No other state’s constitution or labor laws are like Illinois’ – broadly allowing government unions to override statutes simply by negotiating contrary provisions into collective bargaining agreements. Illinois may not be alone for long.View Report
Illinois state and local pension debt now tallies $218 billion with both debt to GDP and funding ratios the worst in the nation, according to a new Equable Institute report.
Illinois’ institutions of higher education will get $1.12 billion less from lawmakers to run next year than they did in 2009, adjusted for inflation. Pension costs have more than tripled in that time.
Illinois state lawmakers shorted pensions by $4.1 billion and killed scholarships for low-income students, but gave themselves pay raises and a new office building. Their budget leaves no room for error as revenue projections drop.
Before deciding who best can lead Chicago through its financial problems, it helps to understand what those problems are. Here’s a primer.
The typical career state worker collected $82,478 in annual pension benefits, recouping more income in 17 months of retirement than they contributed over 35 years. Working Illinoisans only earned $59,650 a year.
Just like Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel did late in his term, Mayor Lori Lightfoot is calling for public pension reforms. Pensions are damaging cities, she said.
The typical career state pensioner earns more in retirement than Illinoisans do working. Households now pay over three times more than they did nearly two decades ago to cover the costs.
Illinois’ five statewide pensions system saw their debt increase by nearly $10 billion to a grand total of $140 billion in fiscal year 2022. Pensions will cost the state nearly $11 billion next year, but that’s still $4.4 billion too little.
The Biden administration promised nearly $36 billion to stabilize pension plans for Teamsters nationwide after forecasts predicted the system’s default by 2026. Union members would have seen their retirement benefits slashed by 60% if the system defaulted.
A former CTA clerk was indicted on five counts of wire fraud for allegedly creating and approving 43 fraudulent benefit requests.