Illinois’ pension crisis has been a growing problem for decades, and its negative effects on state residents are well documented.1 Economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and related government shutdown orders threaten to bring that long-running crisis closer to its breaking point. The state’s five pension systems collectively held nearly $139 billion of debt at...View Report
Illinois job creation lagged the national median in nearly every sector.
More than 129,000 Illinois public pensioners will see expected payouts of $1 million or more during retirement.
Illinois suffered its sixth consecutive year of population decline in 2019, driven entirely by residents leaving for other states.
Illinois’ 101st General Assembly can be leaders in pension reform by passing a constitutional amendment that allows for changes to future, unearned benefits.
Illinois House members voted to override Gov. Rauner’s veto of a bill that would allow a former firefighter serving as a Chicago aldermen to credit his political salary toward a more lucrative fire pension. While just one alderman now qualifies, the bill could extend the perk to more in the future.
The Chicago firefighters pension fund has filed claims with the Illinois comptroller for $3.3 million in shorted pension contributions, an action that could worsen city finances and service delivery.
One former Schaumburg Park District employee alone has accumulated more than $1 million in pension benefits after retiring at age 55.
More than a dozen city and park district retirees in Highland Park have received more than $1 million in pension benefits each.
The average lifetime pension benefit among the county’s 20 highest-earning municipal retirees is more than $1.2 million, while their average total retirement contribution is less than $75,000.
Lake County residents pay some of the highest property taxes in the nation – a burden driven by the growth in pension costs over the last 20 years.