NY pension investment gains mean lower contribution rates for governments, higher funded ratio

Government And Institutions Associated Press

The contribution rates paid by state and local governments for New York's pension fund will go down as the retirement system continues to rebound from the 2008 downturn.

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Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says the average rate will decrease from 20.1 percent of salary for most public workers to 18.2 percent. For police and firefighters the employer rate will drop from 27.6 percent of payroll to 24.7 percent.

The rate reduction announcement comes as the state's pension system hit a record high of $180.7 billion. DiNapoli says the fund's "solid investment performance" means local taxpayers won't have to contribute as high a percentage toward their employees' retirement costs.

DiNapoli says that with recent investment gains the state's pension fund is now 92.2 percent funded. That's an increase from 88.7 percent.