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Pension sweeteners a bitter prospect for New York City

New York City police officers and firefighters, including those hired since the new benefit tier went into effect, get extremely generous compensation, including pension benefits. They can count virtually all overtime toward their pensions while many large cities exclude overtime entirely and New York state limits it to about 15% of base salary for troopers and other local law enforcement officers. The average annual pension for a recently retired NYC police officer is $74,500 and $118,000 for a recently retired firefighter, compared to $35,000 for a civilian employee. (Reasonable concerns about inadequate disability benefits for junior uniformed employees were addressed in targeted enhancements enacted last year.) The value of total compensation for a police officer at 5½ years of service can reach over $200,000.

Carol Kellermann

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