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A05713 Summary:

SPONSORPheffer Amato
Add §605-g, R & SS L
Implements a presumption of performance of duty disability for post-traumatic stress disorder in certain employees of Suffolk county.
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A05713 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2023-2024 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     March 22, 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
          implementing a presumption of performance of duty disability for post-
          traumatic stress disorder in certain employees of Suffolk county

          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. The retirement and social security law is amended by adding
     2  a new section 605-g to read as follows:
     3    § 605-g. Accidental disability retirement  for  certain  employees  in
     4  Suffolk  county. Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter or of any
     5  general, special or local law to the contrary, any member who serves  in
     6  Suffolk county as a public safety dispatcher I, public safety dispatcher
     7  II, public safety dispatcher III, including Spanish speaking dispatchers
     8  in  such  titles,  emergency  service  dispatcher  I,  emergency service
     9  dispatcher II,  emergency  service  dispatcher  III,  including  Spanish
    10  speaking  dispatchers  in  such  titles,  emergency  complaint operator,
    11  including Spanish speaking operators in such title, public safety  offi-
    12  cer  I,  public  safety officer II, public safety officer III, including
    13  Spanish speaking officers in such titles, and case worker or case worker
    14  trainee in the department  of  social  services  family  and  children's
    15  service  administration,  child protective services investigating bureau
    16  and child protective preventative services bureau, who is diagnosed with
    17  post-traumatic stress disorder, resulting in disability or death to such
    18  member, presently employed, and who shall have sustained such disability
    19  while so employed, shall be presumptive evidence  that  such  disability
    20  was  incurred  in  the performance and discharge of duty and the natural
    21  and proximate result of an accident, unless the contrary  be  proved  by
    22  competent evidence; provided, however, that prior to entry into service,
    23  such  member  was  not  previously  diagnosed with post-traumatic stress
    24  disorder.
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 5713                             2
     1    § 2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary,  none
     2  of  the  provisions  of  this  act shall be subject to section 25 of the
     3  retirement and social security law.
     4    § 3. This act shall take effect immediately.
     5    FISCAL NOTE.--Pursuant to Legislative Law, Section 50:
     6    This  bill  would grant improved disability eligibility to any Tier 3,
     7  4, 5 or 6 member of the New York State and Local  Employees'  Retirement
     8  System  (NYSLERS)  employed  by  any municipality within Suffolk County,
     9  including Suffolk County itself, in the title of
    10    1. public safety dispatcher,
    11    2. public safety officer,
    12    3. emergency complaint operator,
    13    4. emergency service dispatcher, or
    14    5. case worker with the Department of Social Services.
    15    For any member so employed who is diagnosed with post-traumatic stress
    16  disorder, resulting in disability, such diagnosis shall be considered as
    17  presumptive evidence that the disability was incurred in the performance
    18  of the member's duties and the result of an accident, unless the contra-
    19  ry be proven by competent evidence and provided no  such  diagnosis  was
    20  made  prior  to  employment  with  Suffolk County. The annual accidental
    21  disability benefit for these members would be 1/3 of final average sala-
    22  ry (FAS). Currently, in order to receive a disability benefit of 1/3  of
    23  FAS, members must have at least ten years of service.
    24    Insofar  as this bill would affect the NYSLERS, if this legislation is
    25  enacted during the 2023 legislative session, it would lead to more disa-
    26  bilities being classified as "accidental". The cost will depend upon the
    27  applicant's age, service, and salary. It is estimated that the  per-per-
    28  son cost will be up to five and one half (5.5) times salary.
    29    All  costs  will  be  shared  by  the  State of New York and all local
    30  participating employers in the NYSLERS.
    31    The exact number of current members as  well  as  future  members  who
    32  could be affected by this legislation cannot be readily determined.
    33    Summary of relevant resources:
    34    Membership  data as of March 31, 2022 was used in measuring the impact
    35  of the proposed change, the same data used in the April 1, 2022 actuari-
    36  al valuation.  Distributions and other statistics can be  found  in  the
    37  2022  Report  of the Actuary and the 2022 Annual Comprehensive Financial
    38  Report.
    39    The actuarial assumptions and methods used are described in the  2020,
    40  2021,  and  2022  Annual  Report to the Comptroller on Actuarial Assump-
    41  tions, and the Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State  of  New  York:
    42  Audit and Control.
    43    The Market Assets and GASB Disclosures are found in the March 31, 2022
    44  New  York  State  and  Local  Retirement System Financial Statements and
    45  Supplementary Information.
    46    I am a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and meet the Quali-
    47  fication Standards to render the actuarial opinion contained herein.
    48    This fiscal note does not constitute a legal opinion on the  viability
    49  of  the  proposed change nor is it intended to serve as a substitute for
    50  the professional judgment of an attorney.
    51    This estimate, dated March 10, 2023, and intended for use only  during
    52  the  2023  Legislative  Session, is Fiscal Note No. 2023-98, prepared by
    53  the Actuary for the New York State and Local Retirement System.
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