Review of Financial Health of 50 States

Commentary

Review of Financial Health of 50 States

Truth in Accounting (TIA) last month released a comprehensive review of the financial reports of 50 states, revealing that states have accumulated unfunded pension and OPEB liabilities of nearly $1.2 trillion. However, only $229 billion of these liabilities are reported on state balance sheets due to outdated accounting standards.

The review also ranks each state by taxpayer burden, the amount each taxpayer would have to pay to rid the state of all debt. According to this standard, the top five states with the highest taxpayer burden are New Jersey, Connecticut, Illinois, Kentucky, and Massachusetts. The top five states with the highest taxpayer “surplus” are Alaska, North Dakota, Wyoming, Utah, and South Dakota,

To read the full review, go here.

Truong Bui is a policy analyst at Reason Foundation, where he works on the Pension Integrity Project.