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Bruce Rauner, Governor

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   History of GARS   

The History of GARS


Established as a Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) by state statute on July 1, 1947, the System commenced operations on November 1, 1947.

On June 30, 1948, the System had 190 active participants and no annuitants receiving monthly benefits. At June 30, 2013, there were 160 active participants and 310 annuitants receiving monthly retirement benefits averaging $4,544 and 118 survivors receiving monthly benefits averaging $2,500.

The System's investment portfolio, which began as a $25,000 U.S. Treasury Bond and a $15,000 U.S. Series G Savings Bond, has grown to $49 million and now includes investments in U.S. and foreign bonds and equity securities, venture capital and real estate.

At June 30, 1948, the actuarial determined liability of the System was $1 million while the amount of net assets totaled $39 thousand resulting in an unfunded actuarial liability of $961,000. At June 30, 2014, the accrued actuarial liability of the System was $323.4 million and the actuarial value of assets amounted to $51.6 million resulting in an unfunded actuarial liability of $271.8 million.

GARS offers educational services to active members. The programs include one-on-one counseling and a pre-retirement seminar.



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