Employee Benefits

Working for the Columbia County government offers people the opportunity to serve the community as well as work in a professional and fulfilling environment. We recognize that it is our employees who drive our success and meet the needs of our residents every day. To attract and retain the best staff, we offer a stable, family-oriented work environment and an excellent benefits package. Learn more about Columbia County Benefits below and through the Columbia County Benefits Insight Booklet (PDF).

New employees are eligible for benefits upon date of hire and have thirty (30) days to enroll. In the event the thirty (30) day period lapses, the employee cannot enroll until the next open enrollment period unless there is a life event change as stated below.

Employees must work at least 30 hours or more per week to be benefits eligible.

Eligibility status changes due to marriage, birth, adoption, or death must be made within thirty (30) days of such life event change. If you fail to request a change within the thirty (30) day provision, then you will not be able to enroll until the next open enrollment period.

Under the medical, dental, and vision plans, dependents are eligible for coverage up to age 26.  Under the life insurance policies, children are covered up to age 19, or if a full-time student, to age 25.

Click one of the six blue tabs below to learn more about the major areas of benefits that our employees earn:

  1. Health Products
  2. Protection Products
  3. Financial Products

-Medical Insurance

-Dental Insurance

-Vision Insurance

-Accident Insurance

  1. Retirement Benefits
  2. Paid Holidays
  3. Additional Benefits

The Columbia County Board of Commissioners Retirement and Deferred Compensation Plans are defined contribution plans which provide 401(a) employer based contributions and voluntary 457 employee deferred compensation administered by Mission Square Retirement. Defined contribution plans allow an employer and/or employee to contribute a percentage of salary to an account in the employee’s name. Employees choose from a range of investment options and receive quarterly statements which detail the deposits, earnings, and other activities in their individual account(s).

401a

-Employer Base Contribution-4% of salary regardless of employee's 457b contributions and eligibility is immediate.

-Employer Match Contribution-up to 4% (Columbia County matches ½% of an employee’s deferral amount up to a maximum of 4%. The match amount is deposited into the employee’s 401a account.)

Vesting Schedule For 401a (full vesting after 5 years)

Year 1 – 0 %

Year 2 – 25 %

Year 3 – 50 %

Year 4 – 75 %

Year 5 –100 %

457b Deferred Compensation

-Employee Contribution-0% up to $22,500 for 2024 and eligibility is immediate.

-County will match 1/2% of employee contributions up to a maximum of 4%.

-Upon leaving employment with Columbia County, employees may withdraw both funds in a lump sum, roll over to an IRA or into another qualified employer’s plan. The 401(a) distribution is subject to meeting the vesting schedule. 

Roth Options

Firefighters are enrolled in Georgia Firefighters' Pension Fund- to receive a pension, a firefighter must be 55 years of age and have worked 25 years.

The Employee Handbook supersedes the above information. Please contact the Human Resources Department at 706-868-3300 with any questions.