Education Report, Former Gov. Edgar defends public pensions

5 Dec

SPRINGFIELD – Former Gov. Jim Edgar says the corporate titans who are pressing state officials to fix Illinois’ deep financial problems need to temper their criticism of the pensions received by government employees.

Edgar, a Republican who has served on some corporate boards, said he thinks some of the wealthy businessmen who’ve been pushing for a pension overhaul don’t understand that state workers don’t have the same types of compensation packages as those in private business.

“I think people in the private sector don’t understand there are some limitations in the public sector they didn’t have,” Edgar said. “I see what bonuses they get and things state employees don’t have.”

“We never had profit sharing. We never had stock options. We never had bonuses. All we really had was our retirement,” Edgar said. “They ought to be a little more understanding and not quite as harsh on state workers as they’ve been.”

The former governor’s comments came as Gov. Pat Quinn continues to push for pension legislation designed to begin addressing an unfunded liability of $94 billion within the state’s five employee retirement systems. More…

via Education Report, Former Gov. Edgar defends public pensions.

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