Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 1. General Provisions


19-7-101. Definitions. Unless the context requires otherwise, the following definitions apply in this chapter:

(1) (a) "Compensation" means remuneration paid from funds controlled by an employer for the member's services or for time during which the member is excused from work because the member has taken compensatory leave, sick leave, annual leave, or a leave of absence before any pretax deductions allowed by state or federal law are made.

(b) Compensation does not include:

(i) maintenance, allowances, and expenses; or

(ii) bonuses provided after July 1, 2013, that are one-time, temporary payments in addition to and not considered part of base pay.

(2) "Detention officer" means any detention officer who is hired by a sheriff, employed in a detention center, and acting as a detention officer for the sheriff and who has received or is expected to receive training to meet the employment standards set for detention officers by the Montana public safety officer standards and training council established in 2-15-2029.

(3) (a) "Highest average compensation" means:

(i) for members hired prior to July 1, 2011, the member's highest average monthly compensation during any 36 consecutive months of membership service;

(ii) for members hired on or after July 1, 2011, the highest average compensation during any 60 consecutive months of membership service; or

(iii) if a member has not served the minimum specified period of membership service as applicable in subsection (3)(a)(i) or (3)(a)(ii), the total compensation earned divided by the number of months of service.

(b) Lump-sum payments for compensatory leave, sick leave, and annual leave paid to the member upon termination of employment may be used in the calculation of a retirement benefit only to the extent that they are used to replace, on a month-for-month basis, the normal compensation for a month or months included in the calculation of the highest average compensation. A lump-sum payment may not be added to a single month's compensation.

(c) Excess earnings limits must be applied to the calculation of the highest average compensation pursuant to 19-2-1005(2).

(4) "Investigator" means a person who is employed by the department of justice as a criminal investigator or as a gambling investigator.

(5) "Sheriff" means any elected or appointed county sheriff or undersheriff or any appointed, lawfully trained, appropriately salaried, and full-time deputy sheriff with the requisite professional certification and licensing.

History: Ap. p. Sec. 2, Ch. 178, L. 1974; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 59, L. 1977; amd. Sec. 17, Ch. 332, L. 1977; Sec. 68-2602, R.C.M. 1947; Ap. p. Sec. 3, Ch. 178, L. 1974; amd. Sec. 4, Ch. 132, L. 1977; Sec. 68-2603, R.C.M. 1947; R.C.M. 1947, 68-2602, 68-2603; amd. Sec. 8, Ch. 114, L. 1979; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 282, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 401, L. 1985; amd. Sec. 5, Ch. 45, L. 1987; amd. Sec. 62, Ch. 370, L. 1987; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 196, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 261, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 134, Ch. 265, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 17, Ch. 412, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 31, Ch. 58, L. 1999; amd. Sec. 70, Ch. 99, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 149, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 70, Ch. 429, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 259, L. 2005; amd. Sec. 18, Ch. 128, L. 2007; amd. Sec. 14, Ch. 506, L. 2007; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 155, L. 2011; amd. Sec. 6, Ch. 386, L. 2013; amd. Sec. 21, Ch. 195, L. 2017; amd. Sec. 13, Ch. 400, L. 2023.