Rhode Island Plan Enacts New Approach to States' Pension Woes

Rhode Island Plan Enacts New Approach to States' Pension Woes

Faced with rising pension costs, Rhode Island passed a set of reforms to its public sector retirement system that go further than what any other state has done. The bill is unprecedented, both in terms of the employees it will affect and the scope and scale of changes to their benefits.

Advocates of the reforms claimed they are needed to curb expanding costs that, left unaddressed, could have had severe impacts on state finances and taxpayers. Opponents, including unions, claimed the measures went too far and put workers’ retirement security at risk.

The front facade of the Supreme Court of the United States in Washington, DC.
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Agenda for America

A collection of resources to help federal, state, and local decision-makers set an achievable agenda for all Americans

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for emerging challenges, it makes government more effective and better able to serve the public interest. In the coming months, President Joe Biden and the 117th Congress will tackle a number of environmental, health, public safety, and fiscal and economic issues—nearly all of them complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. To help solve specific, systemic problems in a nonpartisan fashion, Pew has compiled a series of briefings and recommendations based on our research, technical assistance, and advocacy work across America.

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States of Innovation

Data-driven state policy innovations across America

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for difficult challenges. When states serve their traditional role as laboratories of innovation, they increase the American people’s confidence that the government they choose—no matter the size—can be effective, responsive, and in the public interest.