All financial advisers say: Save for retirement and do not use that savings to spend on annual living expenses. Why didn’t the state do the same thing with state employees’ retirement (pension) contributions? If I recklessly spent my retirement savings before retirement, I’d be in a financial hole, too.
The state created this “crisis” themselves. It is not a matter of lack of contributions to the retirement system but reckless mismanagement and a total lack of fiduciary responsibility, by the state, of employee retirement funds contributed over the years.
Tweaking the retirement system now to make up for the state’s mismanagement will only perpetuate the problem and penalize innocent employees. The state needs to step up and do the right thing: act in a responsible, fiduciary manner with employees' hard-earned retirement funds.
To the state, I say: You created this “crisis,” so fix it yourself. Don’t put the blame and consequences on those who have innocently contributed and still are contributing, with good faith to the retirement system. To not do so would be a misuse of power.