Pension costs for state government workers reached an all-time high in 2016, consuming 25 percent of the state’s general budget.1 Today, more than $8 billion of the state’s yearly $32 billion budget goes to pay for pension costs, sapping tremendous amounts of money from social services for the developmentally disabled, grants for low-income college students, and aid to home...View Report
Gov. Bruce Rauner has suggested funding CPS with tax increment financing, or TIF, funds; this would temporarily bail out the district, but more needs to be done to address serious concerns about Chicago’s TIF program.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel is spending money promised for rebates on police body cameras, a legal defense fund for undocumented immigrants and other programs.
Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed the $215 million bailout of Chicago Public Schools’ ailing teachers’ pension fund.
Standard & Poor’s sent Chicago Public Schools’ credit rating deeper into junk territory in the wake of the new $9.5 billion teachers’ contract. The ratings firm said the new contract will make the district’s financial crisis worse.
A career teacher can expect to collect $2 million in benefits during his or her retirement.
Another credit downgrade shows borrowing, taxes and bailouts can’t fix CPS’ financial crisis, but real structural reforms are needed.
Many educators are wary of a strike’s hardships and long-term consequences for students, their families and the educators themselves. These teachers can remove themselves from CTU authority and the conflict between union priorities and students’ needs.
Resigning from the union before the potential upcoming strike can protect teachers from union discipline.
Chicago Public Schools officials had an opportunity to enact serious reforms addressing the district’s dire financial condition, but they instead opted to further burden Chicago taxpayers without offering any change.
A clean stopgap budget – without a bailout for CPS – will help the 2 million Illinois children and families waiting to hear whether school will start on schedule in the fall. And until CPS passes necessary spending and pension reforms, giving any additional money to the system will only reward officials’ mismanagement and reckless behavior.