The country's public pension system is grossly underfunded and needs an overhaul, Rep. Devin Nunes said this week... [He] s promoting legislation designed to gauge the extent of the problem, while also establishing a ban on federal bailouts of public pension programs.
How bad is the underfunding problem?
Nationwide, the country's pension programs for public employees had roughly $1.9 trillion set aside in 2008 to pay promised retirement benefits, according to Nunes...
...Yet those same programs have liabilities totaling $5.2 trillion — a gap of more than $3.2 trillion.
Introduced earlier this month, Nunes' Public Pension Transparency Act would force state and local pension programs to report their liabilities to the federal government using a uniform accounting standard. It would also create a federal ban on any future public pension bailouts by Washington.
The bill has picked up the support of several leading Republicans, including Reps. Paul Ryan (Wis.) and Darrell Issa (Calif.).
Last week The Washington Examiner's Mark Hemingway also hit the alarm, describing the fatal default of Pritchard, Alabama on its pension obligations. Hemingway's question is a troubling one: "If the busted public pensions in small-town Alabama make for a particularly tragic tale, what kind of misery is going to unfold when some of the largest towns and states in the country run out of money?"
The public sector pension crisis is here. The nefarious alliance of corrupt Democrat politicians and their public sector union bosses have left pensioners and taxpayers high and dry. Rep. Nunes' efforts are a brave and utterly necessary start at addressing this impending catastrophe.
Linked by: Michelle Malkin and Memeorandum. Thanks!