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New York state creates voluntary retirement savings program

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York state became the latest state to officially endorse a voluntary retirement savings program for private-sector workers with the passage of the state budget over the weekend.

The New York State Secure Choice Savings Program is contained in the state's $168.3 billion fiscal year 2019 budget, which was passed by state legislators early Saturday, said Morris Peters, a spokesman for Gov. Andrew Cuomo's budget division, in an email on Monday.

The governor announced the program the day before the budget bill was passed. "We had the first voluntary retirement savings program in the state. It's for private-sector employees who don't have a retirement savings plan," said Mr. Cuomo in Albany announcing aspects of the budget. "We're creating one and it would have the scale and capacity of a statewide effort."

The program is designed for New Yorkers who currently don't have access to an employer-provided retirement plan. Employers will not be responsible for creating and sponsoring their own retirement plans. Participation is voluntary for businesses and employees.

States such as Oregon, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland and Vermont have started or are about to start similar statewide programs.

New York state's fiscal year begins April 1.