June 05, 2009

Call the hot line as Tier 5 threat returns

Source: NYSUT News Wire

Urgent call to action

NYSUT is urging members to call the AFL-CIO Legislative Hot Line at (877) 255-9417 and tell Gov. David Paterson to stop the Tier 5 retirement plan.

Addtionally, we encourage members to use NYSUT's legislative action site to send a free action letter to elected officials in the Assembly and Senate with just a few clicks.

About the proposal

Union legislative analysts say the Tier 5 proposal will require greater contributions from middle-class families over a longer period of time in exchange for diminished retirement eligibility and inferior retirement benefits. They say these changes will not save taxpayers a single dime over the near term and will provide only marginal savings over the longer term.

More specifically, this legislation would require employees to pay the 3% mandatory contribution forever; increase vesting from five to 10 years; eliminate the ability of members age 55 or older with 30 or more years of service to retire without penalty and increase the penalties for retirement prior to age 62 from a maximum of 27% to a maximum of 30.4%.

The plan would severely hamper the ability of public schools, colleges and universities to attract and retain quality educators, analysts said.

Join retirement systems now

The Teacher-Members on the state TRS board advise part-time members - if they have not done it already - to sign up for the pension system now as a Tier 4 member. It could soon be too late.