Author and syndicated columnist Dr. Glenn Mollette recently opined on the state of the U.S. pension system where he accurately described the country’s mounting pension funding struggles. Without adequate pension fund returns, the instability of our pension system forces our nation’s retirees back into the workforce. Dr. Mollette described the aging workforce in entry-level positions to get a paycheck in order to make due. This sad reality for some seniors becomes commonplace when pension funds are not adequately funded. It is important to understand that these funds only receive payments through two avenues: First, a fund can produce high returns from holdings, or second, the taxpayers can fund the plans.
Dr. Mollette correctly assessed, “Saving American’s pensions will take an all-out effort,” as a large portion of these funds receiving less funding each year. It is important to end the kick the can down the road approach to pension funding because eventually the large shortcomings will mean large tax hikes in the respective state. Yet, this idea of increasing income taxes to support the pension funds is not a feasible solution. As Dr. Mollette noted in his column, “More taxes are not the answer.” A large part of the taxpayer population in states with large pension liabilities are the state pensioners.
“One thing about your government pension in this modern era is – you probably can count on it – just probably not all of it,” writes Dr. Mollette in the conclusion of his article. It is important that our nation’s leaders begin to protect our pension plans – all of it.