New York Daily News

 May 12, 2017, 4:00 AM

  

 

City moves to appeal ruling that lets NYPD officers pay into their pensions while on maternity or paternity leave

BY GINGER ADAMS OTIS

PBA President Pat Lynch said an appeal of the ruling could hurt police families.  (ANTHONY DELMUNDO/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)

The city has filed an appeal to try and overturn a court ruling that said NYPD cops who are new parents can continue to pay into their pensions while out on leave.

The city submitted paperwork May 9 challenging the prior ruling — bringing the case to the state appeals court.

“We believe the lower court was legally incorrect in ruling that a certain category of officers can receive pension credit for the time they were away from work for child care,” a Law Department spokesman said.

“Pension credit for these officers is governed solely by a state pension statute, and it would need to be amended for these officers to become eligible,” the spokesman noted.

The suit was brought by the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association on behalf of 13,000 of its members who are part of the Tier 3 pension group hired after 2009.

Tier 3 cops who take maternity or paternity leave are not allowed to keep paying into their pensions while on extended leave to care for newborns, the PBA said.

But NYPD officers hired before 2009 do enjoy that benefit, the union said.

Current NYPD maternity policy allows a mother to take sick leave about a month before the due date, and it lasts roughly five to six weeks, according to NYPD policy.

Once that sick leave is used up, the mother can wipe out vacation days and then take up to 365 days of unpaid leave.

Two NYPD officers from Queens who are married and expecting their first child in October were thrilled when the first judge ruled in their favor.

The mother, who hoped to have an extended maternity leave, said it “took the pressure off” to know she could still pay into her pension during that period.

She and her husband said they were disappointed to learn the city was trying to overturn that ruling.

“We don’t understand why they would continue to defend a policy that is unfair to police officers with families,” the cop couple said.

Since both work nights in a Queens precinct, they’re now having to worry about which one will take the pension hit, they said.

“(This) leaves us in limbo ... We don’t know whether either of us will be able to take time off when our baby is first born ,” said the officers, who asked to remain anonymous.

PBA head Pat Lynch also expressed disappointment with the city’s action.

“The appeal of this ruling has the potential to hurt policer officers and police families. On behalf of the women and men who keep our streets safe, we hope they will reconsider this decision,” he said.