The fund is intended to reward long-term service as an eligible volunteer. The contributions made during the service period by a member and by others on behalf of the member, if any, will accumulate over the years and be combined with investment gains and/or losses. Therefore, the actual amount of the service award will be determined by the balances in the member's accounts (see Tracking Account Balances) at the time the distribution is made.
Distributions from the accounts are made in a single lump sum within 120 days of the end of the fiscal year on June 30. Distributions are typically made in October of each year. The lump-sum payment is the only distribution method under the program.
The deadline to elect the single annual distribution is June 10. The member should submit the Distribution Election Form (VOLSAP-6) by the deadline in time to be processed before June 30 of the year in which the member requests the distribution.
Tracking Account Balances
Each member has up to three sub-accounts:
- Member Contribution Account:
- Credited with the member's personal contributions and associated earnings or losses.
- Department Contribution Account:
- Credited with department, squad, local government or other funding source contributions, if any, and associated earnings or losses, including contributions made on behalf of a member in lieu of the member's required contribution.
- General Fund Contribution Account:
- Credited with general fund contributions, if appropriated, and associated gains or losses. To date, there have been no general fund contributions to VOLSAP.
NOTE: Investment gains and losses are separately maintained and attributed to each sub-account.
Access to VOLSAP Funds
A member may not roll over VOLSAP funds into another account, such as a 401(k), 401(a), 403(b), etc. Unlike most retirement accounts that receive favorable tax treatment (e.g., pre-tax contributions are allowed), VOLSAP contributions are made on an after-tax basis. The only way a member may access his or her VOLSAP funds is by applying for a distribution.