DiNapoli Authorizes Significant Raises for NY Fund Investment Team

June 12, 2008 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - New York State Controller Thomas DiNapoli has authorized significant raises for nearly three dozen members of his state pension investment team, the Daily News reports.

Salary information from DiNapoli’s office shows 21 of the 35 raises were in the double digits, including 13 that exceeded 20%, according to the news report. T he authorized pay raises total more than $500,000.

The highest percentage increase was given to junior research analyst George Wong whose salary jumped from $38,159 to $62,500 – a 64% increase. The largest monetary increases go to Assistant Deputy Controllers Marjorie Tsang and William Barrett who were approved for salaries of $200,000 each – an increase of $47,655, or 31.3%.

“In order to get the kind of performance that you need to keep the fund solvent and well-funded, we need quality people,” DiNapoli spokesman Dennis Tompkins said in the news report. “It’s a very competitive market out there for investment professionals.”

He pointed out the investment-team salaries come out of the $154 billion pension fund and not from general tax revenues.

Tompkins added that many other states not only pay their pension investment staff more but also offer performance bonuses, and some of the functions New York employees perform, such as the management of hedge funds, are traditionally contracted out to more costly consultants in other states.