Employer contribution rates for the state's public pension funds will increase amid sustained uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, Comptroller Tom DiNapoli on Thursday said.
Contribution rates will grow from 14.6% to 16.2% for the employees reitrement system. Rates for the police and fire system will increase from 24.4% to 28.3%, DiNapoli said.
The higher rates come after several years of either flat growth or reduced rates for employers, which include local governments and taxing districts.
But longer life spans, lower-than-expected investment returns and a faster rate of retirement for some workers has led to the increase. At the same time, the market has been unpredictable.
“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create uncertainty in the financial markets and hurt Main Street, we are fortunate that our state pension fund entered this uncertain time as one of the strongest and best funded in the nation," DiNapoli said.
"We manage the fund to withstand tough challenges so that our public workforce can be confident their retirement benefits are secure. Keeping the plan well-funded has helped improve New York’s credit rating and avoided the budget problems faced by states with poorly-funded pensions.”