In a recent letter to Senator Neil Breslin and Assemblyman Ron Canistrari, Cohoes Mayor John McDonald asked both of them to support the Tier VI retirement plan in the budget.  You can read the article at http://bit.ly/yOpsej.

As you read, pay particular attention to the comments of Assemblyman Canistrari.  He states, “…But, on the other hand, Tier VI cuts pension benefits by 40 percent. That is unacceptable. I will stand for the rights and benefits of the average worker.”  I simply do not get his comment.  Is he talking about ALL average workers or just a select few?

Here is something that confuses me.  How can you stand up for people that are not currently employed by the state or local government?  And how can you stand up for them and at the same time disrespect EVERY resident in the state who pays taxes?  That is simply WRONG…in my opinion.

Let’s keep in mind that Tier VI applies to FUTURE workers and does nothing to current employees.  And while Tier VI saves Cohoes more than $17.2M over the next 30 years, it will save New York taxpayers overall more than $113B in that same 30 years.  How can you not support that kind of savings?

What really burns me about statements like those of the Assemblyman is that they fail to recognize two significant points:

  1. We, the taxpayers, are responsible for the pension system.  We, the taxpayers, cannot afford this burden any longer
  2. The DC plan that was put forth is a better CHOICE for future workers who want more mobility.  We covered that in a previous blog post, http://blog.unshackleupstate.com/2012/02/the-myth-monster-strikes-again/

So once again we are faced with an elected official that fails to understand that we can no longer expect 90% of the people of the State of New York that are not public employees to pay for something that they themselves do not receive.  It is time for all state elected officials to let future workers have a choice in their retirement and help the AVERAGE New York resident afford to remain here.