Cuomo: Pension fund earnings show “we are not out of this yet”

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A new earnings report on the state pension fund shows New York is not out of the fiscal waters yet, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said today.

Speaking to reporters following his speech at the state Democratic Conference meeting in Albany, Cuomo was asked what he made of yesterday’s earnings report from the Comptroller’s Office, which pegged the value of the state’s Common Retirement Fund at $150.3 billion on March 30, the end of the state fiscal year. That marked a 5.96 percent rate of return from the previous year, less than the long-term projected rate of 7.5 percent.

Here’s what Cuomo had to say:

“I think it was, I believe it was below the projection. So I think it’s another caution sign that the state, we are not out of this yet and these financial pressures are very real. And the financial pressures on the taxpayers are very real. So it’s just more of the same, but we’ve made a lot of changes. We’re not out of the woods. We’ve stabilized the finances, but it’s not that revenues are roaring back either. These ongoing pension costs are going to be very, very difficult for local governments to sustain, and make no mistake, it’s coming right out of the pocket of the taxpayer.”

Escalating pension costs for governments was a major issue for Cuomo earlier this year, when he and lawmakers agreed — after much cajoling — to introduce a new pension tier that pared back benefits for new state and local government employees. Cuomo and DiNapoli clashed about a proposal that would have allowed new workers to opt for a 401k-style retirement fund, and the option was ultimately only offered to high-earning, non-union employees.

When Cuomo was asked if more needs to be done to rein in pension costs, he said the state will “have to watch it.”

“But to the extent that we’re not where we need to be in performance on the fund, someone’s going to have to pay, and ultimately it’s the taxpayer,” Cuomo said.

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8 Comments

  1. Hand me that Hammer on

    DiNapoli is nothing other than a union tool bent upon bankrupting the taxpayer and homeowner until such time as Obama’s gang can effectuate a totally dismal socialist quagmire.

  2. “Not out of this yet?” We’re still right in the middle of it. Historically, when unemployment is high, wages go down, except of course for the hordes of bloodsucking teachers’ and municipal employees’ unions in the USA whose effective paychecks go up and up and they say ” damn the depression” and “damn the taxpayer.” Liberal politicians are happy to buy right into it, furthering the malaise and the bankrupting of the homeowner.

  3. The pension fund makes money with its investments. It’s not all on the backs of the taxpayer. Perhaps people would prefer no government at all and live like it was in the 1800″s outhouses and dirt roads, and guns.
    The best thing the state could do is stop allowing overtime to be added into retiree’s pensions. Cops and firemen are walking away with pension greater then their annual salaries. For the most part, the average union worker has a pension of $16,000 a year. And many of them have been paying into the pension in addition to the pension investments, so it really isn’t entirely on the backs of the people. Union people pay taxes too. Workers pay for medicaid and medicare, and housing supplements and grant money to non for profits and so on.

  4. RealityCheck on

    WOW – Do you really think that attacking the public worker is still the way to go? Why not look at all of the facts and issues – the working man is not the problem. Regardless of party affiliation, blaming the worker is getting old.

  5. Reality Chick on

    This so called public sector “working man” who rakes in over 100M per year (not including perks, bloated pensions, and assorted other goodies) are generally undereducated, (and that includes teachers whose “advanced” degrees are in NO definitive subject) pampered, and serve only to bankrupt the homeowners who pay more in school and property taxes than they do for their actual mortgages. Furthermore, the school system is an obvious and documented dismal failure. The fault lies not so much with them personally, but with the pusillanimous politicians, school “administrators” and lefty hypocrites who have allowed (and continue to allow) all this horror to perpetuate itself.

  6. Reality Chick : here is some reality for you:

    Except for political hacks (appointees) ALL civil service workers must take qualifying exams to get and keep their jobs.
    In addition, most positions above the title of clerk and laborer require a college degree to select from among the best qualified.
    Your statement that municipal workers are …”generally uneductated..” is a lie and you are a liar.

    It is very unfortunate that the private sector has exploited good workers, reduced or removed good pensions and reduced salaries when compared to inflation for the last 30 years but dont be blaming the municipal workers for that.
    All workers in the USA deserve a decent pension and good benefits and screaming that we all settle for less and less including you is not the answer in the richest country in the world.

  7. Reality Chick on

    Yr last sentence is reminiscent of Rome before the final fall. And Venezuela.