The passage of Tier 6 had everything to do with political ambition and an ideological agenda of protecting the rich; it had nothing to do with solving New York State’s immediate budget shortfall. It was a vote against the interests of whole generations of working people and the communities that rely on their income.
Tier 6 will hit CUNY especially hard; it’s disastrous for part timers, and will make it harder for CUNY to attract the best full-time faculty and staff in national searches. I remember being told more than twenty years ago when I came to CUNY that one thing CUNY was able to offer was good benefits, including a decent pension. As of last night [3/15/12], that is no longer true. At a university that has been systematically starved of funds, conditions for teaching and learning are hard. Decent benefits for those of us who work here assume special importance. I am afraid that the cowardly passage of a reduced pension tier, unless we are able to amend it, will hurt CUNY’s ability to rebuild the full-time faculty, a project that was just gaining momentum.