My colleague Robert Novy-Marx over at our Simon School has a working paper released today:
The Revenue Demands of Public Employee Pension Promises
by Robert Novy-Marx, Joshua D. Rauh
We calculate increases in contributions required to achieve full
funding of state and local pension systems in the U.S. over 30 years.
Without policy changes, contributions would have to increase by 2.5
times, reaching 14.1% of the total own-revenue generated by state and
local governments. This represents a tax increase of $1,385 per
household per year, around half of which goes to pay down legacy
liabilities while half funds the cost of new promises. We examine
sensitivity to asset return assumptions, wage correlations, the
treatment of workers not currently in Social Security, and endogenous
geographical shifts in the tax base.