Glasgall Delivers Keynote Address on FY2017 State Budget Challenges
July 8, 2016 – William Glasgall, director of the Volcker Alliance’s State and Local Program, delivered a keynote address today at the NJ Spotlight Roundtable on “Solving New Jersey’s Public-Pension Crisis” in Trenton, NJ. The event drew about 100 current and former state employees, public employee union and business leaders, advocates, legislators, and concerned New Jersey citizens. With 46 states beginning their fiscal years on July 1, Mr. Glasgall spoke about their common challenges, including meeting long-term commitments for public employee pensions and health care, education, transportation, and other areas.
The event also featured two panel discussions. Mr. Glasgall joined a panel on “Pensions and Possible Solutions” moderated by John Reitmeyer, public finance writer for NJ Spotlight. The discussion featured Tom Byrne, Chairman of the State Investment Council, along with senior officials from the Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey, the New Jersey Education Association, and the Communications Workers of America. The group discussed the crisis facing New Jersey’s public-employee pension system: a debt burden of $44 billion, brought about by years of underfunding. As the Volcker Alliance highlighted in its report Truth and Integrity in State Budgeting: Lessons from Three States, New Jersey’s unfunded pension and other retirement liabilities weigh heavily on the state’s spending decisions.
A second panel, also moderated by Mr. Reitmeyer, addressed the rising costs of retiree healthcare and possible ways to lower costs by boosting efficiencies.