Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York's second largest union of state government employees just announced a tentative contract deal that, if ultimately extended to all state workers, could add roughly $1.5 billion in salary costs to New York's budget by fiscal 2019.
Cuomo said the state had agreed to raise salaries for Public Employees Federation (PEF) members by 2 percent a year over three years, or a cumulative 6.12 percent, starting in the current fiscal year.
Some of New York’s worst tendencies in bargaining with government unions were on display yesterday in Buffalo—even before the school board illegally took things behind closed doors.
The Empire Center found city school-custodian engineers were the highest-paid group of city employees in 2014, earning an average of $109,467.
And their union contract made it impossible to fire them unless they were jailed. Some custodians did stellar work — but many schools looked like dumps.
For thousands of state and municipal employees, this coming June will mark more than the end of the legislative session. It will also likely bring a decision in a closely watched U.S. Supreme Court case that could forever change the face of public employee unions in New York and nationwide.
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments today in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, and the stakes couldn’t be higher for New York’s politically powerful public-sector unions.
Working for the MTA is the fast track to a six-figure salary.
One in four Metropolitan Transportation Authority employees made $100,000 or more in 2014, according to payroll data released by the Empire Center Thursday.
The same day a report came out that partly attributed a rapid rise in M.T.A. costs to a union contract brokered by Governor Andrew Cuomo, Cuomo said he was "not in a position to say whether $800 million in overtime is a lot of money or a little money."
New York City’s pension costs will reach nearly $8.8 billion in the coming 2016 fiscal year — more than double the 2006 level and nearly eight times the 2001 amount.
Yet now, with a week to go in the state legislative session, Albany is poised to drive those costs even higher.