Bill Gates Takes On Unions And Education

Bill Gates will step into the national debate over state budgets Thursday with a call for states to rethink their health care and pension systems, which he says stifle funding for public schools.

Mr. Gates said he will use a high-profile conference Thursday in Long Beach, Calif., to urge that more attention be paid to how states calculate their employee-pension funding and health-care obligations.

 “These budgets are way out of whack. They’ve used accounting gimmicks and lot things that are truly extreme.” Gates Said.

The comments come after Mr. Gates spent more than a year studying the issue and enlisting the advice of leading academics and others.

The talk will be at a meeting of leading thinkers called the TED conference.