Frustrated Legislators Prepare New Pension Plan

Rank-and-file legislators frustrated with a lack of movement on a pension overhaul will introduce their own plan in a few hours. A dozen House members are named as supporters — mostly Democrats, but also two suburban Republicans.

Key authors of the new proposal won’t say what their version includes. They’re waiting to formally introduce it this morning.  But according to a fact sheet obtained by public radio, it’s different than previous attempts in several ways.

One major change: it requires the state and other government employers to pay into retirees’ pension funds  – or else be brought to court.  Illinois’ bad habit of not paying the states’ share is blamed for saddling it with an unfunded pension liability nearing $97 billion.

The new framework would require employees to work longer before they can get retirement benefits.  But only younger employees; those 46 and older (and thus closer to retiring) could retire at the ages set up in their current plans.

Workers would get cost-of-living increases on their pensions, but with limitations. They’d also have to pay more into their pensions. And it sets up a 401k-style plan.

But it may be dead on arrival. The plan proposes shifting, over 30 years, teachers’ and university employees’ retirement costs onto the schools, a cost now picked up by the state. Republican leaders have been clear they won’t go along with that because they say it’ll hike local property taxes.

-Amanda Vinicky

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2 Responses to Frustrated Legislators Prepare New Pension Plan

  1. Sue says:

    If local districts are forced to pick up the pension increases, it will be almost assured that Local Propery Taxes will Rise! So, the schools will begin to cut teachers to help pay for the burden the state is placing on them and will raise taxes for the local communities! Not a good plan!

  2. Pingback: More Information on Pensions Bill (HB6258) | Campus Faculty Association

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