Although tax policy receives more media coverage, government spending is the most important factor to watch. Our nation was built on the concept of limited government, and government’s tendency is to grow unless it is constrained. One of the biggest challenges for most states is addressing employee pension liabilities.
Any changes to pensions should consider both the long-term solvency of a plan as well as protect the already promised benefits for employees already in the system. The benefits in a public employee retirement system should be sustainable, secure, and affordable.
Resources / Further Reading:
“A Briefing on Georgia’s Budget: The Big Picture,” Georgia State University
Adjustments for Cost of Living Differences among States from the U.S. Department of Commerce
Teachers’ Retirement System of Georgia, www.trsga.com
Employees’ Retirement System of Georgia, www.ers.ga.gov
“Pension Reform Handbook: A Starter Guide for Reformers,” Adrian Moore and Lance Christiansen, Reason Foundation, July 2014, http://reason.org/files/pension_reform_handbook.pdf
“Did Pension Reform Improve the Sustainability of Pension Plans? Evidence from a Counterfactual Analysis of Michigan and Alaska,” Anthony Randazzo and Truong Bui, Reason Foundation, 2016, http://reason.org/files/ps450_pension_reform_sustainability_effects.pdf
“The Widening Gap Update,” The Pew Center on the States, June 2012, www.pewstates.org/uploadedFiles/PCS_Assets/2012/Pew_Pensions_Update.pdf
“The Fiscal Health of State Pension Plans: Funding Gap Continues to Grow,” The Pew Center on the States, March 2014, http://www.pewstates.org/uploadedFiles/PCS/Content-Level_Pages/Fact_Sheets/Pew-States-Widening-Gap-Factsheet.pdf
“No One Benefits: How teacher pension systems are failing BOTH teachers and taxpayers,” National Council on Teacher Quality, www.nctq.org/p/publications/docs/nctq_pension_paper.pdf