In Maryland, local leaders across the state received news from Gov. Martin O'Malley, that many were happy to hear. But the news comes with a word of caution from the governor.
The state is facing a budget shortfall of around $1.3 billion. One of the ways that was being looked at to close that deficit was to partially shift the burden of teacher pensions, currently covered completely by the state, to county governments.
Many local leaders are set against that, as they face large shortfalls as well, and having to pay teacher pensions would only make those worse. So O'Malley received a standing ovation at the meeting of the Maryland Association of Counties when he said this:
"The balanced budget that I will submit to the general assembly later this month will not propose to pass pension costs this year onto the counties."
But O'Malley stressed the words "this year" as a caution. He says in the future,sharing may be necessary. In addition, the president of the state senate and one of the most powerful lawmakers in Annapolis, Mike Miller, is a supporter of sharing pensions.