July 1, 2010

Incentive retirements clear 300 mark

by Anne Krapfl

Iowa State employees continue to apply to participate in a retirement incentive option, although the rate has fallen off.

By the June 1 deadline to apply for the second retirement incentive option (RIO2), 87 employees were approved, including 44 merit employees, 24 professional and scientific staff and 19 faculty. Twelve more employees originally approved for RIO2 were allowed to transfer into the RIO3 program. The requests of 14 employees to participate in RIO2 were denied.

RIO2 participants must retire from Iowa State by July 30.

Details about the retirement incentive programs are on the HR Services website.


The application period for RIO3 ends Aug. 1. As of this week, 32 applications were approved, including 12 merit employees, 16 P&S employees and four faculty members. Participants in RIO3 may choose between a health/dental insurance benefit and a retirement contribution benefit. So far, 18 have opted for the insurance benefit and 14 for the retirement benefit.

RIO3 participants must retire from Iowa State by Dec. 31.

Phased plus

The application window also is open, through April 30, 2011, for another retirement option known as phased plus (PDF). In it, an approved employee receives a reduced appointment for a maximum of two years. At the end of that appointment, the employee has the option of health/dental coverage or retirement contributions for the balance of the five-year phased period. To date, four applications for phased plus have been approved. The phased retirement period for participants in this program must begin by Jan. 1, 2012.


At the direction of university leaders, human resource services staff developed the retirement incentive plans, beginning in March 2009, as one strategy to help units deal with budget reductions.

The university's first two RIO programs produced 293 employee retirements (34 faculty, 121 P&S, 138 merit). A final tally of 206 employees (15 faculty, 97 P&S, 94 merit) participated in the first RIO program, which required retirement from the university by Jan. 31 of this year.