From the NY Post:
State lawmakers passed a landmark bill this morning to cut pension benefits for future public employees — saving the city about $22 billion over 30 years.
The state and other localities would save around $60 billion.
"This bold and transformational pension reform plan is a historic win for New York taxpayers and municipalities," Gov. Cuomo said. "Without this critical reform, New Yorkers would have seen significant tax increases, as well as layoffs to teachers, firefighters and police."
The "pension Tier VI" bill, praised by Mayor Bloomberg, received final passage from the Assembly 93-45 around 7 a.m.- after a struggle to round up enough votes from reluctant majority Democrats. It passed the state Senate earlier this morning.
Gov. Cuomo, on the brink of another major victory, makes his case for pension reform yesterday
The bill capped an all-night session and was part of a mega-deal to expand the state’s DNA databank, move toward legalization of casinos and redraw state legislative district lines.
Gov. Cuomo’s original pension proposal would have saved $113 billion over the next three decades.
But he agreed to concessions demanded by lawmakers who are all up for re-election this year and rely on donations and political organizing from unions that strongly opposed the Cuomo plan.
From the NY Post:
Pension reform could be in jeopardy.
Even though Gov. Cuomo signed the state’s newest pension tier into law yesterday, state officials now fear a court challenge to the plan on the grounds that it was illegally approved by the state Senate.
Democrats have claimed that majority-party Republicans lacked enough senators present in the chamber for a legitimate vote on the bill.
Most Senate Democrats had stormed out of the chamber earlier to protest a limit on debate over a separate redistricting bill.
But Sen. Daniel Squadron (D-Brooklyn) stayed to argue that the Senate lacked the minimum of 38 senators needed for what he called the budget-related pension bill.
With only the 32 majority Republicans, Squadron and the four breakaway “Independent Democratic Conference” members in the Senate, just 37 of all 62 senators were in the chamber.
Republicans insisted that the pension-reform bill wasn’t budget-related and therefore didn’t require three-fifths of the Senate to be present.
Though Senate Democrats and anti-Tier VI unions yesterday denied having any plans to sue over the vote, a high-level state source said, “We expect that a lawsuit will be filed, either by the Senate Democrats or one of the public-employee unions that are trying to fight this."