Contribution Stabilization Program
The Contribution Stabilization Program is an optional program that establishes a graded contribution rate system. If you elect to participate, it enables you to pay a portion of your annual contribution over time, leading to smoother, more predictable pension costs.
This option was first available in fiscal year 2011. If you did not elect to participate in a previous fiscal year, you can opt into the program now or in the future. You must complete the Employer Contribution Stabilization Program election form available on the “How to Pay” page of our Employer Invoices application and submit it with your payment. You will still have the option to prepay your annual contribution by December 15.
Once you amortize, you cannot withdraw from the program. This means that if future contribution rates are less than the graded rate employers who participate in the program will be required to pay the graded rate. These excess payments (the difference between the normal contribution and the graded rate) will first be applied to pay amortized amounts. If all amortized amounts have been paid, any additional contributions will be deposited in a reserve fund and used to offset future rate increases. Payments into the reserve account continue until such time as the payments deposited in the fund equal the employer’s total salary base. However, you do not have to amortize each year and you can choose to amortize less than the maximum amount allowed.
Amortizations are paid over a ten-year period at an interest rate comparable to taxable fixed income investments of a similar duration. The interest rate for amounts amortized in fiscal year 2016 is 3.21 percent. The final 2017 amortization figure will be shown on your February 1, 2017 estimate, which will be available in August 2016. You can prepay amortized amounts without penalty.
Under this program, no money is taken from the New York State Common Retirement Fund. In addition, the calculation of future employer contribution rates and the System’s funded ratio are not affected.
This presentation will tell you what you need to know before deciding whether the option is right for you. If you have questions or need additional information after reading this presentation, please email Employer Services or contact our Billing Unit at 518-473-0681 or 518-474-9236.