The head of the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund, or IMRF, has dismissed calls for pension reform, disregarding the fact that pensions aren’t manageable, benefits aren’t affordable, and previous “reforms” propped up pensions on the backs of new workers.
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.
Pension funds aren’t immune to the volatility of the stock market. Even before Brexit, Moody’s warned that low investment returns are already putting Chicago’s pension funds at risk. A major stock market correction or another recession just might put Chicago and CPS over the edge if their already-underfunded pension systems collapse.
On May 30, the General Assembly voted to override Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to delay payments to Chicago’s police and fire pension funds – at a cost to Chicago taxpayers of an additional $18.6 billion over the next 40 years.