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Changing jobs and need a little help
Old 01-05-2013, 12:20 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
Join Date: Jan 2013
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Changing jobs and need a little help

Hello all,

Having to move because we are having triplets and need to be closer to family.

Currently I work for a city police department where our retirement multiplier is 3.3% which means at 30 years of service I can retire at 100% of my high three. There is no cola after retirement and insurance although currently is about $350 a month, will go up to almost $800 at retirement. I have 6 years in with only about 5,000 in a deferred comp and 3,000 in a Roth IRA.

When I move I can go work for another local police dept where the retirement (multiplier, no cola, insurance) will be the same. My time will transfer towards retirement so I will only have to work 24 more years. In 30 years I could (guessing) at around 60k a year in pension.

That was option #1

Or I could try option #2 which is:

Go for work for the federal bureau of prisons which is near by.

I could only work for the bop for 27 years due to mandatory retirement at age 57. Their multiplier is only 1.7% up to 20 years and then 1% for anything over 20. They do have the matching TSP or a Roth TSP which I could put money into, and the social security which would also be part of the retirement.

Just curious if anyone has ever thought about something like this. what is better?

30 years at 100% of salary


27 years at 40% of salary, TSP, social security

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Old 01-05-2013, 12:28 PM   #2
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I have no idea which would be better but do know that if it was me in your situation, I'd look back from 27 years in the future and realize I'd made the wrong choice.

Seriously, both look pretty good to me and odds are both packages could see some sort of revision in the future. I think I'd chose whichever job I thought I'd enjoy best. A quarter of a century is a very long time...

Numbers is hard.

Retired in 2005 at age 58, no pension

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Old 01-05-2013, 12:32 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
I think I'd chose whichever job I thought I'd enjoy best. A quarter of a century is a very long time...
+1. That's what I thought too, taking a less desirable job for 25 years just for a retirement package (that could change) doesn't seem like the best approach.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:50 PM   #4
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It seems to me that federal prisons often become political pawns--in Illinois there are threats to close this one or move this population somewhere else out of state, etc., depending on which congress critter has more clout. I would think the future of a local police force might be a little more assured?

And whoa triplets! Congrats! Keep us posted.
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:22 AM   #5
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What are the early retirement options for each choice? Can you still receive health insurance benefits in retirement if you retire early? How much will the pension be discounted if you decide to leave a few years early?

For me, the decision would come down to two primary factors:

1. Which is personally more enjoyable (REWahoo is right -- a quarter century is a long time . . .)

2. Which job, when couple with estimated outside savings and projected/discounted pensions, would allow me to achieve FIRE at the earlier age.

As a side note, if you're thinking about making the leap from local police force to federal employment, have you considered going for an 1811 position with one of the various federal agencies? FBI agent, diplomatic security, US Marshalls, ICE, etc. Those agencies are common targets for local police officers, offer great retirement packages, and may give you better onward flexibility than the BOP.

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