Among a handful of so-called “pension sweeteners” passed in the final days of the 2014 session by both houses of the Legislature was a bill that would be the first rollback of Tier 6 – a pension reform championed and touted by the Cuomo administration.

In a CapTon interview that will air this evening at 8 p.m. and 11:30 p.m., the Empire Center’s EJ McMahon flagged the bill and sounded a note of caution for the governor.

According to McMahon, one of the key reforms of Tier 6 was to end early retirement for public employees, in which workers could retire as young as 55 after 30 years on the job and not see a reduction in their pensions.

But this bill, sponsored by Republican Sen. Marty Golden, of Brooklyn, would restore the 55/30 standard for all unionized members of the unified court system, and also reduce the retirement age from 63 to 62.

This was a favor for the state’s 4,000 unionized court officers, who argued that they need early retirement because their job is uniquely stressful.

“That’s something everyone in every occupation would claim on a bad day,” McMahon noted, adding that if the governor signs this bill into law, it will set a bad precedent and endanger the modest reforms represented by Tier 6.

“Here’s the pattern of undoing previous so-called pension reforms going back 30 years,” McMahon said.

“One union starts the landslide. They get it undone – like the loose thread on a sweater. And then everybody comes up and says, ‘Well, they got this, we should have it, too. If the governor signs this, the other pieces will fall off in due order.”

McMahon also noted with distaste that this bill passed – as these things tend to do – “like greased lightning” on the session’s final scheduled day (June 19th) with no debate whatsoever.