An ill wind blows (sorry!) in today's Daily Breeze:
State and local governments across the nation will have to come up with a massive $558 billion over the next several decades to meet health and dental benefits for their employees and retirees, a report released Wednesday found.
That figure represents the total unfunded liabilities—money scheduled to be paid out that does not now have an identifiable revenue stream—held by all states, including $48 billion for California.
The Center for State and Local Government Excellence report also found many state and local governments have done little to deal with the escalating retiree health care costs.
"Though there may be urgency, the states have yet to develop long-term strategies for dealing with escalating retiree health care costs," the authors wrote. […]
Of 140 government agencies surveyed in California, the median average of unfunded liability was $26 million, according to the report. Of the agencies, 5 percent said they are likely or very likely to raise taxes and 15 percent said they are likely or very likely to cut city and county programs and use the savings to pay for retiree health care expenses.