Workers’ compensation is a significant cost to Illinois taxpayers and drains scarce tax dollars from government coffers. A previous report in this series estimated the direct cost of workers’ compensation to state, county and municipal governments is $402 million in worker payouts per year.1 Building upon those findings, this report estimates that the total cost of workers’ compensation to...View Report
Nearly 38 percent of Illinois Teachers Retirement System assets are in so-called alternative investments.
Illinois crafted the solution to its pension crisis nearly 20 years ago. The problem is many lawmakers don’t even know that solution exists. Since 1998, more than 20,000 state university workers have opted into a 401(k)-style plan instead of the traditional pension plan. Illinois’ lawmakers can begin to solve the pension crisis by simply expanding the State Universities Retirement System’s 401(k)-style plan to all state workers.
In 2010, the unfunded debt related to pensions and retiree health care costs for local and state government workers across Illinois was $203 billion, the equivalent of more than $43,000 per household. In just six years, the total debt Illinois households are on the hook for has jumped to $56,000, or 31 percent. That’s a $13,000 increase for each household. Total unfunded debt for state and local governments in Illinois now totals $267 billion.
More than 50 percent of the state’s $4.1 billion budget for public universities is spent on retirement costs alone.
Illinois households are now on the hook for $27,000, up 17 percent from 2015.
Illinois’ public colleges and universities used to be affordable, but schools have increased tuition from 74-112 percent over the last decade to help pay for administrative hiring sprees and skyrocketing pensions.
Here's what you need to know about Illinois' $111 billion state pension crisis.
The outsized benefits received by retired government workers under the State Universities Retirement System and the unfair burden this places on taxpayers demonstrate the urgent need to reform Illinois’ government-worker pensions.
More than 12,000 state retirees receive annual pensions of over $100,000 for lifetime payouts that average $3 million.
Even if Illinois pension funds see investment returns that exceed expectations, that still won’t be enough to plug the largest fund’s hole. The Teachers’ Retirement System reported its pension underfunding grew to $55.73 billion as of June 30, 2013 — an increase of more than $3.5 billion since the end of the previous fiscal year...