Governor Cuomo signed a law that allowed a dying state trooper to "retire" and his wife and child to collect a lifelong pension.

According to the Post, state narcotics officer and Nyak resident Richard O'Brien fell while he was repairing his mother's roof in 2009; in the hours before his death, O'Brien's colleges completed paperwork so he could "retire" on disability and have the pension provide for his wife and unborn child, but they filed them several hours after his death. Courts denied O'Brien's wife's lawsuits to collect the pension, but Governor Cuomo signed a provision that made the trooper's retirement "timely."

“This was an extraordinary situation, where the family of a decorated member of the New York State Police was denied benefits due to bureaucracy and circumstances outside of their control,” a Cuomo spokesman told the paper. “Simply put, signing this bill righted a wrong.”

Citizens Union head Dick Dadey called the situation "understandable but unseemly."

“Retirement is a planned event, not a technical act made on someone’s behalf while dying,” Dadey said.

O'Brien's pension cannot exceed 30% of the average of his last three years of service; at the time of his death, a 12-year employee of the State Police and veteran in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan was earning $114,000.