increasing value of comp time

I was looking over my timecard at work and saw that I have about 4 months of sick/comp/vacation time accrued.

That’s not surprising for me, as I am out sick rarely and don’t take a lot of vacation time.  It just stacks up.  I never thought much about it before.

Turns out that when you exit (or retire, as is my plan) you are paid for that unused time in cash.  But the payout is done at one’s then-current pay rate, not at the rate one had when accruing the time.  So the time I accrued when I first started is now worth 1.5x the original amount.

I haven’t been conserving the time at all (taken time off when I wanted it) and at the current rate I will have about $45k to cash in when I retire.  It will go into a tax-deferred account or maybe used to buy the vehicle if I don’t have one by then.