A study finds government pension systems sank deeper into the red as the recession took its toll and states spent their scarce dollars elsewhere. The Pew Center on the States says 34 states failed to reach the commonly accepted level for pension funding in 2010, the latest year for which figures are available. Four states; Connecticut, Illinois, Kentucky and Rhode Island, didn't even have 55 percent of the money they'll need in the long run. The overall gap between assets and future pension costs ballooned to $757 billion. But the Pew Center says states are trying to address the problem by cutting benefits or increasing contributions for future employees. Some are trying to cut current workers, although that invites legal challenges.
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