States Come to Grips With Pricey Pension Promises

Publication: USA Today

Author: Veronica Salazar

06/15/2010 - One of the most troubling social trends in recent years has been the pension gap between state and local employees (who can retire early—often very early—with instant, guaranteed, taxpayer-paid benefits) and the private sector workers whose taxes pay for those pensions. Their retirement benefits are largely self-financed and subject to market upheavals.


According to the Pew Center on the States, state pensions and other retiree benefit programs are underfunded by $1 trillion. And that estimate was madebefore the stock market swoon of 2008.

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