Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP)

*For information regarding changes in the ARP, click here

NMERB ARP Operations Manual 

NMERB ARP Investment Policy


Upcoming Meetings:

ERB ARP Committee Agenda - Posted 3/18/15


Alternative Retirement Plan Updates:

Cover Letter to Employers (schools)

NMERB-TIAA CREF Announcement Letter

NMERB-Fidelity Announcement Letter

Fidelity Online Enrollment Instructions Letter


Some faculty and professional employees of New Mexico public universities and community colleges have the option of participating in the Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP), a defined contribution plan. Within the first 90 days of employment in an ARP-eligible position at a public post-secondary school, you can opt to participate in either the ERB Defined Benefit, or "regular," Plan or the ARP.

In a defined contribution plan, individual accounts are set up for participants, and benefits are based on contributions plus investment earnings. ARP participants direct their own investments, and retirement benefits are tied to the value of the assets in the account at retirement. Upon retirement, ARP participants have three options:
a monthly annuity based on the retiree's estimated life span,
payments received over a fixed term of years, or
a lump-sum payout.

To see current ERB contribution rates, click here.

The ERB receives 3% from the contributions paid by ERB employers to cover the actuarial impact on the Defined Benefit Plan attributable to employees participating in the ARP.

If you terminate your employment with a New Mexico university or community college, you may roll over the ARP account balance to another qualified retirement plan or withdraw the balance. If the distribution is not transferred directly from your ARP account into another qualified retirement plan, it is subject to federal income tax and a 10% penalty for early withdrawal. Contact your carrier for information on rollovers and distributions.

As a result of legislative changes in 2009, ARP participants now have the opportunity to switch to the ERB Defined Benefit Plan. After you have made contributions to the ARP for seven years, you have a 120-day window to enroll in the Defined Benefit Plan. Eligibility begins on the first day of the month after the date on which you have made seven years of contributions to the ARP. The seven-year mark is the only opportunity you will have to switch to the Defined Benefit Plan. If you make the change, you cannot switch back to the ARP.

If you opt to move to the Defined Benefit Plan, the money in your ARP account will remain there. You must contribute to the Defined Benefit Plan for five years to vest in the plan and be eligible for retirement benefits. You cannot purchase service credit for the time in which you were enrolled in the ARP; however, the seven years of participation in the ARP will count toward eligibility requirements to retire under the ERB Defined Benefit Plan.


For the ARP switch to DB Plan brochure click here.

For ARP forms click here.

ERB Director's Policy Regarding Contributions by Retirees Working Pursuant to the RTWP



For more information please see the ERB Member Handbook or email