West Virginia reins in public retiree health benefit costs
West Virginia is already reaping benefits from recent efforts to rein in public retiree health benefit costs, officials say. A Wall Street credit rating agency appears ready to praise the state's handling of its last major liability.
By Lawrence Messina|February 27, 2012 at 06:43 AM
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia is already reaping benefits from recent efforts to rein in public retiree health benefit costs, officials say: They expect to shrink the projected funding shortfall further, by more than $1 billion, and a Wall Street credit rating agency appears ready to praise the state’s handling of its last major liability.
Just a few months ago, the Public Employees Insurance Agency estimated a $10 billion gap between on-hand assets and health insurance coverage promised to teachers and other public workers once they retire. It was one of the largest unfunded liabilities, per-capita, from these non-pension benefits among the states. Such costs are known as other post-employment benefits, or OPEB.
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