New hires bore most of the burden from state and local government pension cuts in the five years after the recession, but existing employees took hits in their wallets as well, a new study says.

Nearly one quarter of state and local government plans trimmed benefits for employees between 2009 and 1014, while 74 percent of state plans and 57 percent of large local plans cut retirement security programs for new employees, according to a study by the Center for State & Local Government Excellence released Thursday.

Reductions were the greatest for new hires, including increases in minimum age requirements and the years required on the government payroll to be eligible for benefits.

The two most common benefit reductions for workers were increases in payroll deductions for the plans and reductions to cost of living adjustments.

The cost of living increases were among the easiest retirement benefits to cutbecause they have less protection under state and local law, said the center.

The study was based on an analysis of 114 state retirement plans and 46 local plans.