Oct 132010

Mary W. Walsh in The New York Times in October 2010 reported that the municipalities of New York face $200 billion in health care benefits to retirees.

  • The health benefits are separate from the pensions.
  • “Governments have reported their pension obligations for years, but their retiree medical obligations have been building up unseen, because governments were not required to account for them.”
  • “Most credit analysts seem to expect that if a municipality has to default on something, it will default on its retiree health promises, not on its bonds. Pensions, meanwhile, are considered protected by the New York State constitution.”
  • New York City has a retiree health obligation of $62 billion, more than it’s outstanding debt, and roughly equivalent to the state of California.
  • Every resident in Syracuse is responsible for $11,200 of the city’s retired workers’ health care costs; Buffalo’s residents $9,008; New York City’s residents $7,386.

To read the entire article, click on N.Y. Faces $200 Billion in Retiree Health Costs.

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