For new workers, the bill raises the age for retirement without penalty to 62 from 55, imposes a 38 percent penalty on non-uniformed workers who retire before 62 and increases the minimum years of service to draw a pension to 10 from 5, according to Paterson’s office.
Overtime payments included in calculating pension benefits will be capped at $15,000 a year for civilian workers, and 15 percent of wages for police and firefighters.
Raising the retirement age from 55 to 62 (for new workers) is something that should have been done decades ago. 62 is too young for a full retirement age. If a country has the life expectancies we do they either need to have huge retirement savings (which for NY State would mean huge taxes to support that level of retirement savings) or live off the wealth saved in previous generations (or count on taxes of future generations).
Unfortunately for too long all of the USA we have chosen not to save for retirement when we work and then retire when we still have decades to live (on average). That is not sustainable. You can only add so much to the credit card (buy now let someone pay later strategy). Increasing from 55 to 62 is a good move. But it is too little and too late. More should be done.
Saving for retirement is not complicated. It is just that many people would rather speed money now and now save it. That is easy to understand but it is not helped if we make it sound like saving for retirement is hard. It takes some discipline. But certainly adults should be able to show some discipline. We have to stop acting like not saving for retirement is somehow acceptable. It is no more acceptable than those that had to store food for the winter a few hundred years ago deciding they would rather go swimming all summer and worry about the winter later.
And state governments should not provide out-sized retirement benefits which must be paid for by the taxpayers. 80 years ago maybe setting the retirement age at 55 made sense. It certainly did not for new workers in 1980 (or 1990 or 2000 at least now in 2009 they are making a move in the right direction).