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
Springfield lawmakers passed a ceremonial resolution March 8 congratulating the Chicago Cubs on winning the 2016 World Series. But that pat on the back doesn’t make up for the adversarial relationship politicians have held with the Cubs and other professional sports franchises in Chicago.
Buried in the House rules lawmakers passed in January are a dozen new committees, bringing the total number of standing committees in the House to 45. Committee chairs receive a $10,326 stipend annually.
The speaker’s law firm makes millions in the clout-heavy game of Cook County property tax appeals.
Attempts to cut off state worker pay need not end in a tax hike.
No other state in the country grants as much power to its House speaker as Illinois does to Mike Madigan.
The Illinois House should change its legislative rules to diminish the control they give the House speaker over the legislative process, which far exceeds the power that other states grant their legislative leaders.
Chicago State University spent more than $200,000 lobbying Springfield politicians, while deteriorating finances caused it to lay off hundreds of employees, including professors.
The Senate on Inauguration Day took action to limit the power of its legislative leaders. Meanwhile, House Democrats re-elected Mike Madigan as House speaker, ensuring he will become the longest-tenured legislative leader in modern American history.
At the end of his term in 2019, Madigan will be the longest-serving House speaker of any state in modern U.S. history.
The newly re-elected House speaker is pushing a new tax on businesses, an increase to the minimum wage and more spending, while doing nothing to address salient problems such as workers’ compensation and pension debt.