ARTICLE 5 - DEFERRED COMPENSATION PROGRAM
 
9-3-501.  Definitions.
 
(a)  As used in this article:
 
(i)  Repealed By Laws 2001, Ch. 64, § 2.
 
(ii)  "Board" means the Wyoming retirement board established under W.S. 9-3-404(a);
 
(iii)  "Employee" means any person including any elected official employed by and receiving compensation from the state of Wyoming or a county, city, town or other political subdivision, but does not include any at-will contract employee under W.S. 9-2-1022(a)(xi)(F);
 
(iv)  "Plan document" means the official document recorded with the secretary of state and adopting and establishing a deferred compensation program for Wyoming under Public Law 95-600;
 
(v)  "Program" means the Wyoming deferred compensation program established in accordance with the plan document;
 
(vi)  Repealed by Laws 2015, ch. 10, § 2.
 
(vii)  "Provider" means any corporation licensed to do business in this state and providing investment products to program participants under contract and in accordance with this article;
 
(viii)  "This article" means W.S. 9-3-501 through 9-3-508.
 
9-3-502.  Establishment of program by state; administration by Wyoming retirement board; establishment of separate deferred compensation by political subdivisions; investment permitted; limitation on amount deferred; taxability.
 
(a)  The board shall establish and administer the program for employees in addition to any retirement, pension, benefit or other deferred compensation programs established by the governmental entity. Subject to requirements of this article, any county, city, town or other political subdivision may establish and administer a deferred compensation program separate from the program established under this article. A county, city, town or other political subdivision which wishes to enter into the state program established under this article shall adopt the plan document, provide the program to employees in accordance with this article and be subject to program administration by the board. A county, city, town, other political subdivision of the state or an entity or institution of the state which does not utilize the state auditor's office for payroll services may provide for automatic enrollment of new employees into the state program pursuant to W.S. 9-3-509 and pursuant to the requirements of this subsection.
 
(b)  Any employee may enter into a written agreement with the program or a separate deferred compensation program established by a county, city, town or other political subdivision to defer any part of his compensation for investment as provided by this article or an employee may be automatically enrolled as provided in W.S. 9-3-509 and subsection (a) of this section. The total annual amount deferred may at no time exceed the employee's annual salary under applicable salary schedules or compensation plans.
 
(c)  Compensation deferred pursuant to this article shall be included as compensation for the purpose of computing retirement or pension benefits earned by the employee, but the deferred compensation is exempt from state taxation to the same extent as it is exempt from federal income taxes.
 
9-3-503.  Investment of deferred compensation; limitation on approved investment plans; enrolling and servicing fees; holding of funds; limited liability of state and political subdivision.
 
(a)  The board may approve investment of deferred compensation in insurance and annuity contracts or other investment plans upon competitive bidding. No investment plan shall be approved unless the plan is offered by a  provider and is subject to rules and regulations of applicable federal and state regulatory agencies. The board may establish an account for the purpose of conducting the daily financial operations of the program and to avoid having to liquidate investments prior to maturity. The funds in this account shall be invested in, and be subject to the same terms and conditions as the pools for investments established under W.S. 9-1-416 and 9-4-831(a)(xxvii).
 
(b)  The board may establish by contract the fees for enrolling program participants and servicing participant accounts with providers. Fees shall be established at amounts necessary to maintain the account balance in accordance with W.S. 9-3-507.
 
(c)  All compensation deferred pursuant to this article and all earnings thereon shall be held in trust or pursuant to custodial accounts or contracts meeting the requirements of 26 USC 457(g) and for the exclusive benefit of program participants and their beneficiaries. An account is established to be used by the board for depositing deferred compensation and earnings on deferred compensation as necessary to fulfill the requirements of this article. Funds in the account shall be held separately from all other funds and monies held by the state and shall be expended only as provided by this article and pursuant to written agreements entered into under this article. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection, the financial liability of the state, county, city, town or other political subdivision is limited to the value of the investment plan purchased.
 
9-3-504.  Repealed By Laws 2001, Ch. 64, § 2.
 
9-3-505.  Duties of Wyoming retirement board.
 
(a)  The board shall:
 
(i)  Invest compensation deferred pursuant to this article;
 
(ii)  Select providers and review and evaluate provider contracts and provider investment plans;
 
(iii)  Repealed by Laws 2015, ch. 10, § 2.
 
(iv)  Establish policy governing overall operation of the program.
 
9-3-506.  Repealed by Laws 2015, ch. 10, § 2.
 
9-3-507.  Special account for administrative expenses; deposits and expenditures; account balance specified; audit required.
 
(a)  The board shall deposit all fees paid by providers under the program for enrollment and servicing of accounts of program participants and all amounts deducted from compensation deferred by program participants for administrative and accounting purposes, into an account with a financial institution selected by the board. The board shall account for all deposits into and all authorized payments from the account.
 
(b)  Expenditures from the account established under subsection (a) of this section shall be for the following administrative expenses:
 
(i)  Enrollment of program participants;
 
(ii)  Servicing of accounts established for program participants;
 
(iii)  Necessary accounting, legal and other professional services;
 
(iv)  Per diem and travel expense reimbursement to members and employees of the board for time actually devoted to the administration of and responsibilities imposed under this article; and
 
(v)  Other necessary administrative costs incurred in administering the program.
 
(c)  The account balance shall be an amount sufficient to meet the annual administrative expenses of the program. The board shall conduct contract negotiations with providers to establish enrolling and servicing fees imposed upon the program at an amount necessary to pay administrative expenses from the account while providing the maximum investment earnings and benefits to program participants.
 
(d)  The board shall provide for an independent audit of the account on an annual basis.  A summary of the audit and its findings shall be included as part of the annual report by the board as required by law.
 
9-3-508.  Amount of state's contribution; qualified annuity plan contributions authorized; estimates submitted to state budget officer.
 
(a)  The state shall contribute monthly to the program the amount established and appropriated by the legislature for each employee and official contributing to and participating in the program in accordance with subsections (b) and (c) of this section, except that there shall be no state contribution for any member of the legislature eligible for participation in the program solely in his capacity as a state legislator. Any legislative appropriation under any act adopted by the legislature for contributions under this section shall be expended solely for the purposes specified in this section during the budget period for which the appropriation is made and shall not be carried forward for contributions in succeeding budget periods.
 
(b)  Any state agency, department or institution including the University of Wyoming and the community colleges in the state, shall pay monthly to the board the amount established and appropriated by the legislature for each qualified employee or official participating in the program. For purposes of this subsection, "qualified employee or official" means any employee or official contributing monthly to the program through salary deferrals in an amount equal to or greater than the amount specified. To qualify for the state contribution available pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, the employee or official shall contribute monthly to the program from their salary an amount not less than the per person amount established and appropriated by the legislature under subsection (a) of this section.
 
(c)  Each state agency, department and institution shall estimate the amount required for its participation in the program for the next biennium and shall submit the estimate to the state budget officer to be included within the budget request.
 
(d)  For any qualified employee electing contributions under this subsection instead of under subsections (a) and (b) of this section, the University of Wyoming and the community colleges shall contribute monthly to a qualified annuity plan under 26 U.S.C. 403(b) for the qualified employee subject to the following:
 
(i)  The amount computed shall be equal to the amount established and appropriated by the legislature under subsections (a) and (b) of this section;
 
(ii)  "Qualified employee" as used in this subsection means any employee contributing to a qualified annuity plan under 26 U.S.C. 403(b) in an amount equal to or greater than the amount specified under paragraph (d)(i) of this section;
 
(iii)  The university and the Wyoming community college commission shall estimate the amount required for respective participation under this subsection for the next biennium and shall submit the estimate to the state budget officer to be included within the budget request.
 
9-3-509.  Enrollment of state employees in the plan; notice to employee; contribution rate; investment of funds by retirement system; withdrawal period; plan document to provide for automatic enrollment.
 
(a)  On and after July 1, 2015, a person who begins employment, or returns to employment after a break in service, with any state agency, department or institution which utilizes the state auditor's office for payroll services, including the legislature and the judiciary, and who is otherwise eligible to participate in the program, shall be automatically enrolled in the program as provided in this section.
 
(b)  An employee enrolled in the program under this section shall have:
 
(i)  An opt out period in which the employee may elect to not participate in the program.  No contribution shall be made to the program by or on behalf of the employee during the pendency of the opt out period.  An employee's opt out period shall begin thirty (30) days after enrollment in the program; and
 
(ii)  A ninety (90) day permissible withdrawal period from the program beginning on the date of the employee's first contribution to the program.  An employee may withdraw his total account balance from the program within the permissible withdrawal period.
 
(c)  An employee automatically enrolled in the program under this section shall contribute three percent (3%) of the employee's monthly pre-tax includible compensation to the employee's account under the program after the expiration of the employee's opt out period provided in paragraph (b)(i) of this section.  An employee automatically enrolled in the program under this section may elect in writing to change the employee's contribution rate pursuant to the plan document as defined in W.S. 9-3-502(a).
 
(d)  After the expiration of an employee's ninety (90) day permissible withdrawal period, the retirement system shall invest all contributions made by or on behalf of an employee enrolled in the program pursuant to this section in an age appropriate investment plan based on the projected retirement date of the employee as determined by the retirement system.  During the pendency of an employee's permissible withdrawal period provided in paragraph (b)(ii) of this section, the retirement system shall invest all contributions made by or on behalf of the employee enrolled in an investment plan with limited exposure to market volatilities as determined by the retirement system.  An employee enrolled in an investment plan may change investment plans or otherwise invest funds in his account in the same manner as all other participants in the program.
 
(e)  The board shall provide notice in writing to an employee automatically enrolled in the program. Notice under this subsection shall include:
 
(i)  The employee's ability to opt out of the program as provided in paragraph (b)(i) of this section;
 
(ii)  The employee's ninety (90) day permissible withdrawal period from the program provided in paragraph (b)(ii) of this section;
 
(iii)  The employee's automatic level of contribution to the program; and
 
(iv)  The investment plans the employee will be enrolled in within the program during the pendency of the ninety (90) day permissible withdrawal period and following the expiration of the permissible withdrawal period.
 
(f)  An employee enrolled in the program under this section shall have the same rights to participate in the program as all other participants in the program.
 
(g)  The board shall effectuate the purposes of this section in the plan document.
 
(h)  Failure to provide notice under subsection (e) of this section shall not give rise to any additional obligation or liability on the part of the state or the program.
 
(j)  This section shall not apply to any member of the legislature participating in the program solely in his capacity as a state legislator.