man with gold eggs Here is a look at the states with the best-funded ratios under the risk-free rate recommended by ALEC, and a comparison to Pew's numbers on funded ratios and assumed rates of return. (Photo: Getty)

How trustees of state-sponsored pension plans value the cost of future liabilities, and in turn determine funded ratios, is a touchy subject among retirement policy experts and lawmakers.

Pew Charitable Trusts' annual report on state pensions, released last April, showed $1.1 trillion in unfunded liabilities in 2015. The aggregate funding level for plans across the country was 72 percent.

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Nick Thornton

Nick Thornton is a financial writer covering retirement and health care issues for BenefitsPRO and ALM Media. He greatly enjoys learning from the vast minds in the legal, academic, advisory and money management communities when covering the retirement space. He's also written on international marketing trends, financial institution risk management, defense and energy issues, the restaurant industry in New York City, surfing, cigars, rum, travel, and fishing. When not writing, he's pushing into some land or water.