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March 21, 2013

A new license to double dip more deeply

E.J. McMahon

The final version of the Public Protection and General Government budget bill contains a new provision, originating in the legislative version of the proposal, that will allow the education commissioner to waive the $30,000 public employment earnings limitation for any retired police officer employed as a “school resource officer.”

According to the latest annual report of the New York State and Local Retirement System, non-disabled police and firefighters who retired in 2012 qualified for average annual retirement payments of $68,240. Adjusting for federal payroll and state income tax exemptions, that equates to a job paying roughly $75,000 a year. Most retired police officers also receive continuing taxpayer-subsidized health insurance coverage.

The specific clause is on page 37 of the bill:

Schools thinking of hiring recent police retirees should check applicants’ pension amounts before they agree to apply to the state for waivers. For recent retirees, the earnings limitation in combination with retirement allowance could easily equate to more than six figures. Why should taxpayers (who ultimately guarantee the pension fund) pay a higher amount in such cases?

Filed under: Public Pensions



    Comment by eatingdogfood — March 21, 2013 @ 9:12 am

  2. So schools get to hire employees for whom they have to pay no pension or health insurance costs?? The public guarantees the pension fund but if the actuaries have done their work properly, those benefits are already paid for. That’s much different than the public paying for them.

    Remind me again why this is a bad thing…..

    Comment by Garondah — March 21, 2013 @ 1:18 pm

  3. Pensions are for People who are retired from work. If still working they should pay at the highest possible rate.

    Comment by roger scheiber — March 24, 2013 @ 12:55 pm

  4. First realize that there are not enough police officers currently working to cover all of the schools that want them. Second when employing retired police officers, school districts do not incur training costs, medical benefit or pension costs. The hourly rate for a retired police officer is also less. So you are looking at $40K vs $90K. $50K would by a lot of dog food!

    Comment by By no means rich — March 26, 2013 @ 7:18 pm

  5. If this is NOT taking a job from another person, and the SRO salary would be spent anyway, I’m wondering if this really is a BIG DEAL, unless, of course, the SRO salary results in an increase in the individual’s future retirement. That’s not clear from this posting. I’d be interested to hear if that’s the case.

    Comment by Just wondering — May 22, 2013 @ 7:04 am

  6. How about we offer these positions to young unemployed veterans returning from service who would love these jobs at $30K.

    Comment by Suburban Cynic — May 22, 2013 @ 9:17 am

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