Hawaii's Retirement System — A Danger Demanding Sunshine

Employees' Retirement System

Would it surprise you to learn, that during the new millennium's first decade, Hawaii's lawmakers borrowed almost $9 billion from government workers in the taxpayers' name?

That's exactly what I discovered in the 85th Annual Actuarial Valuation Report (as of June 30, 2010) to the board of Hawaii's Public Employees' Retirement System (HERS).  With little public notice, the actuary’s estimate of how much taxpayers owe government employees for their service and contributions to date went from nothing in 2000, to almost two rail system's worth of future taxes in 2010. And the amount is only that little, if the HERS board earns 8 percent on the assets it holds.  Otherwise, taxpayers owe much more.

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