CUNY Bulletin No. CU-713

City University of New York (CUNY) Health Benefits Buy-Out Waiver Program for Payment Cycle of 01/01/2021 – 06/30/2021
Date Issued
May 27, 2021


The purpose of this bulletin is to provide the City University of New York instructions for processing the CUNY Health Benefits Buy-Out Waiver Program.

Affected Employees

Employees of the City University of New York who are eligible to participate in the Health Benefits Buy-Out Waiver Program are affected.


The Health Benefits Buy-Out Waiver Program is authorized under IRC Section 125 and administered under the Medical Spending Conversion (MSC) Program. Employees receive an annual incentive payment in exchange for waiving their City health benefits when other non-City group coverage is available. The employee must complete the Health Benefits Application and the MSC Enrollment/Change Form. An employee will receive $1,000 for waiving family coverage or $500 for waiving individual coverage on a semi-annual basis. The maximum payment is $1,000; the payment must be prorated for any period less than 6 months.

Effective Dates

Effective Institution Pay Period 6L/7C, paychecks dated 07/01/2021.

Agency Actions

A listing of employees who elect to participate in the Health Benefits Buy-Out Waiver Program is sent to the CUNY Central Office by the Deputy Director of the NYC Management Benefits Fund, Tax-Favored Benefits and Citywide Programs. To pay the Health Benefits Buy-Out Payment to employees appearing on this list, agencies must submit the following information on the Time Entry Interface (NPAY502) or the Time Entry page using Earnings Code HBB – HB Buyout:

Earnings Begin Date: Pay Period 6L/7C End Date or the last date the employee was in pay status
Earnings End Date: Same as the Earnings Begin Date
Earn Code: HBB – HB Buyout
Amount: The amount designated on the listing

Errors and warning messages are communicated to the agency via Control-D report NPAY502 (Warning/Rejected Time Entry Transactions: Univ Management & Programs) and must be manually updated in PayServ as necessary.

Miscellaneous Payment Information

The Health Benefits Buy-Out earnings are not pensionable.

Tax Information

The CUNY Health Benefits Buy-Out Payment is supplemental taxable wages, will be included in the employee’s taxable gross and is subject to all employment and income taxes.

Federal, State, of New York City income tax withholding will be calculated using the Aggregate method. Yonkers income tax withholding will be calculated using the Flat Rate method (1.61135% for Yonkers residents and 0.50% for Yonkers non-residents).

Payroll Register and Employee’s Paycheck/Advice

The Earnings Code HBB and the amount paid will be displayed on the Payroll Register. The Earnings Description HB Buyout and the amount paid will appear on the employee’s paycheck stub or direct deposit advice.


Questions regarding this bulletin may be directed to the Payroll Earnings mailbox.