Amendment 1 would allow government unions to nullify hundreds of Illinois statutes – including laws aimed at protecting school children – simply by contradicting them in union contracts.View Report
Gov. J.B Pritzker has touted his record on higher education funding, even hinting many students should be given free tuition, but pensions are driving up tuition and eating state university funding. Pritzker refuses to tame that beast.
Illinois spends 27% less on higher education than it did in 2007. University pension spending grew by 510% in that time. It doesn’t take a math major to see why tuition has increased 49%.
More than 129,000 Illinois public pensioners will see expected payouts of $1 million or more during retirement.
Across all five state retirement systems, typical career workers pay for about 5% of the cost of their pension benefits. They receive an average of $1.7 million to $3.6 million.
A plan that allowed some pension enrollees to cash in early on their earned retirement benefits in exchange for curbing future benefits has so far generated only 3% of its expected savings.
According to recent data, Illinois spends nearly double the national average on pensions, measured as a percentage of all state and local government spending.
A former Edwardsville university administrator and a retired judge each have collected more than $3 million in pension payments. Too little paid in with too much taken out is the heart of Illinois’ pension crisis.
The average six-figure retiree contributed just over $160,000 toward their own pension over the course of their career.
Six years into retirement, Ron Guenther’s annual pension is more than $470,000 and is set to rise even higher, thanks to 3 percent yearly increases.
Illinois universities are blaming the recent budget impasse for their declining enrollment and financial problems. But the problems in higher education started long before the budget fight, and are largely self-inflicted.