The mayor’s Chicago budget plan includes a $76.5 million property tax hike despite $3.5 billion in federal aid and funds permanent programs with temporary revenues but includes no push to fix pensions.View Report
Bills backed by Illinois public-sector unions would give them more power in administering pension funds despite evidence of worse outcomes.
Rapidly rising property taxes and growing pension costs leave homeowners asked to pay more to get less. Relief requires structural pension reform, starting with a constitutional amendment.
Quincy property taxes do not generate enough to fund the municipal pension costs. Even with that heavy burden, there is so much state and local pension debt that the average Quincy household owns more than $35,600.
Rapidly rising pension costs compete with classroom spending, reducing resources for teachers and students while driving up property taxes.
Despite so much of the property tax share going to public pensions, there is still a huge unmet pension debt. The average Rock Island household owes nearly $40,000 to state and local pensions.
The average Danville household owns nearly $40,000 in state and local pension debt.
Public pensions are growing and taking a greater share of property taxes, hurting public services. Still, the average Rockford household owes over $35,000 in state and local pension debt.
The average Peoria household owns nearly $38,000 in state and local pension debt.
House Bill 417 falls far short of the structural reforms Illinois pension systems require. A constitutional amendment is needed after courts blocked a real reform effort in 2018.
Pension obligation bonds, like payday loans, are a sign of mismanaged finances. Illinois not only leads the nation for using that risky debt, it owes the bulk of it.