From CBS 2:
Prospective full-time teachers are scrambling to get into the current state pension tier before a reform measure designed to save New York taxpayers billions of dollars takes effect New Year's Day.
The change adopted earlier this month means new hires will receive less generous retirement benefits than teachers vested under the current pension plan -- unless they followed the teachers' union guide to lock into the richer plan.
Teachers joining after Jan. 1 will have to pay 3.5 percent of their salary toward their pension for as long as they work. Currently employed teachers pay 3 percent for the first 10 years of service, then pay nothing.
As of Tuesday, 3,198 workers had joined the pension system this month under the more generous tier -- about three times the number who joined a year ago, according to data from the state Teachers Retirement System.