The governor’s budget is out and it contains some language that could be very negative for PEF members and state employees in general. There are many areas of concern but some of the most troubling are:
The Governor’s attempt to increase health insurance costs for those state workers who retire after October 1, 2016, with less than 30 years of service.
The Governor proposes to end the Medicare Part B reimbursement to higher income retirees and cap the reimbursement without a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) consideration, which means more out-of-pocket costs for retirees.
The Governor also wants to change many aspects of the Workers’ Compensation system to the detriment of the injured worker. Some of the changes include amending how the average weekly wage is calculated, ending future deposits to the Aggregate Trust Fund (ATF), removing the requirement that cases remain with the same Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) and increasing the time that injured workers must remain in their employer’s Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) network from 30 to 120 days.
Governor Cuomo also continues to rely upon expensive private consultant contractors to do work which has been always been done by state employees at a lower cost. Two areas in this year’s budget where that is once again evident are the design-build program and the Office of Information Technology Services (OITS).
Last but certainly not least, the Governor continues to shrink the workforce of state agencies that serve those with developmental disabilities or mental health issues. At the Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD), 255 positions will be lost through attrition, along with the closing of the Broome Developmental Center and the Fineson Developmental Center. At the Office of Mental Health, a net loss of 122 positions will be realized.
So Please, print two copies (one for your state senator and one for your assembly person) of the attached letter PAC PAL letter 2 22 16, write in your name and address and then send it to PEF’s legislative office at:
PEF Legislative Office
90 State St
Albany, NY 12207
- Note: You may also ask your steward to forward this information to the legislative office.
Once received PEF will write in your legislator’s name, add any additional information needed and forward the letter.
Please check back periodically as there will be another letter generated shortly to address the other issues in the governor’s budget. Thank You for supporting yourselves! Together we are strong!
For further information on the governor’s budget and PEF’s positions please see: budget memo to legislators 21116