By: Mark Glennon*
A new study by the Center for State and Local Government Excellence looks at city unfunded pension liabilities under new governmental accounting standards. Some cities, unlike Chicago, participate in state-wide pension “cost-sharing” plans. The new standards require each city to include its shared liability in such plans, which increases their reported liability. This new study reflects those changes and measures unfunded liability as a percentage of each city’s revenue.
Despite those negative adjustments for other cities, Chicago is worst of 173 cities measured. Its unfunded pension liabilities are 359% of its revenues The 173-city average is 86%. Below, from the study, are the 20 worst of the 173 cities.
Another way to think of it would be that it would take all of Chicago’s revenue for 3.59 years to bring the pensions even.
*Mark Glennon is founder of WirePoints. Opinions expressed are his own.