NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli has named himself keeper of the flame in defending the state's expensive and often abused public employee pension plan. Governor Cuomo is proposing a modest plan to allow new hires to opt for a 401 K style, defined contribution plan.
The current plan is generous and often gamed in totally legal but expensive ways. Currently, contribution rates for local governments will exceed 30% of salary for some employees by 2015.
All of that is driving up property taxes and leading to cuts in services and staffing.
The Governor's proposal is the long term solution to preserving a fair and affordable plan that allows for fixed, predictable costs for the employer, and portability for the employee.
Mr. DiNapoli has powerful allies in seeking to preserve the present system and like in any argument, he raises some valid points.
However, the hard facts are NYS and its local governments cannot afford the present course and the Governor's plan is one of many reforms needed for long term.
DiNapoli defends pension system - Times Union