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Cuomo Signs Pension 'Tier VI' into Law

Governor held afternoon signing, arguing that reform was needed to prevent local governments from going bankrupt.

Touting the new Tier VI for the state's employee pension systems as saving municipalities from bankruptcy, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the overhaul into law on Friday afternoon.

Cuomo (D-New Castle) said in a broadcasted statement that such reform should have been passed years ago.

The governor argued that pension reform was necessary to avoid layoffs of public employees, to help taxpayers and to help businesses.

“It was that clear and that obvious," Cuomo said in his broadcast. The legislation was passed this week by the state legislature.

The new tier includes major changes, although they only affect new employees. In the broadcast, Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy described measures such as the introduction of a voluntary defined contribution plan similar to a 401(k) for non-union employees, salary calculations to reduce "padding" the costs of pensions, and employee contribution in proportion to how much they make.

Other notable measures include raising the retirement age, reducing the percantage of salary that can be collected under the pensions, and requiring that the state fund any enhancements to pension plans. The later measure restricts measures dubbed "pension sweeteners."

Officials in municipalities and school districts from throughout the region have complained that the pension system as it states is a costly unfunded mandate and one that contributes signifcantly to rises in property taxes. The call for changing the system has also come less than a year after Cuomo signed a property tax levy increase cap into law, which local and school officials argued unfairly restricts their ability to pay for state mandates.

To read more about the new pension tier, for details.

jeff meyer March 22, 2012 at 09:51 PM
Mr. Deixler, thank you for your concern. I have no problem with criticism though. I am blessed or cursed with thick skin. My real name is Jeff Meyer and my pro labor and pro union beliefs are who I am. Unionization is the best remedy that a capitalistic society offers that ensures protection and fairness for the worker. I am also in favor of universal health care for all individuals living in this great nation. If the best thing that people can throw at me are insults as the majority of them hide behind anonymous and phony screen names then that's on them. I have never filed an anonymous complaint, e-mail or letter in my life. If any of my detractors wish to find me I am easy to locate. Thanks for the thought. Jeff Meyer Tuckahoe, NY
john slivin March 22, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Do we need cops yes do we need every town to have the forces they do along with county and state.......no the costs are prohibitive and need really is not there for most part(especially in vast majority of westchester where cops days are spent aimlessly driving around finding sots to hang out and yap with fellow cop in btw stops to dunkin donoughts)......add in the ot games and ridiculous bene's and it is a mess Unions were needed many decades ago when labor was taken advantage of now they are ones who do the taking advantage
jeff meyer March 22, 2012 at 10:19 PM
John Silvin, You destroy your own credibility with your inaccurate, child like, description of police officers. Like I told you before, you only have yourself to blame for whatever miserable occupation you chose. If you find the salary and benefits and pension of a police officer so desirable then why did you not become one. Could you not cut it???? Wanabees are always the biggest critics. Unions take advantage of no one. An honest contract for an honest profession. Jeff Meyer Tuckahoe, NY
john slivin March 22, 2012 at 11:03 PM
Jeff you obviously have the time to post here all day long....I do not(actually work......I know that is a foreign concept for you)....I am done comrade......this is but first volley in the war to bring public service comp back where it belongs won't be that long now.....can't wait.......have a good night
jeff meyer March 23, 2012 at 01:44 AM
John Silvin, funny thing is I am responding to you so you have more free time then me. At least I am retired. You and your comments are quite weak. All the best. JM Tuckahoe, NY

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