Bye-bye, pension reform? by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

The inevitable is now official: Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver today said Governor Cuomo should “work out” his proposed Tier 6 pension reform with public-sector labor unions. As the governor himself pointed out just last week, the Legislature effectively prefers to give unions a “veto” over any change–which, if it sticks, means there will no meaningful change at all.

Mystery solved by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

An alert reader has provided the answer to a question posed on this blog yesterday: how or where did the state’s largest public employee union come up with its estimate that Governor Cuomo’s proposed Tier 6 pension plan will “reduce benefits” by 40 percent?

Mystery solved by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

An alert reader has provided the answer to a question posed on this blog yesterday: how or where did the state’s largest public employee union come up with its estimate that Governor Cuomo’s proposed Tier 6 pension plan will “reduce benefits” by 40 percent?

Dear CSEA: Explain your numbers, please! by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

The proposed Tier 6 pension for a general employee of state and local government who retires at age 65 after 30 years of service would be 50 percent of final average salary. The Tier 5 pension at the same age and for the same career duration is 60 percent of final average salary. In other words, measured on this basis, the Tier 6 benefit will be 17 percent less than the Tier 5 benefit.

Pension Casino Royale by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

OK—I admit it. Those protestors outside our pension reform event in Albany today did get one thing right. I do think people need to “gamble” some of their retirement savings on Wall Street.

Meanwhile, on the mandate relief front by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

Governor Cuomo’s 2012-13 budget, to be presented later today, will command media attention for the rest of the week. Advance reports on his modified pension reform proposal are especially promising. Meanwhile, there’s a (fiscally) cost-free approach to helping local governments and school districts alleviate their budget problems: repealing the Triborough Amendment.

The quest for “SeeThrough” pension data by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

In a landmark case revolving around key provisions of New York’s Freedom of Information Law, the Empire Center is asking the state’s highest court to review lower-court rulings that would enable the New York City Police Pension Fund — and, potentially, the state’s other public pension systems, as well — to keep secret the names of retired employees receiving taxpayer-guaranteed pension benefits.