Panel Advances Pension Measure; Madigan Decries Current System as “Too Rich”
It’s on to the House and Senate for the pension proposal, which aims to save $160 billion over 30 years and shore up Illinois’ underfunded public pension systems.
While a conference committee working on the problem already signed its report Monday, it did take testimony this morning from those for and against.
“You’re harming individuals who have educated children, worked long hours, paid for materials out of their pocket, and often fed and clothed children out of their pockets,” said Bev Johns, a retiree who accused lawmakers of “hating” teachers.
One exchange centered on whether benefits really could be cut in half for some. State Sen. Daniel Biss (D-Evanston) said he could not reach that finding anywhere; Illinois Federation of Teachers president Dan Montgomery said he and Biss could agree they could be cut at least 20 percent.
The rhetoric continued, as union coalition lawyer John Stevens called the legislation’s funding guarantee “eyewash.”
The governor and the four legislative leaders urge the bill’s passage today.
House Speaker Michael Madigan House Speaker told the committee that the state’s pension systems are “just too rich” to be afforded in the future.