Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Information

State Employees' Retirement System (SERS)
FOIA Information 5 ILCS 140/4(a)

If you are an SERS member and have questions about your benefits, you do not have to submit a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to receive an answer from SERS. Please contact SERS for any membership inquiries and we will direct your call to the appropriate staff member.

Submitting Requests & Response Time:

SERS accepts FOIA requests through mail and email. SERS responds to all public record requests in compliance with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140. If any requested records will be used for a commercial purpose, this must be disclosed when submitting the request. SERS responds to non-commercial record requests within five business days and within 21 days for all commercial requests. SERS business hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CST, Monday through Friday. SERS observes all state holidays. A record request is considered received on the next business day if submitted during non-business hours or on a State holiday.

Jeff Houch
State Retirement Systems
2101 S. Veterans Parkway
Springfield, IL 62794-9255
Jeff.Houch@srs.illinois.gov

Fees:

SERS does not charge a fee for requesting electronic or most paper records. SERS will provide records in an electronic format whenever possible to reduce printing costs associated with FOIA requests.

Brief Description of the State Employees’ Retirement System:

The following information is provided in compliance with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140/4.
The State Employees’ Retirement System was established as a public employee retirement system by State statute on January 1, 1944 for the purpose of providing an orderly means whereby aged or disabled employees may retire from active service, without hardship or prejudice, and to enable them to accumulate reserves for themselves and their dependents for old age, disability, death and termination of employment, thus affecting the economy and efficiency in the administration of State government. The System’s enabling legislation is in the Illinois Pension Code at 40 ILCS 5/14-101.

Key Statutory Provisions:

SERS benefits are governed by Articles 1, 14, and 20 of the Illinois Pension Code, 40 ILCS 5/1, 40 ILCS 5/14, and 40 ILCS 5/20. SERS administrative rules are in Title 80, Subtitle D, Chapter I, Part 1540 of the Illinois Administrative Code. SERS is also subject to other laws, rules and regulations as an agency of the State of Illinois.

Membership:

SERS members fall into the following categories: active, inactive, annuitant, survivor or disability recipient. Active members are current State employees that are contributing to SERS. As of June 30, 2020, there were 62,621 active contributing members.

Inactive members have service credit in the System but are no longer contributing to SERS. As of June 30, 2020, there were 27,252 inactive members

Annuitants are persons receiving a retirement annuity. Beneficiaries are persons receiving a survivor benefit. As of June 30, 2020, there were 61,819 annuitants and 11,613 survivor beneficiaries.

Disability recipients are members receiving an occupational or non-occupation disability benefit. At June 30, 2020 there were 1,923 SERS members receiving disability benefits.

Operating Budget:

The SERS operating budget for fiscal year 2021 is $19,291,324,. During fiscal year 2020, SERS administered $2.7 billion in retirement, survivor and disability benefits. At June 30, 2020, SERS had $19.4 billion available for benefits.

Offices:

The System has two office locations. The System’s main office is located at 2101 S. Veterans Parkway, Springfield, IL 62704. A field service office is located within the Michael A. Bilandic Building at 160 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60601.

Employees:

Per the Pension Code, the Board of Trustees employs an Executive Secretary responsible for the administration of the System. SERS has approximately 100 full-time staff and consists of the Administrative Services Division, the Field Services Division, the Claims Division, the Accounting Division and Social Security Unit, the Information Technology Division, the Human Resources Division, and the Executive Office. Below you will find a block diagram showing the functional subdivisions of the SERS Administration.


SERS Org Chart

Board Information:

A 13-member board of trustees is responsible for the general administration of the System as authorized by 40 ILCS 5/14-134. The SERS Board of Trustees consists of thirteen members. The Trustees include the Illinois Comptroller, six trustees appointed by the Governor, four active trustees elected by SERS members and two trustees elected by SERS retirees. The Board has several Committees including the Executive Committee, The Rules & Personnel Committee and the Audit & Compliance Committee. Quarterly Board meeting agendas and meeting minutes can be found on the SERS website. SERS Board of Trustees.

Investments:

The Illinois State Board of Investment (ISBI) has the fiduciary responsibility for managing the pension assets of the General Assembly Retirement System, the Judges’ Retirement System, and the State Employees’ Retirement System of Illinois. The ISBI maintains a wide diversification of investments within the ISBI Commingled Fund which is intended to reduce overall risk and increase returns. Each Chairperson from the SERS, GARS and JRS Board of Trustees serves as a member of ISBI. The Illinois State Board of Investment is located at:

Illinois State Board of Investment
180 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2015
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 793-5718
www.isbinvestment.com/

List of Records Immediately Available From the State Employees’ Retirement System:

General and detailed information about SERS is available on the SERS Home Page, such as retirement publications and brochures, financial and actuarial information and reports, tax information, general contact information and office hours, Board meeting minutes and agenda, active member and retiree newsletters, and frequently asked questions pertaining to membership and benefits. In addition, the System makes the following records immediately available to the public:

  • Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports
  • Annual Financial Report Summaries
  • Board of Trustee Meeting Minutes
  • Annual Actuarial Valuations
  • Member, Retiree, and Survivor Handbooks & Publications
  • Various Benefit Packets & SERS Forms