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Tacoma Employees' Retirement System

The Tacoma Employees' Retirement System (TERS) is a defined benefit plan covering employees of the City of Tacoma and other Member Public Agencies. It is funded by employee and employer contributions, as well as investment returns.


An Update for Our Valued Members and Retirees

The Tacoma Employees’ Retirement System (TERS) office is closely monitoring the financial markets during the current COVID-19 pandemic. While market fluctuations at this time may be causing you worry, please be assured that market losses do not affect your TERS benefit payments. Your TERS retirement is secure, and benefit payments to retirees and beneficiaries will continue to be made in a timely manner.


As a long-term investor that has weathered multiple economic cycles, TERS is financially stable, maintaining its commitment to a broadly diversified portfolio. We will continue to keep a close eye on the plan’s investments in relation to the current market environment and, as new information becomes available, that information will be shared at cityoftacoma.org/retirement.


While we are committed to safeguarding your TERS retirement, we are also committed to safeguarding your health and safety as you interact with our office.


As the City of Tacoma works with local, state and federal partners to closely monitor developments relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, the TERS office is currently observing Governor Jay Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” Order, directing all Washington residents to shelter at home and limit movements outside of their homes beyond essential needs. 

In-Person Customer Support Suspended at This Time

The TERS office is located within the Tacoma Public Utilities (3628 S. 35th St.) building. This building is closed to the public – and TERS staff is suspending in-person customer support, in-person meetings and in-person educational programming – until further notice.


Should you have any questions or concerns during this time period, retirement specialists are available to assist you by phone or email. 

Phone Customer Support
  • (253) 502-8700 (for LEOFF 1 members and retirees only; no option to leave voicemail)
  • (253) 502-8200 (for all members and retirees; with option to leave voicemail)
  • (888) 404-3787 (toll-free for a members and retirees; with option to leave voicemail)

Voicemail Tip: When leaving a voicemail, please provide a brief, high level description of your needs to ensure your call is routed to the most appropriate staff member, and be sure to leave your full name and phone number with area code. 

Email Customer Support

In accordance with information security best practices, please do not leave your social security number on voicemails or emails.

TERS also offers a variety of online resources at cityoftacoma.org/retirement.


Online Resources

For the most up-to-date information about the City’s response to COVID-19 from a community perspective, please check the City’s “What’s Going On” section of the website.


For more information about COVID-19 from Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, go to TPCHD.org/coronavirus.


Retirement Planning Sessions Are Back-Schedule for Spring 2020


10 Key Retirement Questions/Healthcare Costs in Retirement

When: Thursday, April 23 from 5 to 6:30 PM – Register today!


Description: Nearing retirement, or transitioning through it, should be rewarding but can be challenging.  To help guide you, James Reinke (ICMA-RC)l will focus on ten key questions you should ask, starting with what retirement actually means for you.


Medicare 101

When: Thursday, April 30 from 5 to 6:30 PM – Register today!


Description: Jenny Stark from Regence will help you gain the knowledge needed to make informed decisions and pick a plan that works best for you when the time comes. You’ll learn about:

  • Basics of Social Security
  • When you should enroll into Original Medicare Parts A & B
  • How to avoid Part B and Part D penalties
  • The difference between Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans
  • What is the Part D prescription coverage gap (otherwise known as the “donut hole”)
  • What you should know if you’re still working and participating in an employer-sponsored plan when you turn 65
  • What you need to know if you’re currently participating in a Health Savings Account (HSA) and are, or soon will be, eligible for Medicare

Social Security 101

When: Thursday, May 7 from 4 to 5:30 PM

There is not a registration link for this webinar. So, please save this event on your calendar (see attachment) and click on this link to join the webinar at 4 PM on May 7. (Meeting ID: 969 022 726; Password: May-SSA)


Description: Kirk Larson is a Washington public affairs representative for the Social Security Administration. He will answer all of your Social Security questions, including (but not limited to):

  • When you are eligible to receive retirement benefits
  • How early retirement affects your benefits
  • How do get the most from your benefit
  • What the future of Social Security looks like

We recommend that you familiarize yourself with the “my Social Security” online services prior to this presentation. To do so, go to ssa.gov/myaccount to create an account and print out your Social Security Statement before attending this webinar.


Contact Us

If you have questions, contact Shannon Carmody, MSHN, Wellness Coordinator in the City of Tacoma Compensation & Benefits Division. Or visit wellness.cityoftacoma.org or tew.redbrickhealth.com.


2020 Cost of Living Adjustment for TERS Retirees

Please see the Cost of Living Adjustment Letter for information regarding the 2020 Cost of Living Adjustment.