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New York State and Local Retirement SystemOffice of the State Comptroller - Home

Retirement Plan

For ERS Tier 6 Members

(Article 15)

Final Average Salary (FAS)

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Your pension is based on your years of credited service and your final average salary (FAS). FAS is the average of the wages you earned during any five consecutive years of service when your earnings were highest. This is usually the last five years of employment.

If the earnings in any year included in the FAS period exceed the average of the previous four years of earnings by more than 10 percent, the amount in excess of 10 percent is excluded from the computation.

The calculation of your FAS can include, but is not limited to, the following types of payments. In some cases, certain restrictions may apply.

  • Regular salary;
  • Overtime up to the annual limit, if earned in the FAS period;*
  • Holiday pay;
  • Noncompensatory overtime earned in the FAS period;* and
  • Longevity payments (maximum of five), if earned in the years used in the FAS calculation.

*Reportable payments for overtime cannot exceed $15,000 for fiscal year 2012-13. This limitation may be adjusted each fiscal year based on the CPI as of December 31st of the previous year.

The following types of payments are not considered regular compensation and will not be included in your FAS calculation:

  • Lump sum vacation pay;
  • Wages reported from more than two separate employers;
  • Unused sick leave;
  • Payments made as a result of working your vacation;
  • Overtime payments that exceed the limitation;
  • Any payments that cause your salary to exceed that of the Governor;*
  • Any form of termination pay;
  • Payments made in anticipation of retirement;
  • Lump sum payments for deferred compensation; and
  • Any payments made for time not worked.

*Currently $179,000 annually.