Any growth in state education spending over the past five years is being eaten up by greater teacher retiree system costs, according to a new report from the Citizens Research Council of Michigan.

Since 2012, school districts have had to return per-pupil funds to the state to cover unfunded liabilities in the Michigan Public School Employee Retirement System (MPSERS). According to current projections, those liabilities won’t be paid off until 2038.

According to the Citizens Research Council, that required contribution has eaten up the modest 12% increase in state per-pupil spending since 2013. And that’s reflected in average teacher pay, which has been stagnant at around $62,000 a year since 2008.

“You can use that [state] money to pay the liabilities, or to pay for

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