News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics
Local governments socked with double-digit pension increase
Local governments got hit Friday with another big increase in the rates they will pay to New York’s public-employee pension fund.
The state comptroller's office, which sets the rates, said local governments will pay a rate of 28.9 percent on police and fire salaries in fiscal 2013-14 — a jump of 12 percent from the current year; and 20.9 percent on all other government salaries — an 11 percent hike.
Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli said the rates of annual increases have finally slowed since the 2008 stock market crisis, but local governments are still feeling the impacts.
Here’s the Democrat’s statement:
“The Common Retirement Fund has experienced solid gains the last three years and continues to rebuild from the substantial financial market loss of 2008-2009,” DiNapoli said. “The rise in the employer contribution rate has slowed this year, but there will continue to be upward pressure on rates through Fiscal Year 2014-2015 reflecting the impact of that loss. New York continues to responsibly manage its pension system and our funded status remains among the highest in the country. It isn’t easy in these difficult economic times, but fulfilling our obligations has meant that New York has not had to play catch up like other states.”
One related item to note:
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and legislators earlier this year enacted a new, less generous set of benefits for future public hires. But because it applies only to those hired after the law was changed, local governments won’t see any savings for years.