State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says state and local governments will have to come up with more money for their workers’ pensions in the next fiscal year to offset losses in the stock market.
The average contribution rate to the state pension fund for public workers will rise from 16.3 percent of salaries to 18.9 percent. The average for the police and fire retirement system will rise from 21.6 percent to 25.8 percent.
DiNapoli says the pension fund, worth an estimated $146.5 billion on March 31, is still absorbing market losses from the national downturn two years ago despite subsequent gains.
Municipalities could pass some of the higher pension costs on to property taxpayers because the state’s new property tax cap has an exclusion for part of the pension hikes.