Arizona

Jun 24, 2012 3:04 PM

Pension funds in Ariz. facing bleak future

PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona taxpayers are about to start paying more to prop up four of Arizona's ailing public retirement plans.

The Arizona Republic reports that the increase payments begin next week as the plans continue to suffer such heavy market losses that their values are far below what they owe pensioners over the long term.

Administrators say that the pension system for Arizona's police officers and firefighters, for example, is in the worst shape and has little hope for a quick turnaround.

The bleak outlook comes as the Pew Center on the States, a national organization that seeks ways to make government more effective, last week released a study saying Arizona's state pension systems remain underfunded. Arizona is among 34 states facing that problem.

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