STATE OF NEW YORK
2023-2024 Regular Sessions
May 19, 2023
Introduced by M. of A. PHEFFER AMATO -- read once and referred to the
Committee on Governmental Employees
AN ACT to amend the retirement and social security law, in relation to
the eligibility of New York city transit authority employees for
performance of duty disability retirement
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. Section 607-b of the retirement and social security law is
2 amended by adding a new subdivision a-1 to read as follows:
3 a-1. Any member of the New York city employees' retirement system who
4 is employed by the New York city transit authority and who participated
5 in World Trade Center rescue, recovery or cleanup operations, as defined
6 in section two of this chapter, who, on or after September eleventh, two
7 thousand one, becomes physically or mentally incapacitated for the
8 performance of duties as the natural and proximate result of an injury
9 sustained in the performance or discharge of his or her duties as a
10 result of such participation in World Trade Center rescue, recovery or
11 cleanup operations shall be paid a performance of duty disability
12 retirement allowance equal to three-quarters of final average salary,
13 subject to section 13-176 of the administrative code of the city of New
14 York. Any member who has made application or who, after the effective
15 date of this subdivision, makes application for such performance of duty
16 pension shall be entitled to invoke the medical review procedure
17 provided for in subdivision e of section six hundred five of this arti-
18 cle, subject to the terms and conditions set forth in such subdivision.
19 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.
FISCAL NOTE.--Pursuant to Legislative Law, Section 50:
SUMMARY OF BILL: This proposed legislation would amend provisions of
the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL) to grant New York City
Transit Authority (NYCTA) active and retired employees, who are or were
members of the New York City Employees' Retirement System (NYCERS)
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 7389 2
subject to RSSL Article 15, and have incurred a World Trade Center (WTC)
Qualifying Condition, a performance of duty disability retirement equiv-
alent to 75% of the member's Final Average Salary (FAS) prospectively as
of the effective date.
The proposed legislation would further permit such eligible NYCTA
members and retirees to utilize the Final Medical Review procedures
pursuant to RSSL Section 605-e to appeal from the NYCERS Medical Board
WTC disability benefit determinations.
Finally, the bill appears to grant such eligible NYCTA members and
retirees the ability to utilize the presumptions for infectious diseases
pursuant to subsection b of RSSL Section 607-b. Costs associated with
granting these presumptions have not been included in this Fiscal Note.
Effective Date: Upon enactment.
IMPACT ON BENEFITS: Currently, the WTC disability benefit for eligible
NYCTA WTC retirees is generally equal to a lifetime payment of the
greatest of 1/3 of FAS, 1/60th of FAS for each year of service, or the
service retirement benefit, if eligible.
Under the proposed legislation, the WTC disability benefit for eligi-
ble NYCTA WTC retirees would be revised to equal a retirement allowance
of 75% of FAS, less any applicable Workers' Compensation benefit.
FINANCIAL IMPACT - OVERVIEW: The bill, if enacted, would provide
increased benefits for 46 pensioners who have been approved for WTC
benefits. The bill also potentially provides for increased benefits for
an unknown number of future pensioners, who have submitted a qualified
WTC Notice of Participation. Although there are currently approximately
1,300 active and retired NYCTA members who have submitted a qualified
WTC Notice of Participation Form, the number of members from this group
who could potentially benefit from this proposed legislation in the
future cannot be readily determined.
The additional estimated financial impact for the unknown number of
future pensioners who could benefit has been calculated on a per event
basis equal to the increase in the present value of future employer
contributions for an average member who could be approved for WTC bene-
fits and who is assumed to benefit from the proposed legislation.
In determining the increase in the present value for the future
members who are assumed to benefit from the proposed legislation, it has
been assumed that 50% of the members would have retired under the
current Accidental Disability Retirement benefit and that the remaining
50% would have continued working if the proposed legislation were not
With respect to an individual member, the additional cost of this
proposed legislation could vary greatly depending on the member's length
of service, age, and salary history.
FINANCIAL IMPACT - PRESENT VALUES: Based on the census data and the
actuarial assumptions and methods described herein, the enactment of
this proposed legislation would increase the Present Value of Future
Benefits for 46 pensioners who have been approved for WTC benefits by
approximately $9.5 million.
In addition, the enactment of this proposed legislation would also
increase the present value of future employer contributions by approxi-
mately $262,600, on average, for each additional approval of WTC bene-
fits for members who are assumed to benefit from the proposed legis-
FINANCIAL IMPACT - ANNUAL EMPLOYER CONTRIBUTIONS: Enactment of this
proposed legislation would increase employer contributions, where such
amount would depend on the number of members affected as well as other
A. 7389 3
characteristics including the age, years of service, and salary history
of each member.
The 46 pensioners have no remaining working lifetime, and therefore
the entire increase in Unfunded Accrued Liability would be recognized
immediately. The enactment of this proposed legislation would therefore
result in an increase in Fiscal Year 2024 employer contributions of
approximately $10.5 million.
Based on the actuarial assumptions and methods described herein, the
enactment of this proposed legislation is estimated to increase annual
employer contributions by approximately $31,100, on average for each new
WTC benefit provided under this proposed legislation.
Since there is insufficient data currently available to estimate the
number of members who might be approved for WTC benefits, the financial
impact would be recognized at the time of event. Consequently, changes
in employer contributions for those NYCTA members not yet approved for
WTC benefits have been estimated assuming that the increase in the pres-
ent value of future employer contributions would be amortized over a
closed 15-year period (14 payments under the One-Year Lag Methodology)
using level dollar payments.
CENSUS DATA: The estimates presented herein are based on the census
data used in the June 30, 2022 actuarial valuation of NYCERS to deter-
mine the Preliminary Fiscal Year 2024 employer contributions.
The 46 NYCERS pensioners subject to Article 15 who are currently in
receipt of WTC disability benefits had an average age of approximately
64.3 years and an average maximum retirement allowance of approximately
The approximate 1,300 active members who have submitted WTC Notice of
Participation Forms are a subset of the 9,219 NYCTA employees who are
active members in NYCERS as of June 30, 2022 whose date of appointment
is prior to September 11, 2001, and who are not currently entitled to a
WTC benefit equal to 75% of FAS and, therefore, could potentially bene-
fit from the proposed legislation. These 9,219 active members had an
average age of approximately 57.0 years, average service of approximate-
ly 23.9 years, and an average salary of approximately $99,600.
ACTUARIAL ASSUMPTIONS AND METHODS: The estimates presented herein have
been calculated based on the actuarial assumptions and methods used for
the Preliminary Fiscal Year 2024 employer contributions of NYCERS.
For the purposes of this Fiscal Note, it is assumed that the changes
would be reflected for the first time in the June 30, 2022 actuarial
valuation of NYCERS used to determine employer contributions for Fiscal
RISK AND UNCERTAINTY: The costs presented in this Fiscal Note depend
highly on the realization of the actuarial assumptions used, demograph-
ics of the impacted population, and other factors such as investment,
contribution, and other risks. If actual experience deviates from actu-
arial assumptions, the actual costs could differ from those presented
Costs are also dependent on the actuarial methods used, and therefore
different actuarial methods could produce different results. Quantifying
these risks is beyond the scope of this Fiscal Note.
Not measured in this Fiscal Note are the following:
* The initial additional administrative costs to implement the
* The impact of this proposed legislation on Other Postemployment
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STATEMENT OF ACTUARIAL OPINION: I, Marek Tyszkiewicz, am the Chief
Actuary for, and independent of, the New York City Retirement Systems
and Pension Funds. I am an Associate of the Society of Actuaries and a
Member of the American Academy of Actuaries. I am a member of NYCERS but
do not believe it impairs my objectivity and I meet the Qualification
Standards of the American Academy of Actuaries to render the actuarial
opinion contained herein. To the best of my knowledge, the results
contained herein have been prepared in accordance with generally
accepted actuarial principles and procedures and with the Actuarial
Standards of Practice issued by the Actuarial Standards Board.
FISCAL NOTE IDENTIFICATION: This Fiscal Note 2023-47 dated May 12,
2023 was prepared by the Chief Actuary for the New York City Employees'
Retirement System. This estimate is intended for use only during the
2023 Legislative Session.