Yesterday, Governor Brad Little signed House Bill 499 into law, making it possible for Idaho Emergency Communications Officers (ECO) (also known as 911 dispatchers) to qualify for retirement with the “Rule of 80” through Public Employees Retirement System of Idaho (PERSI).
Since the mid-1980’s, dispatchers have qualified for PERSI retirement under the Rule of 90 (years of service plus age of individual to equal 90 to qualify for full retirement benefits). The new rule will match the retirement benefits of police and firefighters, aligning first responders under this same retirement category.
Nampa Police Chief Joe Huff said, “It is an exciting day for first responders in Idaho as they become eligible for the Rule of 80. Dispatchers are often the first to handle critical, emergency calls, and they are required to work the same shifts as the police officers. This retirement change has taken years of hard work to accomplish, and we are extremely thankful to the legislators and Governor Little for backing the blue in Idaho.”
Rep. Greg Cheney (R-Caldwell) carried the bill and the Idaho Sheriffs’ Association and the Idaho Chiefs of Police Association were both in full support of this bill.
Mayor Kling said, “The City of Nampa is extremely fortunate to have dedicated 911 dispatchers and an excellent dispatch center that serves the Nampa community. The new law provides a way to honor dispatchers’ years of service, for which we are very grateful.”