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Pumping up the public pensions

   New York state offers police the opportunity to retire at half pay after 20 years on the
job, or up to 75 percent of their salary after 32 years.

   But a Buffalo News analysis found some area officers get more.

   By working lots of overtime in their final year … or years … on the job, some officers pump
up their pensions to the point that they get as much in retirement as they did while working.

   And they often do it with tacit endorsement of their local governments, which negotiated
agreements allowing the pension boosting to occur.

   No one says that the police don't deserve a fair pension when it is time for them to
retire. The question is, what is fair?

   Do you think the negotiated salary-based pension rates are about right? Or do you think
they are too low, and that employees are perfectly justified in bumping them up through

   And, if you are in the private sector, how does this compare with your retirement plans?


… Susan Schulman



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