pension en Pension Overhaul Signed Into Law <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>A major overhaul of Illinois' pensions is now law. Gov. Pat Quinn held a private bill-signing ceremony this afternoon in Chicago. A court challenge seeking to stop it from taking effect is certain.</p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The new law will cut state workers' and public school teachers' retirement benefits.</span></p> Fri, 06 Dec 2013 01:12:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 14421 at Pension Overhaul Signed Into Law CapitolView: Pension Reform Analysis <p>WUIS&nbsp;State Week host, Bill Wheelhouse, guests on the latest CapitolView regarding the pension reform passed in Illinois.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="390" src="//" width="640"></iframe></p> Thu, 05 Dec 2013 17:59:59 +0000 Bill Wheelhouse 14620 at How Today's Pension Vote Will Go, Procedure-Wise <p></p><p>This morning, legislators on a special, bipartisan panel formed to reach a compromise on Illinois' pension situation will once again meet in Springfield. Already, most of the committee's members have signed off on a deal.&nbsp; Beyond that, the measure's fate is uncertain.</p> Tue, 03 Dec 2013 13:10:14 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 14214 at How Today's Pension Vote Will Go, Procedure-Wise Strange Bedfellows Could Kill Leaders' Pension Deal <p>Illinois legislators will be asked today (12/3) to take what many say could be the most important vote of their careers. They've been called back to Springfield to take up a measure that would drastically alter the state's retirement plans. Doing so would have obvious ramifications for state employees, teachers and university workers whose pensions are at stake. But the impact of a vote is far more widespread. What happens could also affect everything from the state's credit rating and Illinois' next budget, to the 2014 elections. The outcome is anything but certain.</p> Tue, 03 Dec 2013 12:21:51 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 14208 at Strange Bedfellows Could Kill Leaders' Pension Deal Republican Hopefuls Split On Pension Overhaul <p></p><p>The four Republicans running for Illinois governor are taking diverging stances on the pension measure that's bringing the General Assembly back to Springfield tomorrow. The package drafted by the legislative leaders would cut state workers', teachers' and university employees' retirement benefits.</p><p></p><p>Whether there's enough support for the leaders' plan to pass is uncertain, but it will get Sen. Bill Brady's vote.</p> Tue, 03 Dec 2013 08:58:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 14122 at Republican Hopefuls Split On Pension Overhaul How Leaders Want To Overhaul Illinois Pensions <p></p><p>Details are out on what the leaders of Illinois' General Assembly want to do to the state's retirement systems. They've released an outline of their deal.</p><p>After years of debate about what to do about the $100 billion dollars of unfunded liability Illinois has racked up for its pension systems, legislative leaders announced on Wednesday they had agreed to a deal. But they were tight-lipped about what all it involved.</p><p>That information has now been spelled out in a one-page overview, a memo passed out to members of the House and Senate.</p> Fri, 29 Nov 2013 22:10:24 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 14041 at How Leaders Want To Overhaul Illinois Pensions A Possible Pension Legal Test <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Another legislative session has gone by without a solution in place to bring down the amount Illinois owes the state's retirement systems. Given the clamoring from the governor, business leaders and credit rating agencies for lawmakers to do something about it, legislators mentioned relatively little about pensions before adjourning from their fall veto session last week ... which may well be a sign that something is afoot; there's talk of legislators returning before the year's end to deal with pensions.</p><p></p> Tue, 12 Nov 2013 12:26:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 12824 at A Possible Pension Legal Test Legislative Leaders Take The Reins On Pensions <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span>Overhauling Illinois' pension systems is no longer in the hands of the special committee of legislators that met all summer. How to reduce the state’s $100 billion of long-term pension debt is now in the hands of the General Assembly's four leaders.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">All summer long, state employees and retirees concerned about their retirement benefits had their eyes on a bipartisan conference committee, but insiders say even the key panel members are no longer part of discussions.</span></p> Mon, 11 Nov 2013 21:22:32 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 12803 at Legislative Leaders Take The Reins On Pensions State's Mayors Want Pension Overhaul <p>The new head of the Illinois Municipal League wants lawmakers to remain committed to a pension overhaul. Loves Park Mayor Darryl Lindberg was recently named president of the organization. Lindberg says the group has not put its support behind any one plan, but is paying attention to work being done by the bipartisan pension panel.</p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 15:32:41 +0000 Jenna Dooley 12386 at State's Mayors Want Pension Overhaul Heavy Veto Session Agenda <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Illinois legislators are scheduled to finish out their veto session this week. Their back-loaded agenda ranges from dealing with budget matters to social issues.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The first week of the veto session late last month went by with little of substance accomplished.</span></p><p>But what the General Assembly didn't touch then is back now.</p><p>Like tax packages designed to keep companies, like Archer Daniels Midland, headquartered in Illinois.</p> Mon, 04 Nov 2013 12:22:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 12212 at Heavy Veto Session Agenda Quinn Not Ready To Talk Taxes <p>Though he supported Illinois' income tax hike in the past, Governor Pat Quinn is so far unwilling to take a stance on whether it should expire.</p><p>This fiscal year, Illinois is putting $6.8 billion toward pensions. An amount that's more than covered by how much money the state took in from a higher income tax rate -- the increase alone is projected to pull in almost $8 billion this year.</p><p>But that raises the question: how will Illinois function when the income tax revenues begin to decrease?</p> Thu, 24 Oct 2013 23:15:13 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 11670 at Quinn Not Ready To Talk Taxes Turning The Tables: Legislator Files To Cut Quinn's Budget <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Several months after Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn vetoed legislators' salaries from the state budget -- one lawmaker wants to turn the tables on him.</p><p>Gov. Quinn says lawmakers shouldn't be paid until they overhaul the state's pensions. A judge rejected that move and the governor's appeal is still pending before the state Supreme Court, so lawmakers are getting their paychecks.</p><p>Nevertheless, legislators are still offended by Quinn's "attack," as Rep. David Harris, R - Arlington Heights, describes it.</p> Wed, 23 Oct 2013 11:13:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 11494 at Turning The Tables: Legislator Files To Cut Quinn's Budget Preview: Fall Veto Session <p>For the first time since a brief special session in July,legislators will begin making their way en masse to Springfield this week, for the fall veto session. The agenda before them is relatively light. The General Assembly will likely debate some budget matters. And there's a hearing on a new type of health care coverage for retired state employees. Amanda Vinicky previews what else is ahead.</p><p></p><p></p> Mon, 21 Oct 2013 12:50:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 11345 at Preview: Fall Veto Session Quinn Responds To Pension Absence, Begins Reach Out <p></p><p>Governor Pat Quinn went months without meeting with members of the special legislative committee formed to draft a new pension plan, but this month he has begun to reach out.</p><p></p><p>It was Quinn&#39;s idea to form a conference committee, to bridge differences between the House and Senate over how to reduce Illinois&#39; $100 billion pension debt.</p><p>But the ten members of that panel say other than phone calls welcoming them to the committee, he was absent from their talks from June on, leading to criticisms like this, from Rep. Jil Tracy, a Republican from Quincy.</p> Tue, 15 Oct 2013 22:07:07 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 11001 at Quinn Responds To Pension Absence, Begins Reach Out Cullerton Says Pension Issue Could Bypass Committee <p>Illinois Senate President John Cullerton says the state&#39;s pension problem could be addressed in the fall legislative session even if a committee working on it remains split. &nbsp;<br />The Chicago Democrat tells The Associated Press in an interview that lawmakers could bypass the committee and call a vote through another legislative route. &nbsp;<br />An AP survey found that five of the pension committee&#39;s 10 members still had concerns with a proposed $138 billion savings plan. The Legislature cannot consider a committee proposal unless it is signed by six members. &nbsp; Tue, 15 Oct 2013 18:30:47 +0000 Associated Press 10976 at Cullerton Says Pension Issue Could Bypass Committee Gov. Quinn "AWOL" From Pension Committee's Talks <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">As he runs for re-election, </span>Gov<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Pat Quinn is staking a lot on getting something done with pensions. He making a show of asking the state Supreme Court let him cancel legislators&#39; salaries until it&#39;s done, and he says he won&#39;t deal with other major issues before the General Assembly -- like using tax credits to keep ADM headquartered in Illinois -- until there&#39;s what he calls a &quot;comprehensive pension solution.&quot; But it&#39;s hard to tell just what that means. Tue, 15 Oct 2013 12:23:28 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 10943 at Gov. Quinn "AWOL" From Pension Committee's Talks Pension Committee Considering Adding 401(k) Option <p></p><p>With an eye toward reaching an agreement in time for the upcoming veto session, legislators on a special pension committee met Friday in Chicago. The conversations focused on giving state employees and teachers a new style of retirement plan.</p> Fri, 11 Oct 2013 22:24:37 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 10801 at Pension Committee Considering Adding 401(k) Option Quinn Asking Supreme Court To Back Him In Lawmaker Pay Dispute <p></p> Wed, 02 Oct 2013 22:16:30 +0000 Associated Press 10146 at Quinn Asking Supreme Court To Back Him In Lawmaker Pay Dispute Pension Conference Committee Progress Report <p></p><p>It is approaching four months since the Illinois General Assembly adjourned its spring session. Lawmakers have missed two paychecks since the governor decided to punish them for not passing a pension overhaul. And a special committee has been negotiating over how to solve the pension problem for more than 12 weeks. Amanda Vinicky checks in with members of that committee for a progress report.<br />&nbsp;</p> Thu, 26 Sep 2013 11:46:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 9671 at Pension Conference Committee Progress Report Pension Plan Not Finalized, But The End May Be Near <p>Legislators writing an overhaul of the state's pension systems could be nearing the end of their work.</p><p>Feedback's been plentiful since late last month, when a draft of a pension plan drawn up by a bipartisan legislative committee was leaked. Unions hate it - saying it overreaches in cutting retirement benefits. Business groups say it doesn't go far enough to save the state money. Not to mention complaints, including from the governor, that the committee is taking too long.</p> Thu, 05 Sep 2013 11:50:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 8374 at Pension Plan Not Finalized, But The End May Be Near Pension Returns Up; Problems Remain <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Illinois' largest public pension fund hit a major low in 2012, its rate of return was less than one percent.&nbsp; But an early analysis shows the last fiscal year was better than expected. The success isn’t expected to make much of a dent in Illinois’ nearly $100 billion dollar pension liability, however, which lawmakers thus far have failed to tackle. &nbsp;&nbsp;</span></p><p></p> Tue, 20 Aug 2013 22:03:17 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 7592 at Pension Returns Up; Problems Remain Pension Chairman Raoul Possible Democratic Challenger <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Governor Pat Quinn already has one primary challenger, but there's talk he may get more.&nbsp;</p><p></p><p>A lot of politicians are heading to the capital city this week; it's the State Fair, and a time for annual political meetings and rallies.</p><p>Democratic Sen.&nbsp;Kwame Raoul was driving down from Chicago Tuesday afternoon, in time for his fundraiser last night at a Springfield bar.</p> Wed, 14 Aug 2013 01:43:00 +0000 Amanda Vinicky 7248 at Pension Chairman Raoul Possible Democratic Challenger