<p>As part of a comprehensive campuswide effort to reduce its 2010-11 budget, Brown University is offering eligible employees a lump-sum retirement payment and an additional payment to help with the transition to retirement.</p>

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Brown University is offering eligible non-faculty employees an incentive to consider early retirement from the University workforce. The Voluntary Staff Retirement Incentive Program, available from Monday, Nov. 9, through Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2009, includes a lump-sum payment equal to one year’s base pay and an additional $15,000 lump-sum payment to assist employees with their transition to retirement.

The retirement incentive is part of a current Universitywide effort to reduce Brown's projected $30-million deficit for the 2010-11 academic year. It is available to all current non-faculty employees who:

  • will be at least 60 years old by June 30, 2010;
  • have worked continuously for the University for at least 10 years;
  • work in positions that are at least half-time; and
  • are in union positions or in positions ranked 13 or lower on Brown’s 15-level position evaluation scale.

“Many Brown employees have asked whether the administration would include a program like this as part of the University’s effort to reduce expenses next year,” said Elizabeth Huidekoper, vice president for finance and administration. “We have developed this program to help interested employees make the transition to retirement and maintain health insurance until they qualify for Medicare coverage.”

Employees who choose to accept early retirement will receive:

  • one year of salary, subject to state and federal taxes, paid as a lump sum;
  • a $15,000 lump-sum payment to support the transition to retirement (for financial planning, health care, etc.); and
  • the option to continue in Brown’s health insurance plan until age 65, paying the full premium. The University would contribute $83 per month through its Pre-Medicare Subsidy program.

The University announced the incentive program to employees by e-mail today. Employees who qualify for the incentive — approximately 260 people in the current workforce — will have access to information sessions and one-on-one retirement counseling and will receive information packets and periodic reminders until Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2009, when the 45-day enrollment period ends.

All employees who sign the participation agreement will have a specified period of time in which to reconsider or rescind the agreement. Employees may choose to retire on April 15 or June 30, 2010.

“The program honors the contributions of long-time Brown employees,” Huidekoper said. Eligible employees will want to consult with their own advisers and with the University’s Human Resources Office to determine whether the incentive is right for their circumstances. The decision is entirely in the hands of employees.”