The Albuquerque Journal recently profiled the various legislators that have proposed specific legislation relating to government pensions. Unfortunately, as this subsequent editorial explains, none of the plans, even if they were all passed, would actually solve the problem.
The editorial cites Utah as one state that has replaced a defined benefit plan with a defined contribution plan. This is exactly what needs to happen here in New Mexico, immediately. Even that step does not completely solve the problem as we need to raise the retirement age, reduce benefits, and up contributions for existing retirees.
None of this will be easy or popular, but New Mexico’s pension problem is 3rd-worst in the country. As Scott Moody has pointed out in his work on behalf of the Rio Grande Foundation, the pension problem is bigger than policymakers and the media realize, so aggressive steps are necessary.
So far, no one in the Legislature seems to be willing to address the issue.