A. The board of visitors or other governing body of any public institution of higher education may establish a compensation plan designed to provide incentives for voluntary early retirement of teaching and research staff employed in nonclassified, faculty positions. Participation in such compensation plan shall be voluntary for eligible employees and no employee shall be penalized in any way for not participating.
B. In order to qualify for participation in such compensation plan, an eligible faculty employee shall (i) be at least 60 years of age; (ii) have completed at least 10 years of full-time service at the institution offering the plan; (iii) have been awarded tenure or have a contractual right to continued employment; (iv) agree to withdraw from active membership in the Virginia Retirement System; and (v) comply with any additional criteria established by the governing body of the institution.
C. Any compensation plan established pursuant to this section shall include the institutional needs and objectives to be served, the kind of incentives to be offered, the sources of available funding for implementation, and any additional qualifications required of eligible faculty employees established by the governing body of the institution. Any such compensation plan shall explicitly reserve to the governing body of the institution the authority to modify, amend or repeal the plan. However, no such amendment, modification or repeal shall be effective as to any individual who retires under the plan prior to the effective date of the amendment, modification or repeal.
D. The cash payments offered under any such compensation plan shall not exceed 150 percent of the employee’s base annual salary reflected in the Personnel Management Information System at the time of election to participate. Any such payment shall be allocated over at least two years. Such compensation may include payment of insurance benefits by the institution until the participant reaches the age of 65. The total cost in any fiscal year for any compensation plan established under this section shall not exceed one percent of the institution’s corresponding fiscal year state general fund appropriation for faculty salaries and associated benefits.
E. The Governor may establish, with the assistance of the State Council of Higher Education, uniform criteria for such compensation plans. Prior to the adoption, modification, amendment or repeal of any such compensation plan, the Governor’s approval shall be obtained by the governing body of the institution. The Governor shall provide a copy of each approved plan to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Appropriations and the Senate Committee on Finance. All compensation plans shall be reviewed for legal sufficiency by the Office of the Attorney General prior to adoption, modification, amendment or repeal.
F. The Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.) shall not apply to the establishment of such compensation plans or any implementing regulations or criteria.
1988, c. 246; 2005, c. 633.