Image via WikipediaThe Massachusetts public pension system is unsustainable and it's time to fix it.
We rely on a publicly invested contributory pension fund to pay retiree benefits. The current fund balance is about $44 billion. By current estimates, that's about $22 billion short of what is needed to meet our future payment obligations.
Ever-increasing annual infusions of taxpayer money are needed to make up the difference. This year's taxpayer share is about $1.4 billion — money we could spend on other priorities, like education and public safety. This is unsustainable. It's also unfair to jeopardize payments to the hardworking civil servants who are beneficiaries of the current system.
We need a new approach for the next generation of our state's workforce, and this can be accomplished in three crucial steps.