For some Fairfax public employees, retirement means collecting a nest egg — and returning to work?
Dozens of Fairfax County employees retire each year. But not really. After collecting a tidy nest egg to supplement their pensions, many return to the county payroll.
Critics say the revolving door, though legal, is a symptom of government compensation and retirement plans that have become too burdensome for taxpayers to support.
But county officials say the arrangement has helped Virginia’s largest jurisdiction manage a workforce of more than 12,000 full-time employees, and perhaps save money, too. It’s also been profitable for scores of employees like Douglas M. Guzman.
Guzman, 58, spent three decades working for Fairfax County government as a civil engineer. His expertise allowed him to manage the installation of synthetic fields in county parks.
In 2005, when Guzman became eligible to retire at 52 after 28 years of service, he opted instead to enter the county’s Deferred Retirement Option Program, known as DROP.
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