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Social Security

The Office of the State Treasurer’s Social Security Division is responsible for administering the Social Security and Medicare coverage program for all state and local (public) governmental employers throughout the State of Louisiana.

A significant part of the responsibilities is to assist all of Louisiana’s public employers by serving as a facilitator and communication bridge between those employers and the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which are the two principal federal agencies responsible for coverage, benefits, and tax withholding associated with Social Security and Medicare.

When the Social Security Act was enacted in 1935, public employees were not eligible for Social Security Benefits. This was due to a Constitutional question regarding the Federal government’s power to tax state and local governments. Consequently, many government employees were without a retirement plan.

Beginning in 1951, Section 218 of the Act authorized states to voluntarily elect Social Security coverage for public employees who were not already covered under a retirement plan. These Federal-State Agreements often referred to as Section 218 Agreements, were entered into with the Social Security Administration

Contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 or for information on Medicare eligibility or enrollment. Contact Angie Dowdy, State Social Security Official at for the following items:

  • To determine if your LOUISIANA Public Employer has an active Plan and Agreement (Section 218 Agreement)

  • How does a local government agency request a referendum for Medicare Only or Social Security coverage?

  • Why are Social Security and Medicare coverage for state and local government different than for the private sector employees?

  • What is a Section 218 Agreement and why is it important to many state and local government employers?

  • How does participation in a public retirement system affect Social Security benefits for state and local governmental employees?

  • Why are some state and local government workers excluded from Social Security and Medicare

  • How can a state or local government employer be sure it is in compliance with Social Security and Medicare coverage requirements since coverage can differ from employer to employer?

  • Certain positions were excluded from Section 218 coverage and continue to be excluded despite Mandatory Social Security laws. For more detailed information on this topic contact your State Official.

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