Maryland’s State Retirement and Pension Systems has an unfunded liability of $17 billion. The entire State Retirement and Pension System of Maryland is worth roughly $32.5 billion. Therefore, the $17 billion shortfall, which some estimates put as high as $19 billion, effectively means that, if all state workers retired tomorrow, only half would receive pension checks.
Wade actively participated in a pension workgroup to develop strategies to resolve the long-range shortfalls of the state pension system. The workgroup proposed that, initially, the state legislature itself would move from a defined benefit program to a defined contribution program, much like 95% of the private sector. Unfortunately, the legislature refused to adopt this plan, instead opting to kick the can further down the road.