It pays to be an ex-cop in New York state these days.

Three-quarters of the 242 Nassau and Suffolk county cops who retired last year are receiving annual pensions of more than $100,000, a report by a think tank has found.

Former Yonkers officers are also raking it in, as two-thirds of the 39 cops in the Westchester city who filed for retirement in 2018 are pulling in six figures in retirement benefits, the Empire Center for Public Policy said.

The suburban cop with the fattest pension who retired last year is Nassau County Officer Jeff Fabre, 52, who walked into the sunset with a $221,086 package, the report said.

According to payroll records, Fabre had total pay of $326,950 in 2017. But he had just a base salary of $122,514, according to records previously posted by Newsday. He more than doubled his income through overtime and other supplemental pay and benefits.

Another Nassau officer, Thomas Papaccio, 59, retired with a $179,440 pension. Papaccio also had a base salary of $122,000 but raked in $85,246 in overtime in 2017, as well as other supplemental benefits that boosted his total salary to $234,903. His 2018 salary was $254,991.

A new state law approved in 2012 caps at 15 percent overtime pay that can be used to boost a pension — to rein in massive pension padding. But workers hired before 2012 can apply substantial OT to inflate their final salary and pensions.

A Nassau County watchdog blamed lax overtime rules for the county police department’s gold-plated pensions. He said officers also get a lump-sum payment of $100,000 when they retire.

“The contracts give away the store,” said George Marlin, a former board member of the Nassau County Interim Finance Authority. “The cops get away with murder out there.”

Marlin says the pension and OT rules are outdated and unsustainable. He said police officers often retire in their 40s after 20 years on the force and then can live for another 40 years or more.

“Is it fair for the average guy making $50,000 a year to pay for someone else’s $100,000 retirement benefit who starts a second career?” he asked. “It’s an outrage. It’s an archaic system and no one has the will to change them.”

The Empire Center’s E. J. McMahon said the higher salaries that suburban cops get compared to New York City officers factors into the higher pensions. But he noted that is offset somewhat by a $12,000 supplemental pension that city cops get on top of their regular pension, which is about 50 percent of final salary.

© 2019 New York Post

You may also like

Here’s Cuomo’s Plan for Reopening New York

Jesse McKinley ALBANY, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Monday presented a soft blueprint for how New York State’s economy might begi Read More

States with few virus cases get big share of relief aid

Geoff Mulvihill Alaska, Hawaii, Montana and Wyoming are not epicenters of the coronavirus pandemic. Yet these four states scored big this spri Read More

What to expect in the state’s first round of spending cuts

Rebecca Lewis Regular viewers of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s daily coronavirus press briefings have heard the governor say time and again that New York state is broke. Revenue projections are way down and the state is facing a budget deficit that is Read More

Eyeing Medicaid Cuts, Cuomo Puts His Stamp On A $3 Trillion Stimulus Bill

Caroline Lewis During state budget discussions in March, Governor Andrew Cuomo  that the pandemic would not stop him from pushing through changes to Medicaid that he said were necessary to contain the growth of its more than $70 billion annu Read More

Hospitals, nursing homes face another Medicaid cut during pandemic

Michael Gormley ALBANY — The state told hospitals and nursing homes this week that they will be hit with another cut in Medicaid funding as the health care system reels from costs related to fighting the COVID-19 virus and state revenue plum Read More

Port Authority’s Bloated Payroll Grew $150 Million Last Year: Report

Eve Kessler he Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s payroll ballooned by $150 million last year — a bad look when the agency is asking the federal government , including the . According to the Empire Center, a conservative-lean Read More

Regional leaders play limited role in Western New York’s reopening

Caitlin Dewey Western New York’s regional “control room” meets by phone for as long as an hour each day, opening with a briefing from Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul before officials trade local updates, case numbers and complaints. The group, Read More

Cuomo criticized for not exempting out-of-state health care workers from income tax

Joe Chen New York policy leaders say that Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to not exempt out-of-state health care workers from the state’s income tax makes the state appear ungrateful for their help. “Cuomo told those he was asking to com Read More


Sign up to receive updates about Empire Center research, news and events in your email.


Empire Center for Public Policy
30 South Pearl St.
Suite 1210
Albany, NY 12207

Phone: 518-434-3100
Fax: 518-434-3130


The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.