Many states using pension funds for more urgent debt

Massachusetts was ranked 48th, with barely enough money to cover short term bills

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – If your financial future depends heavily on your pension, there is new research to suggest those benefits could be uncertain especially for retirees in the northeast.

We’ve done other stories about how the average person today might not have a ton of money set aside for later because they’ve used it to pay more urgent bills. It’s the same story for states.

The Mercatus Center at George Mason University looked at how well the 50 states managed planned spending in the last full fiscal year. Illinois came in dead last; state leaders used pension funds to cover more pressing bills and then when workers went to retire, legislators tried to cut them.

A judge ruled that unconstitutional, but there’s still no solution for the debt. Massachusetts was ranked 48th, with barely enough money to cover short term bills.

There need to be some changes made to make sure the promises pensioners are getting today are fulfilled. Whether that’s raising taxes a little bit or reducing future benefits for retirees,” said Matt Farkas of St. Germain Investment Management

Cushioned in between Massachusetts and dead-last Illinois is New Jersey, which didn’t make annual pension payments for more than 20 years, and now owes 5 billion dollars.

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