At least four Albany legislators are collecting sweet pensions on top of their annual salaries, including one Assemblyman who sponsored legislation last year to crack down on state workers for the same practice, known as "double dipping." Seventy-five-year-old Assemblyman Harvey Weisenberg (D-Long Island) technically "retired" last year but continues to "work" at the state capital, where you're paying him $101,500 in salary plus a pension of about $72,000. Forget it Jake, it's Albany, where it's perfectly legal for veteran lawmakers to "retire" at 65 and start collecting pensions, but without actually leaving their jobs, giving up their salaries or even telling their constituents.
Asked by the Times about his own double dipping, Weisenberg replied, "I don’t see this as that. This is something I earned." And Senator George H. Winner Jr., a 59-year-old Elmira Republican who pulls in an $80,000 annual pension on top of his $89,000 salary (all on top of his private law practice), explains that he's "actually saving the taxpayers money" because if he truly retired he'd still be collecting a pension but the state would also be making pension contributions for his successor. Way to take one for the team, Winner!