Illinois pensions

Politics
12:35 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Deal Reached To Solve $100 Billion Illinois Pension Crisis

The Illinois Capitol building in Springfield, Ill.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Will be updated.

A spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan says legislative leaders have reached a deal to solve the state's $100 billion pension crisis.

Steve Brown says he was told of the agreement following a leaders meeting Wednesday.

Brown says the speaker's staff is putting together an "explanatory memo" for lawmakers and will send details of the proposed legislation to them Friday.

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Lawmaker Salaries
3:42 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Ill. Legislative Leaders Sue Over Halted Lawmaker Paychecks

The Illinois Capitol building in Springfield, Ill. (via Flickr/jglazer75)
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

The leaders of the Illinois House and Senate are filing a lawsuit challenging Gov. Pat Quinn's halting lawmaker pay over the state's pension gridlock. 

House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton called Quinn's action  "purely political and unconstitutional." All three men are Democrats.

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Politics
4:38 pm
Mon July 15, 2013

Governor Quinn Visits Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge

Ill. Governor Pat Quinn visits the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge in East St. Louis July 15, 2013. The bridge is scheduled to open March 2014.
(Kristi Luther/St. Louis Public Radio)

On Monday, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn paid a visit to the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge in East St. Louis.

Quinn said the bridge will reduce congestion and pollution and praised the jobs the project has created. He also hopes the project nurtures a positive relationship between Missouri and Illinois.

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Politics
11:04 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Ill. Gov. Quinn To Suspend Lawmakers' Pay Over Pension Crisis

Ill. Gov. Pat Quinn.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Updated 11:55 a.m. with reporting by Illinois Public Radio's Brian Mackey.

Governor Pat Quinn Wednesday used his veto power to eliminate salaries for Illinois legislators. Quinn says until lawmakers fix the state's pension problem, they shouldn't get paid.

On Illinois' $100 billion unfunded pension liability Quinn has been setting deadlines for more than a year.

Until now, there haven't been any direct consequences for lawmakers when they've blown each of those deadlines.

Quinn changed that today in a big way.

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Politics
12:37 pm
Sun July 7, 2013

Quinn Rejects Pension Panel's Invite

Credit (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Ill. Gov. Pat Quinn says he won't testify before a bipartisan pension panel Monday in Springfield.

The Chicago Democrat told reporters Sunday that staff from his budget office would attend. 

The committee tasked with finding a solution to the nearly $100 billion problem had invited Quinn to testify. 

The group was formed last month since lawmakers remained at odds over two reform plans. The committee held two public hearings in Chicago.  

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Illinois Pensions
4:34 am
Fri June 7, 2013

Ill. Assembly Called Back To Work On Pension Fund Shortfall

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with pension problems for Illinois.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: The credit rating for the state of Illinois has taken another step closer to junk bond status. Illinois already had the lowest credit rating in the nation before it was downgraded again this week by Moody's and Fitch. The state legislature adjourned last week without addressing a $100 billion pension shortfall.

So as NPR's David Schaper reports, the governor is calling lawmakers back.

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Ill. Pension Funding
6:41 am
Mon May 13, 2013

Report: Quarter Of Ill. Spending To Go To Pensions

Credit Flickr/Jason Dunnivant

A new report shows nearly a quarter of Illinois' state spending plan for next year will go toward pension payments. The Illinois State House and the State Senate have so far disagreed on the best way to address the worst-funded pension system in the country.

Laurence Msall is with the Civic Federation - a budget watchdog group. He says the state used to spend about 7 percent of its budget on retirement benefits. Now it's closer to 25 percent.

"It effectively means that all new revenue, in order to keep up with that growth, has to go into the pension system," Msall said.

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Illinois Pensions
4:58 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Illinois House Approves Comprehensive Pension Reform Plan After Years Of Talks

The Illinois State Capitol.
(via Flickr/jglazer75)

Updated 5:39 p.m. with reporting from Brian Mackey.

The Illinois House approved a massive overhaul of state-employee pension systems on Thursday. It's a development that's been more than a year in the making.

Earlier this year, there was a pension measure that had just a single "yes" vote. That makes what happened with this latest proposal significant.

Today's measure received 62 "yes" votes, 51 "no" votes and two voting present. Having received the constitutional majority, it passed.

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Illinois Unpaid Bills
9:51 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Income Taxes To Cover Millions In Interest For Unpaid Bills In Illinois

Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka.
via Illinois Comptroller website

Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says the ever-long list of vendors waiting on payments from the state means taxpayers have to pay interest and their money is being "flushed away."

That's according to a story posted online Sunday in the Rockford Register Star. The story is part of GateHouse newspapers' series on Illinois' backlog of unpaid bills.

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Illinois Pensions
9:25 am
Thu March 21, 2013

Ill. Senate Passes Pension Overhaul For Some Teachers

Credit (Flickr/ Jason Dunnivant

The Illinois Senate has passed a pension overhaul, but it only affects suburban and downstate teachers. It doesn't touch state employees' and university workers' retirement benefits.

The measure was approved by the Illinois Senate and forces teachers to choose between taking a reduced pension, or retaining access to state-backed health care upon retirement.

It took two tries, passing only after Democratic Senator Dave Koehler of Peoria switched his vote.

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