Drawing from the four state case studies (Utah, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Illinois), Patrick McGuinn at the Brookings Institution provides a number of important lessons and recommendations for policymakers to navigate the challenges of pension reform:
- States should make their complete annual actuarial payment
- Need a credible and visible reform champion
- Gather and disseminate the hard data
- Communicate and educate
- Build a diverse coalition and a statewide advocacy campaign
- Avoid turning pension reform into an ideological issue
- Demonstrate pensions’ impact on taxes and other state spending priorities
- Sell the benefits of pension reform to state workers and school reformers
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