SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A proposal to shore up the long-term finances of a pension system for state and local government workers in New Mexico cleared the Legislature on Wednesday and heads to Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

The measure addresses one of the largest financial problems confronting state government. The governor plans to review the bill before deciding whether to sign or veto it, according to a spokesman.

If the proposed changes to the Public Employees Retirement Association are implemented, the pension program is projected to rebuild its finances and within three decades have 90 percent of the assets necessary to cover benefits for retirees in the future.

Currently, the projected cost of future retirement benefits is $6 billion greater than the pension fund's assets.

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