New York State is recovering very slowly from the longest recession since the Great Depression.
Suffolk County residents have shown their strength and resilience by making tough adjustments and
sacrifices for their families. Responsible choices and good fiscal policy also need to be practiced
by our state leaders. They have a duty to call upon all legislators to reform our broken economic
practices. That’s why I introduced the most significant pension reform legislation that Albany has
I continue to push for pension reform in New York as an advocate for eliminating, or reducing, overtime
from the calculation of pension benefits, a practice known as “pension padding.” I am demanding that our
state Assembly and Senate take action to correct a practice that defrauds taxpayers and crushes our
state economy. I also believe that reforming the pension system, starting with the removal of the
political class, defined as all politicians and political appointees, from the defined-benefit plan,
is the necessary first step toward getting the Empire state’s fiscal house in order.
We need to reform our budget by first removing the political class in New York State from the
defined-benefit pension system and place them into a defined-contribution plan such as a 401(k). By
doing so, we will stop pension padding by the political class immediately, make political patronage
jobs less attractive, and reduce the incentive to “take the path of least resistance” regarding New
York State’s most difficult fiscal issues. The time for serious and substantial pension reform is now.
This can, and must, be done.
Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick
No More Taxpayer-Funded
Pensions for Politicians!
Join My Fight Today!
The Governor and State Comptroller recently announced a proposal that would permit the state and its municipalities to borrow from the Common Retirement Fund to pay their existing pension contributions. Already, Suffolk County’s municipal pension costs are 50 percent above last year’s. Is this fiscal responsibility? Enough is enough.
The current pension system is breaking the bank:
- More than 1,000 suburban Long Island school administrators and teachers retiring with
pensions above $100,000 per year;
- “Double-dipping,” which allowed a Long Island superintendent to retire with an annual
payout of $316,000 while simultaneously collecting a $225,000 salary in another school district;
- A system which costs taxpayers a total of $2.5 billion annually;
- The political class controlling a retirement system that grants them benefits higher than
those who work in the private sector.
pensions protects you.
As your Assemblyman, I have sponsored
Assembly bill 6932
which would cap the
current retirement tier of all elected officials and non-civil service appointed employees in New
York state, and would create a new Defined Contribution Plan for these members of the political
How does the Defined Contribution Plan benefit you?
For the Taxpayers and Employers:
- The Defined Contribution Plan would effectively cap costs and provide stability in pensions;
- Taxpayers would no longer be forced to bear the risks associated with market downturns and
a decline in taxpayer revenues;
- Public pension costs would become both predictable and easily understandable while allowing
taxpayers to see the real cost of proposed benefit increases.
- Benefits would be portable. When workers change jobs, their retirement account can be
transferred or rolled over to an IRA;
- Employer contributions would become the worker’s property after just one year of employment;
- Employees would gain a greater degree of authority and discretion over their own retirement
plan as opposed to the current system; and
- All employees accumulate benefits on the same basis, regardless of government tenure.