As I recall, it was NJ Gov. Christine Todd Whitman whose administration started reducing the legally-required state contributions to the state employee pension fund and instead using it to balance the budget.
So of course there’s a pension shortfall — the Republicans stole the money to pay for tax cuts. I remember this well, because the new state controller was the same slimy accountant that was under federal investigation here in Delaware County. He was good friends with Crazy Curt Weldon.