Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Bill targeting pension abuse passed by State Legislature


Bill targeting pension abuse passed by State Legislature

The New York State Legislature passed legislation* on June 20, 2011 to enhance State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli’s ability to catch those who abuse the state pension system.

The bill grants the Comptroller’s office access to State Department of Taxation and Finance's wage reporting system to identify New York State and Local Retirement System retirees working for local governments in order to determine if any exceed the retirement earnings limitation set out in the Retirement and Social Security Law. If a state or local government employee earns more than those limits, the Comptroller has the authority to suspend and recoup any excess payments made with respect to the pension portion of the individual’s retirement allowance.

The Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL) places limits on the amount that may be earned by a retiree who returns to public employment with the State as an employer, or with a political subdivision of the State, without it affecting his or her retirement allowance.** Most retirees are covered by Section 212 of the RSSL, which allows retirees under age 65 to earn up to $30,000 per calendar year without any penalty with respect to the pension portion of his or her retirement allowance.

Currently, the Retirement System annually compares retiree information with payroll data for state employees.  However, no similar mechanism existed to check payroll information of the thousands of local public employers statewide.

* Assembly 7911; Senate 5460

** See §210 et. seq. of the Retirement and Social Security Law..

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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