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Unfunded Debt For California Teacher Pensions Up $11 Billion

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – California’s unfunded debt for teacher pensions has grown by nearly $11 billion after officials lowered its outlook for investment earnings. The California State Teachers Retirement System reported Thursday that it is facing a $107 billion gap between the cost of pensions promised to teachers and the money currently set aside to pay for them. As of June 30, 2017, the pension system was 62.6 percent funded, down from 63.7 percent a year earlier. It had $209 billion in assets. CalSTRS officials say the increase in the unfunded obligation is due primarily to a decision last year to lower the assumed investment return by half a percent to 7 percent per year. Assuming smaller earnings from investments means teachers, school districts and the state will have to make up the difference.