Illinois pension system

Clock Ticking on 2012 General Assembly
6:11 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Illinois House Adjourns Without Vote on Pension Plan

The Illinois Capitol Building

Over the protests of state employee unions, an Illinois House committee gave bipartisan support to a plan intended to repair Illinois' underfunded pensions.  But the full House adjourned Monday without taking a vote.

The legislation would leave workers paying more for a smaller retirement benefit.  House Republican leader Tom Cross said the change is necessary given the condition of Illinois' pension systems.

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Closing a Huge Gap
5:47 pm
Wed December 19, 2012

State Workers Propose Illinois Pension Plan

Credit Rich Egger

State employee unions say the leading proposals to fix Illinois' public employee pension systems are all fatally flawed, so they proposed their own plan.

Workers point out any attempt to plug the $96 billion funding shortfall must respect the state Constitution, which says benefits "shall not be diminished."

The proposals backed by Governor Pat Quinn and other political leaders attempt to get around that in order to cut retirement benefits. But AFSCME Legislative Director Joanna Webb-Gauvin said those ideas will ultimately fail in the courts.

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The Governor’s Plan
6:30 pm
Mon November 19, 2012

A Cartoon Snake and Illinois Pensions

Credit Capitol Fax

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has finally unveiled his Internet campaign that is supposed to spur legislators to overhaul the state’s retirement systems. 

Quinn is trying to use social media to educate voters about the "squeeze" pension costs are putting on other state spending, such as education.

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State Senate Candidate in Western Illinois
6:53 pm
Tue August 28, 2012

Frese Blames Pension Crisis on Leadership Gap

Randy Frese
Rich Egger
  • Randy Frese news conference and Q-and-A

Republican Illinois State Senate candidate Randy Frese of Paloma said the state's pension problems are a sign of broken government, which he said was caused by a lack of leadership.

Frese said the pension reform program in Rhode Island could serve as a template for Illinois. He said Rhode Island raised the retirement age, froze the cost of living adjustment (COLA), and implemented a 401K style plan. Frese said the state did so long before it got into a financial hole as deep as the one in Illinois.

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Playing Politics, Ignoring Reality
10:08 am
Tue August 21, 2012

Tax Expert: Pensions Are Not the Problem for Illinois

Rich Egger

Conservative estimates indicate Illinois is $83 billion short of what it has promised state workers in retirement benefits.  But Ralph Martire of the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability said said there is nothing inherently wrong with the state's pension plans.

He said the problem is that for 40 years the state “borrowed like a credit card” from pensions to pay for other services. But instead of acknowledging that, state leaders and lawmakers have played politics with the issue.

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