Top 10 States in Deepest Debt
The worst-off are not who you might suspect
By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 30, 2011 10:55 AM CST
In this file photo, the seal of the State of Rhode Island is seen on the floor of the Statehouse rotunda In Providence.   (AP Photo/Susan E. Bouchard, File)

(Newser) – Forty-four states will likely come up short of their budgets in 2012, a development that has lawmakers considering a special bankruptcy provision for states. But which are deepest in the hole? The Daily Beast crunched the numbers, factoring in not just debt but unfunded pension and health care obligations. Here's the top 10:

  1. Rhode Island
  2. Connecticut
  3. Massachusetts
  4. Illinois
  5. Hawaii

  1. New Jersey
  2. New Hampshire
  3. Indiana
  4. Louisiana
  5. Oklahoma
Click for the rest.

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Showing 3 of 11 comments
Jan 31, 2011 12:56 PM CST
Just legalize marijuana and tax it you poor-ass states - you will soon be off the bottom of the list. What a bunch of dumb guys running these states - can't they get someone to run them who knows how to make money? Like someone rich, who has proved it? You get what you vote for
Jan 30, 2011 3:04 PM CST
Oklahoma a commie-pinko state? NOT- When JFK was assassinated in 1963 I first learned of it walking thru the OSU ad bldg when I spotted the Headline in Daily O'Collegiate My 1st reaction? I thot it really had to be a right wing religious nutcake conservative Okla. JOKE THATS how conservative Oklahoma is, as far away from democratic liberalism as you can get My grandpa' told me Oklahomans hated the Catholic Kennedys because as everyone knows in Okla "the Roman Catholic Church FED christians to the Lions" How you gonna' argue with that statement? It TRULY speaks for itself to the type of right wing religious nutcakes who live in Oklahoma- I left the state
Jan 30, 2011 2:39 PM CST
Hello? any intelligent life out there??? Ilinois changed the playing field for teachers. They chnage the law and here's what they came up with: Teachers that begin their careers this year and are new to the system will have to work until they're 67. In addition, they can only max out with a potential retirement of 105,000 dollars. Guess what? after making the change-they didn't do the math-they have to revisit this aw sunce they now relaize that new teachers are also making contributions to social security and the change in the private pension could impact social security. And, they forgot tht the cost of living would be higher in 30 plkus years. go figure! some teachers retirre with that amount today. So states should really consider this: if they change the rules and take away from those teachers already retired the state bond rating will het rock bottom. As a result, the state will pay more for all state improvement plans and other work on the infrastructure. So in trhe long run states would be better off not going bankrupt. And taking away money due the retired state worker in the USA would probably put us all on CNN and MSNBC as the world watches riots in America against the top 5% that have all the cards and money and make all thgeze changes without any regard for what's left of the middle class. I predict thagt if states do this we will have civil unrest and then our country is done..the second Rome.