here in Ohio: We also have the 55 age + 30 years service for full retirement (which comes out to 66% of gross pay for average of 3 highest earning years). We don't pay anything for health insuraqnce as retirees (we do pay a portion of the premium while we are working, but it isn't much). The retirement system grants an allowance for health insurance. Depending upon the plan you choose, the allowance takes care of the full premium, or you can choose higher deductibles and co-pays and then deposit a portion of the allowance money into a spending account.
We have merit increases plus cost of living. But for the supervisory/professional categories, you only get a raise if your current wage level is not considered excessive. For those who have been around since the days when raises were like clock-work, we already make more than they think we should and so we don't get any raises at all. I'll actually do better as a retiree, with the cost of living increases being the lower of consumer price index vs. 3% being paid annually.
As for brown-nosing, I've seen others do it and prosper but it is not something I am good at. It makes me want to gag when I hear people sucking up to the bosses (laughing at their lame jokes, expressing feighned concern over their overdeal of having a hang-nail or whatever). Fortunately, I have a great supervisor who treats me like an adult and tries to be flexible. In return, I am an excellent employee who does his job and is a team player. The closest I came to sucking up was telling the new Human Resources Director, "About the only time we will say more than 'Hi' to each other is at the annual employee recognition luncheon, when you will be congratulating me on another year of outstanding performance!"