The definitions in this section will familiarize you with the terms used in this subchapter as well as other sections of the POMs.
Absolute coverage group – a permanent grouping of employees, e.g. all the employees of a city or town. It is a coverage group for coverage purposes as well as for reporting purposes. When used for coverage purposes, the term also refers to groups of employees whose positions are not under a retirement system; such groups are also referred to as Section 218(b)(5) coverage groups.
Act – Social Security Act
Coverage groups – employee groupings by which employees are covered under a Section 218 Agreement.
Employee – as defined in Sections 210(j) and 218(b)(3) of the Social Security Act. It includes a public officer of the State or political subdivision.
Governmental function – traditional function of government, legislative, executive, judicial, e.g., the control and prevention of crime, promoting the general welfare, providing for public safety
HI – Hospital Insurance (Medicare Part A)
Ineligibles - individuals in positions covered by a public retirement system who are excluded from membership in the system because of age, number of hours worked, or date of hiring
Interstate instrumentality – independent legal entity organized by two or more States to carry out one or more governmental functions. For example, the New Jersey-New York Port Authority. For purposes of a Section 218 Agreement, an interstate instrumentality has the status of a State.
Instrumentality – governmental organizations created by the State or by political subdivisions with authority to act in a legally independent capacity to accomplish the specific purposes for which they were created.
Modification – an amendment to an original Section 218 Agreement to extend coverage to additional groups of employees or to implement changes in Federal and State laws.
NCSSSA – National Conference of State Social Security Administrators
Nonproprietary functions – governmental function of a State or political subdivision, i.e., maintaining order
OASDHI – Old-Age, Survivors, Disability and Hospital Insurance
Optional exclusions – services the Act permits a State to include or exclude from coverage under a Section 218 Agreement
Optionals - employees who are in positions that make them eligible to join the retirement system but have not exercised their option to do so
Political subdivision – a separate legal entity of a State that has governmental powers and functions. Political subdivisions ordinarily include counties, cities, school districts and other similar governmental entities.
Proprietary function – a function of a governmental entity that is other than governmental in nature
Required exclusions – services that are excluded from Social Security and Medicare coverage under Sections 218 and 210 of the Act
Retirement system – an annuity, pension, retirement, or similar fund or system established by a State or political subdivision for the purpose of paying retirement benefits to employees. For Section 218 purposes, whether a retirement system meets the minimum benefit requirements under the Internal Revenue Code is irrelevant.
Retirement system coverage group – a group of employees whose positions are covered under a retirement system by referendum under the provisions of Section 218(d).
Section 218 Agreement – A written agreement between the State and SSA, pursuant to Section 218 of the Act, to provide Social Security and Medicare-HI (Hospital Insurance) or Medicare-HI only coverage for State and local government employees.
State – for Section 218 purposes, the term “State” includes the 50 States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and interstate instrumentalities. It does not include the District of Columbia, Guam or American Samoa.
State Social Security Administrator – principal State official designated to act for the State in administering and maintaining the State’s Section 218 Agreement with the SSA.