Tier V Out in 2010?
June 16th, 2009
There are plenty of proposals that we will soon find out were left out of this year’s budget agreement, which was announced last night by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Council Speaker Christine Quinn — documents are pending.
One which is definitely not included in this plan is the creation of a fifth pension tier for city employees, which earlier this week the administration said was one of its top priorities in Albany this session. A new tier for employees could save the city billions over the long term by reducing benefits and possibly raising the retirement age. The governor brokered a similar deal with state employees’ unions earlier this month.
Whether it was the Senate stalemate or a backlash from city unions, we don’t know. But it looks like the administration isn’t anticipating it for this budget cycle. Here is the mayor’s response last night when asked whether it was in the new budget:
“We are expecting and hoping that Albany will help usÖ The biggest problem we have is our uncontrollables, mainly those in the hands of Albany, (which) are up 6 percent. And we just have to do it. We cannot afford going forward (with) the kind of pension costs and health care costs that we have had. We did negotiate some health care costs with the unions, and they deserve a lot of credit for coming to the table. It was a long negotiation. It was not an easy one, but we came to an agreement. Thatís what democracy is all about. Thatís exactly the kind of relationship we want to haveÖ We have to do something in Albany for changing the pension system cause otherwise it will be something we cant afford whatsoever in another few years. It is growing unchecked and if the stock market does not recover between now and the end of this month we are going to have to repay into the system all the monies they lost. We can do it over a six year period, but we have to make up those.”
A spokesperson later confirmed it wasn’t in the plan.By Courtney Gross on June 16, 2009, 2:10 pm
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