VGEA’s founding purpose was to establish a retirement plan for State employees who devoted a lifetime to public service.  For the last 55 years, VGEA has worked to improve and protect the retirement benefit for State employees.

Our efforts have led to an increase in the retirement benefit multiplier, a regular cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) that is pre-funded, a reduction in the employee contribution and the establishment of a matching deferred compensation plan. VGEA was the leader in the 2012 retirement reform efforts by the Governor and General Assembly – protecting the benefit promised to current employees and retirees while ensuring the General Assembly meets its funding obligations to keep the system financially sound.

These efforts continue, but we can only be successful if you get involved.  The tables below show the annual COLA amounts and other changes that have occurred as a result of VGEA involvement.

COLA History

Year COLA Plan 1 COLA Plan 2   Year  
2007 3.1%



2006 3.2%



2005 2.7%



2004 2.3%



2003 1.6%


2002 2.8%


2001 3.2%


2000 2.2%









 Multiplier History 

Year         Formula/Multiplier      Major Benefit Milestone
Pre-1960 1% of AFC  
1966 1 1/8% of AFC  
1970 1.5% of AFC  
1974   AFC changed from highest five consecutive years of creditable compensation to the highest three consecutive years of creditable compensation.  Formula changed to:• If AFC is less than $13,200, benefit is 1.5% of full average for each year of creditable service or• If AFC is $13,200 or more, benefit is 1.65% of AFC less $1,200 for each year of creditable service. 
1990   Formula changed to:• 1.5% of first $13,200 of AFC plus 1.65% of AFC in excess of $13,200 or, if 35 or more years of service •   1.65% of full AFCJRS formula changes to 1.65% of full AFC regardless of service. 
1999   Single benefit formula with a multiplier of 1.7 of average final compensation established; the three percent benefit adjustment eliminated and a two percent benefit adjustment provided to all members who retired prior to January 1, 1999; Minimum age and service requirements for full retirement benefits reduced from 55/30 to 50/30 for State employees and teachers (optional for political subdivisions); Virginia Law Officers’ Retirement System established (effective 10/1/99); Volunteer Firefighters’ and Rescue Squad Workers’ Pension Fund authorized (effective 7/1/00); State employee and teacher retiree health insurance credit increased; employer-match for the State employee deferred compensation program authorized (effective 1/1/00) 
2001   VaLORS members hired or rehired on or after July 1, 2001, have a 2% multiplier applied to their hazardous duty service. The 1.7% multiplier is applied to the non-hazardous duty service.  These members are not eligible for the hazardous duty supplement. VaLORS members in service on June 30 and July 1, 2011 could elect the 2% multiplier with no supplement or remain with the 1.7% with hazardous duty supplement.
2007   Member of the State Police Officers Retirement System (SPORS) and sheriffs have a 1.85% multiplier.  Localities can elect the 1.85% multiplier for their hazardous duty employees.
2012   Plan 2 multiplier lowered to 1.65% for creditable service earned after January 1, 2013; hybrid plan adopted with a multiplier of 1.0% for new employees hired beginning January 1, 2014.


What VGEA Members Are Saying:

  • This organization (VGEA) provides highest quality support for active and retired public employees…

    Dan Moon
  • VGEA is our Voice in Richmond!

    Judy Franklin
  • VGEA is Your Connection that has the strength of numbers and influence to demand that our issues are addressed.

    April Mela
  • I’m impressed with the VGEA’s General Assembly accomplishments, particularly in the last few years.

    Terry Alfred
  • Thank you, VGEA, for all you do for State employees. Your effort and dedication are much appreciated.

    Jayne Fanshaw, Longwood University
  • VGEA is wonderful and has our best interests at heart…it is truly the voice of the people.

    Joan Stromberg, ABC
  • Thank you, (VGEA) you do a great job representing us! 

    Karen Poff
  • The cellphone discounts I’ve gotten through VGEA have probably been enough to pay my association dues for the rest of my life!

    L.F., Department of Corrections
  • “I saved $200 this year just by changing to Liberty Mutual for car insurance. That’s how much the VGEA insurance discount was – twice my dues!”

    J. L. Stone
  • Great organization and I’m proud to be a member. VGEA worked tirelessly to ensure state employees received a 3% raise this year and not tied to revenue projections. VGEA is our voice to state government. I wish more state employees would join, there is strength in numbers.

    Carolyn Bethea

Representing the Commonwealth’s Employees and Retirees

For more than a half century, the VGEA has worked with Virginia General Assembly members and every Governor to protect the interests of the Commonwealth’s employees and retirees and to ensure that their needs are addressed. Learn More