for Retirement Month,” and launching the NC Total Retirement Readiness Tour. The retirement readiness tours are opportunities for your agency’s employees to attend an area retirement readiness planning event and get information about planning, acting and saving for retirement. 

There is a special break-out Benefit Coordinators Discussion at the Raleigh, Greensboro, and Lumberton events from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This meeting is exclusively for benefit coordinators to talk candidly about personal and employee successes and challenges in retirement planning. 

The NC Total Retirement Readiness Tour will feature:
  • 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.: Vendor Expo
    Employees will have an opportunity to connect with experts from NC Total Retirement Systems, Social Security Administration, NC State Health Plan, and State Employees’ Credit Union. 

  • 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.: Retirement Planning Meeting
    The meeting is designed to walk members step-by-step through the retirement planning process.

  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Benefit Coordinators Discussion (Raleigh, Greensboro, and Lumberton area coordinators only)

Help employees make the most of this experience by encouraging them to bring their Annual Benefits Statement available in ORBIT. Dates and locations are listed below.
  • Oct. 2 – Raleigh - Wake Tech
  • ​Oct. 7 –  Greensboro – Greensboro Coliseum
  • Oct. 20 –  Charlotte – Central Piedmont Community College
  • Oct. 27 – Lumberton – Robeson Community College
We hope that you will join us and share this information with your employees as we focus on retirement readiness in North Carolina.


New Employer Reporting Phone Line

With the recent move to our new location, we have updated our employer reporting phone line. We will strive to continue delivering quality customer service during this transition and the realignment of our Employer Reporting group. We ask that employers continue to use our new number at 1-877-627-3287 and enter option #6 to reach a member of our employer reporting team. If we are experiencing longer than normal wait times, you will still have the option to leave a voice message with our team. 

When to contact the Employer Reporting group:

  • If your agency changes employer reporting contacts
  • If your agency changes banking information related to ORBIT report submission
  • If you are having issues with ORBIT reports prior to report due date
  • If your agency changes reporting vendor software
  • If you have any reporting questions

Our email address will remain the same, and our team can be reached at


Change to State Health Plan Rates for Retirees

Recent legislation regarding a retroactive rate change to the State Health Plan for retirees has increased the employer rate from 5.49% to 5.60%, effective July 1, 2015. The Retirement Systems is asking all state and local agencies who offer State Health Plan coverage to their retirees to make the employer rate change in their system beginning with their October ORBIT Report. The Retirement System will provide retroactive rate invoices to agencies for the months of July, August and September 2015 in one invoice that should be paid upon submission of your October ORBIT Report.


State Health Plan Annual Enrollment

State Health Plan Annual Enrollment will be held October 15-November 18, 2015. Please direct employees to the plan’s website​ to learn more about the 2016 State Health Plan options. 


SECU is Here to Help

State Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) appreciates North Carolina’s dedicated state employees and the vital services they provide to the citizens of our state. SECU is honored to serve as the trusted financial cooperative for state employees and their families, offering a comprehensive line of member-focused, financial products and services. Please encourage your colleagues to visit SECU’s website,, or contact a local branch for more information on how the Credit Union can assist them.


Employer Spotlight

The North Ca​rolina Department of State Treasurer would like to commend Neuse Charter School for assisting their employees in reaching retirement readiness by recently adopting the NC 401(k) and the NC 457 Plans. After the school hosted a group presentation, 70 out of 75 school employees decided to join the plans and start saving for a more comfortable retirement. The state applauds Neuse Charter School in taking this pro-active step and truly values our partnership!


Interested in Employer Training?​

The Retirem​ent Systems Division is offering employer training in Carthage, Troy and Raleigh in October. Click here​ and scroll down to view the subjects, dates and times.