March 28, 2013

2013-2014 Budget Funding Honors Promise to OTB Retirees

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Assembly Government Employees Committee Chair Peter Abbate, Jr. today announced $5 million in funding to provide health insurance coverage for the hundreds of former employees of New York City Off-Track Betting (NYCOTB).

"The restoration of these benefits represents the fulfillment of a promise," said Silver. "These employees worked for years to earn their health coverage and this bridge program represents an essential support until federal coverage begins."

"Imagine working for years only to see health benefits that can mean the difference between life and death disappear at the finish line," said Abbate. "I am pleased to have finally reached agreement on this issue and I welcome this bridge program and the crucial coverage it will provide for hundreds of New Yorkers."

The NYCOTB Retiree Fund will provide health benefit coverage for employees to ensure that former employees have continuous health coverage in the future.

Former employees who aren't eligible for Medicare will have a 'bridge' program offered to them that will last until the federal Affordable Care Act goes into effect. Former employees who are eligible for Medicare will have a 'wrap-around' program that incorporates Medicaid, with no end date.