Senator Bowling lauds success of Tennessee’s top-rated pension fund

By | January 4, 2019 8:07 am

Last Updated: January 4, 2019 at 8:08 am

State Senator Janice Bowling

State Senator Janice Bowling (R-Tullahoma), on Jan. 3, lauded the success of Tennessee’s employee pension plan which has been rated among the five best-funded state plans in the U.S. Bowling represents Van Buren, Coffee, Franklin, Grundy, Marion, Sequatchie, and Warren counties.

A recent Pew Charitable Trust study showed the Volunteer State with a pension-funded ratio of 94 percent, well above the national average of 66 percent.

According to Pew, underfunded public pension systems have become a significant fiscal challenge facing states and municipalities with some failing to set aside enough money to fund the pension promises made to public employees.  The Tennessee General Assembly has appropriated money each year to fully fund employer contributions, earning the state the highest marks for financial management.

“We take our responsibility to our public employees and teachers very seriously to ensure pensions are funded and promises are kept,” said Sen. Bowling.   “It is also a very important factor keeping Tennessee’s AAA bond rating among the best in the nation.”

Tennessee holds the highest bond ratings issued by all three major credit rating agencies.  The state’s triple-A status reflects the extremely strong confidence the rating agencies have in Tennessee’s capacity to meet its financial commitments.

“Tennessee has one of the lowest debt burdens in the country and we are committed to living within our means,” Bowling added.  “Our triple-A status is an extraordinary achievement that benefits all Tennesseans.”

The General Assembly is scheduled to convene in Nashville for the 2019 legislative session on Tuesday.

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