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O’Malley: Pension costs shouldn’t be put off

ANNAPOLIS — Gov. Martin O’Malley says tackling Maryland’s ballooning pension liabilities problem should be “front and center” in this upcoming legislative session.

O’Malley said Tuesday that taking on the difficult pension issue, as well as transportation funding concerns, should be top priorities in the session, which begins in January.

O’Malley told reporters he favors taking a comprehensive approach. He says he believes it would be a mistake to try to address teacher pensions apart from the overall challenge of determining a sustainable pension system.

State Retirement and Pension System officials made some legislative suggestions to lawmakers Tuesday on how to phase in payment of pension liabilities.