What now for Illinois pension reform? – Blogs On Politics – Crain’s Chicago Business

9 Jan

In his own, awkward way, Gov. Pat Quinn wasn’t far off the mark Tuesday with his Hail Mary plan to hand the job of resolving the state’s pension crisis to an outside commission, one in which lawmakers would have only limited influence.

After one of the most discouraging legislative sessions in memory — and that’s saying a lot in Illinois — I’ve just about given up hope that Springfield’s key players have the will or the ability to craft a deal that will save the state, its taxpayers and its economy without disemboweling retirees. Some outside force may well be needed to spur action, be it a commission, a downgrade of Illinois debt to junk level, or an announcement from a major employer that it’s leaving the state.

Springfield could have acted. The elements of a reasonable political deal were there. They still are. But it didn’t, thanks to a true witch’s brew of ego, greed, arrogance, irresponsibility and plain old political cowardice. But, I guess, what else could you expect from a General Assembly that now includes no fewer than three members awaiting criminal trial on felony charges, and from a state where even leaders such as Mayor Rahm Emanuel were AWOL on an issue of critical importance to Chicago?

Sad. Very sad. More…

via What now for Illinois pension reform? – Blogs On Politics – Crain’s Chicago Business.

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