Neb. State Retirement Board Fires Bank, Hires Life Company

The Nebraska Public Employees Retirement Board has decided to fire Union Bank & Trust, citing performance issues.

The Lincoln-based bank had won a contract earlier this year to manage the retirement plan records of 31,000 current and retired state and county employees in Nebraska.

The board motion approved Thursday said the contract would be ended “as soon as possible.”

“There were some performance issues,” said Charles Peters Sr., chairman of the board.

The board also decided to hire Ameritas Life Insurance Corp., which had the second-lowest bid. The Lincoln-based company had the contract for years.

Peters would not discuss the problems with Union Bank.

Some retirees have complained of slow payments and other problems.

One state employee, Brian Dugas, said performance information on retirement funds is often out of date.

“I don’t have information on how the funds are actually doing,” said Dugas, who works for the state Health and Human Services System. “It’s difficult to judge how I want to invest the money.”

Union Bank officials did not comment on Friday.

Under the contract, the bank was to be paid $16 per person a year to manage the records for about 31,000 people who were covered by defined contribution plans.

The state manages the records for about 65,000 other current and retired employees who are covered by defined benefit plans. Among them are judges, school employees and members of the Nebraska State Patrol.

Last month, after a state audit disclosed morale issues among staff members and continuing computer problems, the state Public Employees Retirement Systems director, Anna Sullivan, turned in her resignation.

Her agency oversees the retirement systems and is in turn overseen by the retirement board.