OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Motivated by a budget shortfall and one of the most underfunded public pension systems in the country, Oklahoma lawmakers took major steps last year to shore up the unfunded liability of the state's major pensions by increasing the retirement age for new hires and changing how the state provides cost of living adjustments for retirees.

The changes were immediate and dramatic.

Once the series of bills were signed into law, the unfunded liability of the state's major pension systems dropped by more than $5.5 billion. The state's largest and most poorly underfunded system, the Oklahoma Teachers Retirement System, which was projected to never reach fully funded status, was put on a path to be 100-percent funded in 22 years.

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