STATE OF NEW YORK
2019-2020 Regular Sessions
May 17, 2019
Introduced by M. of A. REYES, CRUZ, BRAUNSTEIN, DE LA ROSA, RAMOS,
M. G. MILLER, DICKENS, GRIFFIN, COLTON, SIMON, DeSTEFANO, LAWRENCE,
ORTIZ, SAYEGH, L. ROSENTHAL, RAIA, MIKULIN -- Multi-Sponsored by -- M.
of A. ENGLEBRIGHT -- read once and referred to the Committee on
Governmental Employees -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered
reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee
AN ACT to amend the general municipal law, in relation to disabilities
of certain retired firefighters caused by cancer
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. Section 207-kk of the general municipal law, as amended by
2 chapter 531 of the laws of 2003, is amended to read as follows:
3 § 207-kk. Disabilities of firefighters in certain cities caused by
4 cancer. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter to the
5 contrary, any condition of impairment of health caused by (i) any condi-
6 tion of cancer affecting the lymphatic, digestive, hematological,
7 urinary, neurological, breast, reproductive, or prostate systems or (ii)
8 melanoma resulting in total or partial disability or death to a paid
9 member of a fire department in a city with a population of one million
10 or more, or any retired member of such department who has been retired
11 for five or less years, who successfully passed a physical examination
12 on entry into the service of such department, which examination failed
13 to reveal any evidence of such condition, shall be presumptive evidence
14 that it was incurred in the performance and discharge of duty unless the
15 contrary be proved by competent evidence. The provisions of this section
16 shall remain in full force and effect [to and including the thirtieth
17 day of June, two thousand five] pursuant to section four hundred eighty
18 of the retirement and social security law.
19 § 2. The board of trustees of the New York City fire department
20 pension fund shall take appropriate administrative action to implement
21 the intent of section one of this act.
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 7716--A 2
1 § 3. This act shall take effect immediately.
FISCAL NOTE.--Pursuant to Legislative Law, Section 50:
SUMMARY OF BILL: This proposed legislation would amend General Munici-
pal Law (GML) Section 207-kk to allow retirees of the New York City Fire
Pension Fund (FIRE) who become disabled from an enumerated cancer within
five years of retirement use of the Cancer Bill presumptions.
Effective Date: Upon enactment.
BACKGROUND: Currently, the Cancer Bill presumption only applies to
active members of FIRE. The presumption is that the enumerated disabling
cancer resulted from an accident on the job, but the presumption of
causation can be rebutted by evidence to the contrary. If the presump-
tion is not rebutted by the Medical Board, the member is granted acci-
dental disability benefits.
FINANCIAL IMPACT - PRESENT VALUES: There is no data available to esti-
mate the number of members who might develop and become disabled by
cancer within five years of retirement, and potentially benefit from
this proposed legislation. Therefore, the estimated financial impact has
been calculated on a per-event basis equal to the increase in the Pres-
ent Value of Future Benefits (PVFB) for an average member who is diag-
nosed with cancer as the result of the enactment of the proposed legis-
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.
Based on the census data and the actuarial assumptions and methods
described herein, the enactment of this proposed legislation would
increase the PVFB by approximately $420,000, on average, for each occur-
rence of cancer within five years of retirement.
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
characteristics including the age, years of service, and salary history
of the member.
As there is no data currently available to estimate the number of
members who might be diagnosed with cancer within five years of retire-
ment, the financial impact would be recognized at the time of event.
Consequently, changes in employer contributions have been estimated
assuming that the increase in the PVFB will be financed over a time
period used under the current amortization period for actuarial losses.
Using this approach, the additional PVFB would be amortized over a
closed 15-year period (14 payments under the One-Year Lag Methodology
(OYLM) using level dollar payments.
Based on the Actuary's actuarial assumptions and methods in effect as
of June 30, 2018, the enactment of this proposed legislation is esti-
mated to increase annual employer contributions by approximately $50,000
for each Accidental Disability Retirement (ADR) reclassification due to
cancer within five years of retirement. With respect to the timing,
increases in employer contributions would depend upon when members would
be reclassified, but generally, increased employer contributions will
first occur the second fiscal year following approval of the ADR.
OTHER COSTS: Not measured in this Fiscal Note are the following:
* The initial, additional administrative costs of FIRE and other New
York City agencies to implement the proposed legislation.
* The impact of this proposed legislation on Other Postemployment
Benefit (OPEB) costs.
A. 7716--A 3
* The cost of any potential Special Accidental Death Benefits paid
pursuant to GML Section 208-f.
* The potential Line-of-Duty Death benefits paid to beneficiaries
should the member die within five years of retirement.
CENSUS DATA: The estimates presented herein are based on the census
data used in the Preliminary June 30, 2018 (Lag) actuarial valuation of
FIRE to determine the Preliminary Fiscal Year 2020 employer contrib-
There are 103 FIRE members who retired for service during Fiscal Year
2018 with an average age of approximately 56 years, average service of
approximately 29 years, average annual pension of approximately
$123,500, plus a Variable Supplements Fund (VSF) payment of $12,000 per
ACTUARIAL ASSUMPTIONS AND METHODS: The changes in the PVFB and annual
employer contributions presented herein have been calculated based on
the actuarial assumptions and methods in effect for the June 30, 2018
(Lag) actuarial valuations used to determine the Preliminary Fiscal Year
2020 employer contributions of FIRE. Also, based on the analysis of
World Trade Center disabilities from 2001 to 2017, it was estimated that
the ADR benefits are approximately 40% greater than the service retire-
RISK AND UNCERTAINTY: The costs presented in this Fiscal Note depend
highly on the actuarial assumptions and methods used and are subject to
change based on the realization of potential investment, demographic,
contribution, and other risks. If actual experience deviates from actu-
arial assumptions, the actual costs could differ from those presented
herein. 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.
STATEMENT OF ACTUARIAL OPINION: I, Sherry S. Chan, am the Chief Actu-
ary for, and independent of, the New York City Retirement Systems and
Pension Funds. I am a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries, an Enrolled
Actuary under the Employee Retirement Income and Security Act of 1974, a
Member of the American Academy of Actuaries, and a Fellow of the Confer-
ence of Consulting Actuaries. 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 2019-29 dated May 31,
2019 was prepared by the Chief Actuary for the New York City Fire
Pension Fund. This estimate is intended for use only during the 2019