- Associated Press - Sunday, April 20, 2014

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - The Legislature has approved a new approach to addressing the state’s unfunded pension obligation.

The House unanimously agreed to a Senate plan Sunday that would put $2 billion from savings toward the teachers’ retirement system and $1 billion toward the public employees’ retirement system. The plan calls for payments that are somewhat back-loaded, starting lower, at about $345 million in 2016, and slowly building until 2038. Projections call for a final $490 million payment the following year.

The idea was to improve the health of the pension systems while also lowering payment costs in the years ahead considering budget obligations and revenue concerns.

Gov. Sean Parnell proposed a different approach but praised the Senate plan.

A separate vote authorizing the transfer of money from the constitutional budget reserve was needed.

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