Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Olean Mayor tells Assemblyman and local Senator to pass pension reform

(The same letter was sent to Sen. Cathy Young)

An open letter from Olean Mayor Linda Witte:

March 7, 2012

The Honorable Joseph M. Giglio
Room 439 Legislative Office Building
Albany, NY 12248

Westgate Plaza
700 W. State Street
Olean, NY 14760

Dear Assemblyman Giglio:

As the Mayor of the City of Olean I urge you to represent the needs of our constituents and pass Governor Cuomo’s pension reform proposal.

Reducing the cost of pension benefits is essential to preventing higher taxes for our residents and avoiding drastic cuts to vital local services. For years, special interest groups have successfully been obstacles to achieving real reform. We cannot afford to let that happen again this year. We urge you to stand up for the needs of the people you were elected to represent and vote to reform the State’s pension system.

The increasing unsustainability of New York State’s pension system has already placed a heavy burden on our budget and our taxpayers. Without significant reform now, this problem will soon become a crisis for the city of Olean and all other communities in this state. Under the Governor’s plan, the city would save $14,006,517 over the next 30 years, and not a single current employee would see any change in their pension benefits. Only future employees would be asked to contribute a little bit more to ensure that we can afford to deliver the benefits we are promising to our workers.

The City of Olean and our taxpayers are hoping we can count on you to provide the relief we so desperately need by passing meaningful pension reform as part of the State Budget.



Mayor Linda Witte

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