A07958 Summary:

BILL NO    A07958 

SAME AS    SAME AS S05745

SPONSOR    Abbate (MS)

COSPNSR    Goldfeder, Saladino

MLTSPNSR   

Amd SS162 & 168, Work Comp L

Relates to participants in the World Trade Center rescue.
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A07958 Actions:

BILL NO    A07958 

06/02/2015 referred to governmental employees
06/10/2015 reported referred to ways and means
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A07958 Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A07958 Memo:

BILL NUMBER:A7958

TITLE OF BILL:

An act to amend the workers' compensation law and the retirement and
social security law in relation to participants in the World Trade
Center rescue

PURPOSE:

Reopens notice of participation for certain members who contracted
illness suffered as a result of participating in rescue, recovery, and
clean up directly related to attacks at the World. Trade Center on
September 11, 2001.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Extends the deadline during which to file as having a world trade
center condition and modifies qualifications.

JUSTIFICATION:

This bill will extend the deadline for filing a registration of
participation under the World Trade Center (WTC) Disability Law for
those members who were eligible and never filed an application. Some
of these members have become disabled with a WTC qualifying condition
and have been precluded from receiving the WTC disability benefits
because they never filed the notice of participation during the open
window period. This bill will correct this inequity.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

New Bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

See the bill.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect immediately.
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A07958 Text:

                           S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
       ________________________________________________________________________

                                         7958

                              2015-2016 Regular Sessions

                                 I N  A S S E M B L Y

                                     June 2, 2015
                                      ___________

       Introduced  by  M.  of A. ABBATE, GOLDFEDER -- read once and referred to
         the Committee on Governmental Employees

       AN ACT to amend the workers' compensation law  and  the  retirement  and
         social  security  law  in  relation to participants in the World Trade
         Center rescue

         THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
       BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

    1    Section 1. Section 162 of the workers' compensation law, as amended by
    2  section 489 of the laws of 2013, is amended to read as follows:
    3    S  162.  Registration  of  participation in World Trade Center rescue,
    4  recovery and clean-up operations. In order for the claim  of  a  partic-
    5  ipant  in World Trade Center rescue, recovery and clean-up operations to
    6  come within the application of this article, such participant must  file
    7  a  written  and  sworn statement with the board on a form promulgated by
    8  the chair indicating the dates and locations of such  participation  and
    9  the  name  of  such  participant's employer during the period of partic-
   10  ipation. Such statement must be filed not later than September eleventh,
   11  two thousand [fourteen] SEVENTEEN.  The board shall transmit a  copy  of
   12  such  statement  to the employer or carrier named therein. The filing of
   13  such a statement shall not be considered the filing of a claim for bene-
   14  fits under this chapter.
   15    S 2. Section 168 of the workers' compensation law is amended by adding
   16  a new subdivision 3 to read as follows:
   17    3. A CLAIM BY A PARTICIPANT IN THE WORLD TRADE CENTER RESCUE, RECOVERY
   18  OR CLEANUP OPERATIONS WHOSE DISABLEMENT OCCURRED BETWEEN SEPTEMBER ELEV-
   19  ENTH, TWO THOUSAND TWELVE, AND SEPTEMBER ELEVENTH, TWO THOUSAND FIFTEEN,
   20  SHALL NOT BE DISALLOWED AS BARRED BY SECTION EIGHTEEN OR  SECTION  TWEN-
   21  TY-EIGHT  OF  THIS CHAPTER IF SUCH CLAIM IS FILED ON OR BEFORE SEPTEMBER
   22  ELEVENTH, TWO THOUSAND SEVENTEEN. ANY SUCH CLAIM BY A PARTICIPANT IN THE
   23  WORLD TRADE CENTER RESCUE, RECOVERY OR CLEANUP OPERATIONS WHOSE DISABLE-
   24  MENT OCCURRED BETWEEN  SEPTEMBER  ELEVENTH,  TWO  THOUSAND  TWELVE,  AND

        EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                             [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                  LBD11342-01-5
       A. 7958                             2

    1  SEPTEMBER  ELEVENTH, TWO THOUSAND FIFTEEN, AND WAS DISALLOWED BY SECTION
    2  EIGHTEEN OR TWENTY-EIGHT OF THIS CHAPTER SHALL BE  RECONSIDERED  BY  THE
    3  BOARD.
    4    S  3.  Paragraph  (a) of subdivision 36 of section 2 of the retirement
    5  and social security law, as amended by chapter 472 of the laws of  2014,
    6  is amended to read as follows:
    7    (a)  "Qualifying World Trade Center condition" shall mean a qualifying
    8  condition or impairment of health resulting in disability  to  a  member
    9  who participated in World Trade Center rescue, recovery or cleanup oper-
   10  ations  for  a  qualifying  period,  as  those  terms are defined below,
   11  provided the following conditions have been met:  (i)  such  member,  or
   12  eligible  beneficiary in the case of the member's death, must have filed
   13  a written and sworn statement with the member's retirement system  on  a
   14  form  provided  by  such  system  indicating  the  underlying  dates and
   15  locations of employment not later than September eleventh, two  thousand
   16  [fifteen] SEVENTEEN, and (ii) such member has either successfully passed
   17  a  physical  examination  for  entry  into public service, or authorized
   18  release of all relevant medical records, if the member did not undergo a
   19  physical examination for entry into public service; and (iii)  there  is
   20  no  evidence  of  the  qualifying condition or impairment of health that
   21  formed the basis for the disability in  such  physical  examination  for
   22  entry  into  public service or in the relevant medical records, prior to
   23  September eleventh, two thousand one except for such member, or eligible
   24  beneficiary in the case of the member's death,  of  a  local  retirement
   25  system  of  a  city  with  a  population  of one million or more that is
   26  covered by section 13-551 of the administrative code of the city of  New
   27  York,  or  by  section twenty-five hundred seventy-five of the education
   28  law and for such member who separated from service with  vested  rights,
   29  or  eligible  beneficiary of such member who separated from service with
   30  vested rights in the case of the member's death, of a  local  retirement
   31  system  of  a  city  with  a  population  of one million or more who are
   32  covered by sections 13-168, 13-252.1 or 13-353.1 of  the  administrative
   33  code  of  the  city  of  New  York or sections five hundred seven-c, six
   34  hundred five-b, six hundred five-c, or six hundred seven-b of this chap-
   35  ter. The deadline for filing a written and sworn statement  required  by
   36  subparagraph  (i)  of  this  paragraph  shall be September eleventh, two
   37  thousand [fourteen] SEVENTEEN for such member, or  eligible  beneficiary
   38  in  the  case  of  the member's death, of a local retirement system of a
   39  city with a population of one million or more that is covered by section
   40  13-551 of the administrative code of the city of New York, or by section
   41  twenty-five hundred seventy-five of  the  education  law  and  for  such
   42  member  who separated from service with vested rights, or eligible bene-
   43  ficiary of such member who separated from service with vested rights  in
   44  the  case  of the member's death, of a local retirement system of a city
   45  with a population of one million or more who  are  covered  by  sections
   46  13-168,  13-252.1  or 13-353.1 of the administrative code of the city of
   47  New York and sections five hundred  seven-c,  six  hundred  five-b,  six
   48  hundred five-c, or six hundred seven-b of this chapter. Every retirement
   49  system  shall  keep  a copy of every written and sworn statement that is
   50  presented for filing not later than  September  eleventh,  two  thousand
   51  [fifteen]  SEVENTEEN,  including  those  that are rejected for filing as
   52  untimely.
   53    S 4. Notwithstanding any other provision to the contrary, none of  the
   54  provisions  of  this  act shall be subject to section twenty-five of the
   55  retirement and social security law.
       A. 7958                             3

    1    S 5. This act shall take effect immediately and  shall  be  deemed  to
    2  have  been  in  full  force  and effect on and after September 11, 2001;
    3  provided, however, that the amendments to sections 162 and  168  of  the
    4  workers'  compensation  law  made  by  sections one and two of this act,
    5  respectively,  shall  apply  to all open and closed claims coming within
    6  its purview.
         FISCAL NOTE.-- Pursuant to Legislative Law, Section 50:
         This bill would amend chapter 93 of the Laws of 2005 and  chapter  445
       of the Laws of 2006, which provided members of public retirement systems
       who  contract  any  form of disease or disability related to exposure to
       any elements in connection  with  the  World  Trade  Center  tragedy  of
       September  11,  2001 to be presumptive evidence that such disability, or
       death as a result of such disability was the result of an  accident  and
       was sustained in the performance of duty.
         Insofar as this bill would affect the New York State and Local Employ-
       ees' Retirement and the New York State and Local Police and Fire Retire-
       ment  System,  this  bill  would  extend  the deadline for filing notice
       regarding the eligibility for benefits for certain members  who  partic-
       ipated  in  the World Trade Center rescue, recovery or cleanup operation
       to September 11, 2017.
         If this bill is enacted, it would  lead  to  more  disabilities  being
       classified as "in performance of duty" or "accidental". For the disabil-
       ities  so classified due to this bill, the cost would depend on the age,
       service, salary and plan of the affected member or retiree, as  well  as
       whether  such person would have otherwise been eligible for, or has been
       receiving an ordinary disability, a performance of duty disability or  a
       service retirement. For those who contract such disease prior to retire-
       ment,  it  is estimated that there could be per person one-time costs of
       as much as four (4) times salary. For those who  contract  such  disease
       subsequent  to a service retirement, it is estimated that there would be
       an average per person cost of approximately 150% of final average  sala-
       ry.  For those who contract such disease subsequent to an ordinary disa-
       bility  retirement,  it  is estimated that there would be an average per
       person cost of approximately four (4) times final average salary.
         This bill would also lead to more deaths being  classified  as  "acci-
       dental".  For  each death classified as accidental due to this bill, the
       cost would depend on the age, service, salary and plan of  the  affected
       individual,  as  well as whether such person was an active member or has
       been receiving an ordinary disability, a performance of duty disability,
       an accidental disability or a service retirement. It is  estimated  that
       the cost for each ERS and PFRS individual affected would average approx-
       imately  three  (3) times final average salary and seven (7) times final
       average salary, respectively.
         ERS Costs: Pursuant to Section 25 of the Retirement and Social Securi-
       ty Law, the increased cost to the New York State  and  Local  Employees'
       Retirement  System  would be borne entirely by the State of New York and
       would require an itemized appropriation sufficient to pay  the  cost  of
       the  provision.  A  precise cost can't be determined at this time. Every
       year a cost will be determined (and billed to the state) based on  those
       benefiting from this provision.
         PFRS  Costs:  These costs would be shared by the State of New York and
       the participating employers in the PFRS.
         Summary of relevant resources:
         The membership data used in  measuring  the  impact  of  the  proposed
       change  was  the same as that used in the March 31, 2014 actuarial valu-
       ation.  Distributions and other statistics can  be  found  in  the  2014
       A. 7958                             4

       Report  of  the  Actuary  and  the  2014  Comprehensive Annual Financial
       Report.
         The  actuarial assumptions and methods used are described in the 2010,
       2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 Annual Report to the Comptroller on  Actuarial
       Assumptions,  and  the  Codes  Rules and Regulations of the State of New
       York: Audit and Control.
         The Market Assets and GASB Disclosures are found in the March 31, 2014
       New York State and Local  Retirement  System  Financial  Statements  and
       Supplementary Information.
         I am a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and meet the Quali-
       fication Standards to render the actuarial opinion contained herein.
         This  estimate,  dated  May 21, 2015, and intended for use only during
       the 2015 Legislative Session, is Fiscal Note No. 2015-123,  prepared  by
       the  Actuary  for the New York State and Local Employees' Retirement and
       the New York State and Local Police and Fire Retirement System.
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