Opinion: as pension expenses went up $171 million last year, we must reduce deficit now - Vermont Business Magazine

Every year the cost of both pensions and pension debt gets worse. Why won’t Montpelier act?

“The state now pays over $200 million per year (and increasing each year) to fund just the pension plans ($2.3 billion in unfunded liability) and, meanwhile, chooses to not fund the annual required payments of around $80 million for the retiree health care benefit plans ($2.3 billion in unfunded liability). Our top pension priority should be protecting the benefits promised to current beneficiaries, and state employees and teachers. Keeping the existing program plans in place for new hires is necessarily a secondary goal, assuming the funding is available to do so…... but the funding certainly isn’t available now. The state needs an independent analysis of these plans that will test not only the state’s ability to pay for our liabilities under different market and economic situations, but to ensure that the participants will get the promised benefits. And, this test needs to be conducted on a regular basis.”



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