State Finances on Unsustainable Path, Report Says

Tuesday, July 17, 2012
By Paul Martin

By MICHAEL CORKERY
WallStreetJournal.com
July 17, 2012

Rising pension and health-care costs are hampering states’ efforts to improve infrastructure and provide college education to lower-income students, according to a report released Tuesday by a new budget task force.

The gap between entitlement costs and state revenues available to pay for them have become unsustainable, said the report by the State Budget Crisis Task Force, which is co-chaired by Paul Volcker, a former Federal Reserve chairman, and Richard Ravitch, a one-time lieutenant governor of New York.

“Our goal was not to say that the apocalypse is around the corner,” Mr. Ravitch said at a news conference in Washington, D.C. “But that it will be a hell of a lot more expensive to deal with these problems five and 10 years from now than to deal with it now.”

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