Oklahoma House of Representatives

Debts Down, Assets Up, Pension Committee Chairman Says

  • Joe Wertz

Oklahoma House of Representatives

State Rep. Randy McDaniel, R-Oklahoma City, said the state the debts of state pensions are decreasing while its assets are growing.

Oklahoma’s pension debt has been reduced by $5.5 billion thanks to new measures signed into law this year, a state lawmaker said Thursday.

The unfunded liability of all state pension plans has fallen to $10.6 billion from more than $16 billion in less than a year, said Rep. Randy McDaniel, according to The Oklahoman.

“The reforms are making a meaningful difference,” said McDaniel, R-Oklahoma City. “At a time when nations in Europe, as well as other states in our country, struggle to even address their structural debt problems, Oklahoma’s financial condition is already exhibiting remarkable improvement.”

McDaniel, chairman of the House Pension Oversight Committee, worked on the pension legislation that was passed this year.

Measures signed into law this year included a mandate of full funding of cost-of-living adjustment increases, increased retirement age for judges, teachers, elected officials and public employees, The Oklahoman’s Michael McNutt reported.

McDaniel said the state’s major pension plans increased more than $3.5 billion in the past year and now have $21.5 billion in assets, according to The Oklahoman.

The combination of a reduced unfunded liability and asset growth has improved the integrated ratio of Oklahoma state pensions from 56 percent to 67 percent, McDaniel said.