Fitch Lowers Illinois Credit Rating

All three major credit rating agencies have labeled Illinois’ financial outlook a “negative.”  Fitch issued its downgrade today. Fitch blames its action on lawmakers’ failure to pass a pension overhaul before adjourning Tuesday. The investor service surveys states’ finances, and judges their ability to pay back debt.Lower ratings could result in Illinois having to pay higher interest when it takes out credit for things like infrastructure projects, or other types of borrowing.

House Republican Leader Tom Cross says that’s money Illinois doesn’t have. He  calls the downgrade “embarrassing.”  Governor Pat Quinn’s assistant budget director issued a statement saying the Fitch report should be “required reading for every member of the new General Assembly.” Despite Quinn’s urging, legislators have been unable to agree on a way to cut the state’s pension costs. Unions are fighting attempts to cut retirement benefits state employees have earned and were promised, though they’ve offered to require workers pay more into their pensions. 

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One Response to Fitch Lowers Illinois Credit Rating

  1. George Atterberry says:

    It is far worse that retired state workers be made to suffer than the State incur a downgrade by the credit rating agencies. Retirees can not have a re-do of the terms of their retirement plans. They had one shot and that was it; it is essentially immoral that the State pull the rug out from under already retired workers. I would have worked longer if I had known they would take a third of my retirement away!!!
    It was hard enough that I had a horrible and dangerous job in the Department of Corrections but I did the job for 27 years knowing that early retirement was insight. What now will the impetus for staying at dangerous jobs such as Correctional work, or Police work, and Firefighter jobs? I say the State should pay what they owe even if that means the State of Illinois has to tighten down until after the next Pension payment, then that is what they should do. Don’t punish already retired State workers, especially in those dangerous jobs where they served.

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