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Retirement Security
AFSCME’s 1.6 million active and retired members have more than 1 trillion dollars in retirement assets invested in public pension systems across the country. The magnitude of these assets can make us a major player in the financial markets. We must work to ensure that this money is invested so that the retirement benefits promised to public employees are safe and secure.

Click here to learn how AFSCME is leading the fight for retirement security.

Local 685 members are invested in the Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association (LACERA), and have a "defined benefit" pension plan defined by LACERA as follows: 

  • "All LACERA retirement plans are defined benefit plans designed to pay a specified lifetime allowance to eligible members upon their retirement. Each member’s retirement allowance is based on three factors: age at retirement, years of service credit, and final compensation. Eligible members can retire with security, knowing they will receive a guaranteed retirement allowance every month for the rest of their lives."

Click here to learn more about your LACERA benefits.

Local 685 members also have access to a Deferred Compensation and Thrift Plan called the "Horizons Plan," where contributors earn a dollar-for-dollar County matching contribution up to 4 percent of your compensation.
Local 685, through the Coalition of County Unions, negotiates the Horizon plan parameters on members' behalf as part of the Fringe Benefits Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

What is Horizons?

Horizons is a voluntary supplemental retirement plan negotiated by Local 685, through the Coalition of County Unions (CCU).

Participants in Horizons make pre-tax payroll deductions, and the County of Los Angeles – as negotiated by Local 685 and the Coalition of County Unions – matches participants’ contributions dollar for dollar up to 4 percent of salary.

Horizons Participants have the opportunity to invest a multitude of investment options. Gains compound on a tax-deferred basis until withdrawal.

What does Local 685 have to do with Horizons?

The County match and the size of cap for the Horizons plan is negotiated by CCU as a part of the Coalition of County Unions’ Fringe Benefits Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Over the past three decades, the CCU has negotiated a better match than most public employee plans. 

A Premiere Negotiated Benefit

Most government employees have the right to participate in a deferred compensation or supplemental retirement plan. However, few non-management workers get an employer matching contribution or “match” on their investments.

Local 685 members not only have the right to invest in a deferred compensation plan, Horizons, but CCU has negotiated a dollar for dollar County match for every dollar invested up to 4 percent of salary.
This means that a $100 monthly investment really becomes a $200 investment because of the County match. That’s like getting a 100% return on your money before even investing it!