House gets Madigan pension plan moving – DailyHerald.com

1 May

A committee of state lawmakers this morning set up a showdown in the Illinois House over legislation to cut public employees’ pension benefits.

Unlike previous proposals that have sputtered for months, the plan approved by a House committee today was sponsored by House Speaker Michael Madigan, a powerful Chicago Democrat.

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan’s new pension cost-cutting proposal would:

  • Try to guarantee the state pays its share into pension funds every year.
  • Cap how much of an employee’s annual salary can count toward a pension at about $109,000. That number would grow slowly over the years.
  • Reduce retirees’ annual cost-of-living adjustments. A retiree would get a 3 percent annual increase calculated on $1,000 for every year worked. Someone who worked 20 years would get an annual increase of 3 percent of $20,000, or $600.
  • Require employees to pay 2 percent more of their salaries toward retirement.
  • Raise the retirement age by one to five years, depending on how old a worker is when the law takes effect.

The plan, which largely resembles one pushed by state Elaine Nekritz of Northbrook, was approved by a 9-1 vote.

It would raise the retirement age for teachers and state workers, make them pay 2 percent more of their salaries toward retirement and reduce retirees’ annual benefit raises.

Union leaders fought back hard. Illinois Federation of Teachers President Dan Montgomery painted a picture at the morning hearing of teachers already at work for hours in schools around the state as lawmakers vote to cut their retirements. More…

via House gets Madigan pension plan moving – DailyHerald.com.

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