When an employer offers health care, there are difficulties. Health care costs have increased much faster than inflation, and there is no way that most employers can offer the same level of benefits without increasing their costs. Unless times are very good, the increase in cost has to be passed to the employee.
Pensions are a different matter. One of the considerations in accepting a job can be the pension. To tell an employee that his years of service is not going to give him the pension that was part of his employment package, is breaking a promise. The federal government, in both the military and civilian branches, got around this problem honestly. They decreed that all new people would be under a different system. So far, they’ve kept their pledges to those in the old system.
Wisconsin is trying to break their promises, and should follow the model of the federal government. All new workers would be under the new system. I believe in today’s economy, they would have no problems finding new workers. It wouldn’t solve the immediate problem, but rescinding the recent tax cuts might do that.