Ill. pension problem put off for 5 more weeks | St. Louis Public Radio

Ill. pension problem put off for 5 more weeks

Jun 21, 2012

It looks like lawmakers won't reach an agreement on how to solve Illinois' grossly underfunded pension problem anytime soon.

Legislative leaders met Thursday to find a compromise on their sticking point of who should pay retirement costs for downstate and suburban school districts.

But talks delved into school funding equality. Leaders say they'll take five weeks to study that before discussing pensions.

Meanwhile the state's $85 billion in unfunded liability continues to grow.

House and Senate Republican leaders say making districts pay retirement costs is separate from overall reforms. They'd rather first pass a reform plan that appears to have wide support, but they're willing to discuss it and want a school funding study.

But Gov. Pat Quinn and House Speaker Michael Madigan want a comprehensive deal including schools.

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