New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos

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Gotham Gazette City Council Considers New Office to Aid Non-Profits by Samar Khurshid

City Council Considers New Office to Aid Non-Profits

separate study published in April by Seachange Capital Partners, a nonprofit merchant bank, found that contract delays in the 2018 fiscal year became “slightly worse” than the previous year. It found that social service contracts were registered an average of 221 days after their start date, up from 210 days in the 2017 fiscal year; only 11% were on time, slightly better than the 9% in 2017; and 20% continued to be unregistered after one year, marginally worse than the 19% in 2017. The report estimated that the fiscal burden on nonprofits from registration delays was as much as $744 million, up from $675 million in 2017.

“A nonprofit delivering services under an unregistered contract faces a growing cash flow burden associated with the unreimbursed expenses. It must also pay interest and fees on the debt it uses to finance this cash flow need – if it can be financed at all,” the study reads.

Council Members Rosenthal and Kallos cited that study in a July joint op-ed, criticizing the city’s “broken procurement system” and how delays affect nonprofits. “New Yorkers deserve the best services, and the CBOs providing those services deserve to be paid fairly and on time by a city government they can hold accountable. Overhauling the procurement system may be bureaucratic and slow in nature, but it is necessary if we are to properly serve the New Yorkers who are most in need,” they wrote, citing separate legislation they introduced to achieve that goal.

New York Daily News Loophole allows people with city business to shower thousands on candidates despite contribution limits by Anna Sanders

Loophole allows people with city business to shower thousands on candidates despite contribution limits

 “There is no question that someone doing business with the city is only going to bundle because they think it will help their bottom line,” Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan) said.

Critics of the loopholes hope an increase in the public match, from 6-to-1 to 8-to-1 for certain donations, will help curb big-money influence in the 2021 elections.

“Hopefully that disincentives this behavior,” Kallos said.

The Chief-Leader Seeing Need, Mayor and Council Out To Establish Private Retirement Plan by Crystal Lewis

Seeing Need, Mayor and Council Out To Establish Private Retirement Plan

“Retirement should be for everybody, not just for people who work in offices here in Manhattan, and not just for people lucky enough to have a pension,” Onza Lynch, a Bronx commercial carter, said at a Sept. 23 rally to push legislation that would establish a universal retirement savings plan for private-sector employees across the city.

Mayor de Blasio, City Council Members I. Daneek Miller and Ben Kallos, and advocate groups including the American Association of Retired Persons spoke of the importance of retirement security at the City Hall event.

Politico De Blasio drives campaign themes, even after campaign is over by By JOE ANUTA

De Blasio drives campaign themes, even after campaign is over

Mayor Bill de Blasio officially dropped his bid for the White House last week, but on Monday he rallied for legislation that could have been plucked from his campaign and discussed plans to continue crisscrossing the country to promote progressive causes.

The bill would create a system that automatically enrolls workers at companies with 10 or more employees into individual retirement accounts. A mayoral board would oversee the program and hire a private financial management firm to handle the pre-tax money withheld from workers' paychecks. Neither employers nor the city would have to chip into the fund, and firms that already offer a retirement program would be exempt. Employees who are put into the program can choose to opt out or change their contribution rate, which would automatically start at 3 percent.

ABC7 New York City unveils new plan to help workers save for retirement by Dave Evans

New York City unveils new plan to help workers save for retirement

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has unveiled a new retirement plan for people who work for private companies.

The mayor rallied at City Hall Monday for a retirement savings plan that President Trump and Republicans have tried to stop.

In New York City, more than 1 million people have no retirement plan other than Social Security. Most who do have a plan have only saved about $12,000.

So many are like Onza Lynch, a commercial carter who hauls tons of cardboard every day.

"I've worked every day since I was a teenager, now I'm 49 years old and I'm speaking to you today as someone who wishes they could've started saving for a retirement plan 30 years ago," said Lynch.

WCBS Radio Retirement Plan Under New Bill by Al Jones

Retirement Plan Under New Bill

Nearly 2 million New Yorkers would be automatically enrolled in a retirement savings plan under a new proposal before the City Council.

As WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reports, about 1.5 million private sector employees do not have access to a retirement savings program through their workplace.

The Universal Retirement Security bill, which has the support of Mayor Bill de Blasio would change that.

“Over a million New Yorkers work their whole lives and have nothing to show for it,” Mayor de Blasio said in a statement. “Rather than work until the day they die, Universal Retirement Security will allow more New Yorkers to breathe a sigh of relief later in life and truly enjoy the years they’ve earned.”

Co-sponsor of the legislation, Councilman Ben Kallos, explained that companies would not contribute to the Universal Retirement Savings Program and stressed that it would cost employers nothing.

Gotham Gazette After Rally with De Blasio, City Council Hears Bills on Private Sector Retirement Security by Samar Khurshid

After Rally with De Blasio, City Council Hears Bills on Private Sector Retirement Security

Just days after he ended his presidential campaign that was focused on issues affecting working people, Mayor Bill de Blasio rallied with AARP volunteers and City Council Members at City Hall on Monday to push for a proposal that could help millions of New York workers save for their futures.

The Retirement Security for All proposal, which de Blasio first raised three years ago and then again in his State of the City speech this year, would establish a retirement savings program for private-sector employees whose employers do not currently provide those options, and a city government board to oversee its implementation.

There are two bills in the legislative package that would create the system and the board and sponsored by Council Members I. Daneek Miller and Ben Kallos, who led a hearing on the proposal shortly after the Monday morning rally.

“You should not have to work until you die,” de Blasio said at the rally. “You should be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor. You should be able to have some time in your life when you retire with dignity.”

The mayor said that 40% of New Yorkers aged 50-64 have less than $10,000 saved for when they retire.

Crain's New York De Blasio makes push for city-run universal retirement program by Will Bredderman

De Blasio makes push for city-run universal retirement program

The bill, sponsored by Queens Councilman I. Daneek Miller and Manhattan Councilman Benjamin Kallos, would apply to any private sector employer of 10 employees or more. Kallos promised at the event that it would cost businesses nothing, though they would be responsible for making the deductions from their payroll and giving the set-aside funds to the city. 

The legislation would automatically dock 3% of an employee's income, although the individual could choose to subsequently adjust that figure or opt out of the program entirely. De Blasio estimated that the new retirement system would have a "small initial start-up cost" of $1.5 million to $3 million annually for the first three years, after which it would sustain itself off investment earnings.

New York Daily News Mayor de Blasio pushes automatic retirement accounts for NYC workers by Shant Shahrigan

Mayor de Blasio pushes automatic retirement accounts for NYC workers

“Because of the lack of coverage, we are going to face a crisis in the next 10 years,” New School Professor Teresa Ghilarducci, who co-authored the study, told the Daily News.

She applauded the legislation from Councilmen Daneek Miller (D-Brooklyn) and Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan), saying, “It makes a huge difference” for both young and old workers.

Crain's New York Make Retirement Savings Plans Accessible to All New Yorkers by Ben Kallos, I. Daneek Miller, Beth Finkle

Make Retirement Savings Plans Accessible to All New Yorkers

At 73 years old, Kitty Ruderman enjoys being retired. She volunteers with a number of nonprofits, including AARP, advocating on behalf of folks like herself. She’s grateful to have no major health issues draining her energy or her bank account. But with her rent higher than her Social Security income, she’s worried. If her cost of living doesn’t go up – if she doesn’t get sick, if her rent doesn’t increase, if she has no new expenses – she estimates that she can maintain her current lifestyle for another 10 years. After that, she doesn’t know.

Middle- and low-income New Yorkers increasingly struggle to pay the bills and even seniors like Kitty, who worked for decades saving for retirement, are among those hit hardest by the City’s affordability crisis.

The most recent data show that more than one third of New Yorkers between the ages of 50 and 64 have less than $10,000 saved for retirement. Most of these folks are disproportionately people of color.  White 50-plus New Yorkers’ retirement incomes are almost double that of black, Asian and Latino New Yorkers, and the majority of 50-plus New Yorkers of color are likely to retire with incomes near the poverty threshold.