Thursday, May 28, 2020

Bankruptcy is not an option for Illinois cities or other units under current law

  July 29, 2013   Perhaps you've started wondering whether the Bankruptcy Code could offer a fresh start to Illinois, Cook County, Chicago, or other units of...

In Illinois Senate, Leadership in Both Parties Must Finally Acknowledge Full Severity of Pension Crisis – WP Original

March 6, 2014 By: Mark Glennon Springfield is taking its time about it, but soon, hopefully, it will legislate reforms of city and local...

Illinois Chamber of Commerce: Reform must happen

http://www.nwherald.com/2012/11/12/illinois-fiscal-cliff-is-public-pensions-reform-must-happen/a9b2m0z/

Berg: Don’t be fooled by ‘penny for schools’ tax – Opinion – INN

A Missouri corporation is making a pretty penny helping to hike local sales taxes across Illinois. But in the process, it’s proving how local...

The money is gone — a timeless movie clip for IL legislators and public union bosses

    A financial advisor tries to explain what it means to "have no money" to Walter Matthau's character in A New Leaf linked here. Should be required...

Chicago’s Lessons for Muni Holders – Barron’s

As Barron's sees it,  pension reform is a long process that can take years or even decades to execute, but pension problems are rarely...

In Depth: Moody’s Downgrade Reflects Chicago’s Pension Crisis and Looming Budgetary Challenges – Civic Federation

Had the City made a pension payment equal to the actuarially determined amount of $1.5 billion, or 32.0% of operating revenue, the City would...

Illinois hiding from data essential to considering Madigan’s surcharge on the rich – WP Original

  March 21, 2014 By: Mark Glennon How much of the new revenue that would come from higher taxes on Illinois' rich would be cancelled out...

Ill. House OKs millionaire tax question – NWI Times

The Illinois House endorsed a plan Friday to place a non-binding question on the November ballot asking whether millionaires should be taxed at a...

Springfield police pension board violating order, state agency says – State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x1367240483/City-board-violating-pension-order-state-agency-says

Pension Reform that is Sham Reform – Points and Figures

http://pointsandfigures.com/2013/12/04/pension-reform-sham-reform/

Sloppiest pension reporting of the week goes to the Associated Press – WP Original

By: Mark Glennon*   A 56% increase in Chicago's telephone tax might substitute for a huge property tax to solve Chicago's pension crisis, right? That's what...

Chicago’s true pension debt over twice as bad as reported – State Budget Solutions

http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/chicagos-true-pension-debt-exceeds-87-billion The officially reported unfunded liability of Chicago pensions is already insurmountable and would require half of city tax revenue to fix, but the...

Rauner offers few details on pension crisis – Tribune

Comment: The truth is that the details of his vision are academic. He will still have to get anything past a majority Democratic House...

The wheels could come off in Illinois sooner than expected – WP Original

“How did you go bankrupt?" Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.” ― Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises   By: Mark Glennon*   How will rating agencies, bond investors,...

Only a devastating shock will get real action on Illinois pensions, but what? – WirePoints Original

  "I think it's going to reach a point where there's either social disorder or bankruptcy before people will act." That’s what Richard Ravich said about...

Retirement benefits: Who pays the bill? – The Economist

  via Retirement benefits: Who pays the bill? | The Economist.

Where it really matters, Chicago’s unfunded pension liability per household is a whopping $900,000 – WP Original

  September 27, 2013 If you follow the pension crisis you're probably especially alarmed by the per-person estimates of unfunded pension liabilities.  What's overlooked, however, is...

Interview with Chicago’s CFO – Chicago Policy Review

"From a city level, what makes Chicago unique is the layering effect. Chicago is the worst funded city in pensions in the worst pension...

Gov. Quinn, let Chicago solve its pension crisis – Tribune

"Governor, you don't have to own whatever City Hall does after you sign the pension bill. So stop owning it." via Gov. Quinn, let Chicago...

Illinois Losing to California Shows Pension Penalty – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-03/illinois-losing-to-california-shows-pension-penalty.html

Illinois Legislature Approves Benefit Cuts in Troubled Pension System – NYTimes.com

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/04/us/politics/illinois-legislature-approves-benefit-cuts-in-troubled-pension-system.html?_r=0

Nobel Prize Winner Flags the Central Lie in Illinois Pensions – WP Original

  December 19, 2013  By: Mark Glennon This year's winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, Eugene Fama from the University of Chicago, recently made...

Chicago is on the road to Detroit – Tribune

"Yet here we are on a Wednesday when the mayor probably will get approval from a derelict City Council to issue another up-to-$900 million...

Is the unfunded liability of Illinois’ teachers’ pension twice as bad as they say? – WirePoints Original

  The Illinois Teachers System (TRS), the state's largest pension fund, released the editorial linked here on November 16.  It says "TRS at the end...

Wisconsin retirees could face 13 percent pension cut – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-wisconsin-retirees-could-face-13-percent-pension-cut-20121228,0,1456785.story?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed: chicagotribune/views (chicagotribune.com - Most Viewed Stories)&utm_content=My Yahoo

Illinois’ tax revenue up but probably not for long

Illinois' Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability has an interesting recent report.  Tax revenues surged in April maintaining their historically high rate.  But the...

Illinois Awaits Further Credit Cut After Latest Pension Flop – Businessweek

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-06-02/illinois-awaits-further-credit-cut-after-latest-pension-failure

Illinois House passes pension fix for Chicago park district – Chicago Sun-Times

"Chicago Park District’s $971 million pension shortfall that threatens 6,100 existing park employees or retirees.... Current employees would be asked to contribute up to...

Reeder: Time has come for public pensions to give way to 401(k)s – Northwest Herald

http://www.nwherald.com/2013/11/27/reeder-time-has-come-for-public-pensions-to-give-way-to-401ks/crapvaf/ Like the failed "Edgar Ramp" for pensions implemented in the 1990s by Governor Edgar, the new pension deal would just put off cuts to...

Report: The crisis hits home: Illinois’ local pension problem – Illinois Policy Institute

City of Springfield among the worst, where pensions eat up 100% of property taxes. Full report linked here. A must-read for anybody who cares about their...

Five Illinois “fair tax” myths about progressive income tax – Reboot/IPI

http://illinoispolicy.org/five-illinois-fair-tax-myths/

Financial Literacy in High School: Necessary and Relevant – Edutopia

Most high school students are making financial choices now. Many shop, have jobs, pay bills, are eligible for tax refunds if they file, have...

Lessons from the Edgar plan: why defined benefits can’t work – Illinois Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/news/article.asp?ArticleSource=5763

Governor Quinn’s Whopping Lie About the Pension Deal – WP Original

  November 28, 2013, By: Mark Glennon   Yesterday, Illinois Governor Patrick Quinn issued a statement about the recent pension agreement among legislative leaders in which he...

AFSCME union President: pension reform law ‘grand larceny’ – Chicago Sun-Times

We trust you will see his dishonesty, again, in the 'average' pension number he references of $28k. True averages are here. http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/24212197-418/union-leader-pension-reform-law-grand-larceny.html

Illinois taxpayers pay no matter how public pensions perform – Watchdog.org

Taxpayers effectively shoulder the cost of the guaranty, which far, far exceeds the contributions made to the pensions by the state and employees. http://watchdog.org/122260/illinois-pensions/

Study: State retiree healtchare liability more than earlier thought – $56 billion and entirely unfunded! – Illinois Review

For some perspective, that $56 billion healthcare hole is a big as the state's pension hole was just five years ago. http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2014/04/illinois-taxpayers-owe-56b-in-unfunded-retiree-health-care-costs.html

Chicago’s $63 billion debt burden – Illinois Policy Institute

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/chicagos-63-billion-debt-burden/

You Might Not Know Your City Is Going Broke – Bloomberg

The State Budget Crisis Task Force this week called for reforms to eliminate budgeting “gimmicks and short-term measures that obscure actual financial conditions." Sound...

Rahm Emanuel Faces New Test With Chicago Pension Crisis – Wall Street Journal

"Rahm Emanuel worked to buff his image as the hard-driving mayor of the nation's third-largest city in the CNN TV series Chicagoland. But the...

Bankrupt Illinois Madness Never Stops; House Committee Wants Taxpayers to Spend $100 Million on Barack Obama Library – Townhall

http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/mikeshedlock/2014/04/20/bankrupt-illinois-madness-never-stops-house-committee-wants-taxpayers-to-spend-100-million-on-barack-obama-library-n1826613

It’s time to change the way Illinois state budgets are created – Reboot lllinois

A former state legislator says we need longer-term budgeting, openness in the budget process and reduction of the use of special funds, which often...

Chicago’s Biggest Bondholders Torn on City’s Future – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-05-07/chicago-s-biggest-bondholders-torn-on-city-s-future-muni-credit.html

Illinois lawmakers snuck a pay raise for themselves in the budget – Reboot

For their part-time job, the lowest paid state legislator earns $68,000, plus pension, health insurance and $111 for each day the legislature is in...

Great summary of the Illinois pension crisis

You may or may not like libertarian politics, but if you want hard facts on the Illinois fiscal crisis you'd be wise to follow...

Everything you need to know about actuarial standards in public pensions — in five short points

  August 30, 2013   Just about all numbers you see reported on public pensions come from actuarial consultants hired by the government, whose work accords with...

Warren Buffett Says Pension Tapeworm Means Decade of Bad News – Bloomberg

Public pension plans threaten the financial health of U.S. cities and states more than taxpayers realize, billionaire investor Warren Buffett said. “Citizens and public...

State Medicaid Programs Face Millions in New Fees – Governing.com

States are trying to figure out how to budget for a new Affordable Care Act fee that varies based on how much they rely...

Quinn calls for making tax increase permanent

Full text of Quinn's budget address linked here.   http://politics.suntimes.com/article/springfield/quinn-plans-call-making-income-tax-hike-permanent/wed-03262014-1229pm

Emanuel’s tax hike down in Springfield, but not out

Just because the quarter-billion dollar property tax hike the mayor wants has been removed from Springfield legislation doesn’t mean it’s not going to happen....

Illinois Fiscal Health Approaches Critical Juncture, S&P Says – Businessweek

Comment: "Critical Juncture"? Hell, we were at that 15 years ago. That's the same vacuous phrase Quinn used in his State of the State...

Outside experts size up Illinois pension mess: twice as big as the state admits — WirePoints Original

  "A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves." Edward. R. Murrow December 9, 2012, Updated January 9, 2012 A primary reason for the fiscal calamity...

Teachers Union Reportedly Clouts States to Fire Fund Managers for Advocating Pension Reform

  According to articles in Pensions & Investments and Barrons, the American Federation of Teachers has a solution for investment firms run by people who,...

The Blue State Reckoning (Illinois, that is) – Wall Street Journal

The partnership of public unions and liberal politicians is hitting the wall. via Review & Outlook: The Blue State Reckoning - WSJ.com.

In face of Chicago downgrade, IL legislature looks to more pension borrowing – State Budget Solutions

http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/in-face-of-chicago-downgrade-il-legislature-looks-to-more-pension-borrowing

Many pensions just fund a second career – Reboot Illinois

"Retire." Get pension. Start a different government job. http://www.rebootillinois.com/?opinion=10027

Vogel: Pathways clear to expedited ruling in pension case – Pantagraph

"Voters deserve to know how deep the fiscal quagmire is before they choose their governor. But I’m not holding my breath. As you might...

Illinois Lawmaker Wants Tax Breaks for Olympic Medalists – NBC Chicago

We're comforted to know our lawmakers are laser focused on crafting tax policy that will generate jobs and opportunity. http://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/ward-room/Illinois-Lawmaker-Wants-Tax-Breaks-for-Olympic-Medalists-246350441.html

Moody’s lowers Peoria’s bond rating, city still ranks better than Chicago and state – Peoria Journal-Star

Unfunded state mandates regarding pension funds for fire, police and other city workers contributed to the bond downgrade. http://www.pjstar.com/article/20140310/NEWS/140319879/1994/NEWS?rssfeed=true

Another bond downgrade: Moody’s chops Chicago schools, Chicago Park District – Crain’s

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20140315/NEWS01/140319778/moodys-cuts-ratings-for-chicago-schools-park-district

Illinois’ next pension issue: Police, fire funds – Associated Press

Comment: Some of these city pensions don't have a snowball's chance of ever paying the benefits they have promised, though you won't see that...

Appeals court ruling looks ominous for Illinois pension changes – Crain’s Chicago Business

In a case with implications for the upcoming legal battle over pension reform, an Illinois appellate court in Springfield ruled that constitutional protections prevent...

Illinois House approves an oxymoron: a “budget without revenue to cover expenses”

Comment: So much for the constitutional balanced budget requirement in our one-party state. Rep. Jack Franks once again stood alone among Democrats saying it's...

Pension law uncertainty leaves some professors in retirement limbo – Sun-Times

Comment: Pensioners think defined benefit plans provide more certainty than alternatives. They're going to gradually realize that's not so; stories like this will become...

Illinois’ fiscal year 2015 budget post-mortem – Illinois Policy Institute

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/illinois-fiscal-year-2015-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/

On blogs, cops offer own take on federal report – Sun-Times

There was nearly unanimous scorn for a report that anonymous commenters dismissed as a “scam,” a “crock of s—” and “garbage” that was produced...

Pension time bomb ready to explode – The Telegraph

Someone needs to step forward, though, and be willing not just to say the system is broken — because it is — but to...

Let the unions kill the new Illinois pension deal

November 29, 2013  By: Mark Glennon   Today, key Illinois legislators released the list of "details" of their long awaited pension deal. The release is linked...

An independent, honest actuary’s response to the Illinois pension deal – UPDATED

  November 30, 2013 By: Mark Glennon John Bury is an actuary and a nationally recognized pension expert in New Jersey, who writes regularly about public...

Reaction of various politicians and policy groups

Here are some reactions from politicians and policy institutes: via Reaction to Pension Reform Vote | Chicago Tonight | WTTW.

Pension deal brings long-awaited financial optimism – Civic Committee President

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20131204/OPINION/131209911/why-you-should-give-mike-madigan-a-hug Only a tiny bit of optimism, in our view. This piece ran in Crain's various headlines, one of which was "Give Madigan a Hug." A...

Illinois Pension Fix Ends Bleeding Before Bond Sale – Bloomberg

That Bloomberg headline seems much too rosy. The penalty credit spread that the market places on Illinois bonds is still stuck at July 2013...

Alternative plan for Chicago pensions – Illinois Policy Institute

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/chicagopensions/

Emanuel’s pension fix costly, but pain is likely to double – Crain’s

The $250 million annual property tax increase that Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants to shore up two of Chicago's dangerously underfunded pension funds could almost...

April is Financial Literacy Month – The Edwardsville Intelligence

When it comes to budgeting and debt, are you financially literate? Over two-fifths of U.S. adults would give themselves a grade of C, D...

Forget what you’ve read about taxpayers funding Obama library, here’s what’s really going on – WP Original

By: Mark Glennon   No, Illinois taxpayers aren't going to put $100 million into the Obama presidential library as Governor Quinn and House Speaker Michael Madigan...

Indiana Secretary of Commerce explains why they’re beating us – Crain’s Chicago Business

"Nobody wants to be the last one left in Illinois when the bill arrives." via Indiana is It a shade http://activemall.ro/media/sh404_upgrade_conf.php?does-cialis-expire/ right love the http://af-bethleem.org/ltq/indian-propecia-pharmacy/...

Pension returns climb, but hold the applause – CBS Market Watch

As recently as 1982, most pension investments were in bonds -- where they should be if they really want to guaranty the promises they...

Chicago’s Infrastructure Trust falls short of expectations – Crain’s

As it prepares to embark on a sweeping overhaul of city streetlights, the infrastructure trust that Mayor Rahm Emanuel once hailed as a model...

5 Things to Watch When Cutting Public Pensions

12 via 5 Things to Watch When Cutting Public Pensions.

The pension spike survives – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-spike-20130102,0,7064187.story

Chicago Teachers’ Pension Sinks Further Into the Abyss

  As reported by Crain's this week, problems for Chicago Public Schools worsened with the release of a report showing it will have to come...

Cullerton: Pension issue could bypass committee

http://www.pantagraph.com/news/state-and-regional/illinois/cullerton-pension-issue-could-bypass-committee/article_d5f5e2a9-7c25-5caa-85df-d225843efd8b.html

Pension Reform Proposal Outline Released

http://www.wics.com/news/top-stories/stories/vid_14485.shtml  

Battle over police pensions in US cities takes ugly turn – CNBC

Nothing about Illinois in here yet, but you have to worry if that will come. http://www.cnbc.com/id/101342970

Battles Loom in Many States Over What to Do With Budget Surpluses – New York Times

Not in Illinois. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/03/us/battles-loom-in-many-states-over-what-to-do-with-budget-surpluses.html?hp&_r=0

Emanuel’s pension plan ‘no panacea,’ Moody’s says

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/emanuels-pension-plan-no-panacea-moodys-says/mon-04072014-101pm

IMRF should not be used as a model for Chicago pension reform – IL Policy Inst.

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/imrf-should-not-be-used-as-a-model-for-chicago/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=imrf-should-not-be-used-as-a-model-for-chicago

Foxes are guarding the pension henhouse – Rare

Trustees who run public pensions are predominantly union officials, especially in Illinois. Comment: It's a huge blemish on former Governor Jim Thompson's record. He handed...

Taxpayer money for Obama library: Here we go again – Alton Telegraph

"In a move seemingly bankrupt of ethics — even when applying the wink-and-a-handshake standards of Illinois politics — a legislative panel voted last week...

Illinois city mayors sound off about their own pension crises – Associated Press

Comment: Some Illinois cities have pensions with only 30% or 40% of what they need to pay what they have promised, and are already...

Pension Free-For-All – Better Government Ass.

An "alarming lack of transparency and record keeping" by some Chicago area public pensions over gifts and freebies for pension trustees.

Chicago aldermen still trying to kick pension can down the road – Early & Often

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/chicago-aldermen-still-trying-kick-pension-can-down-road/wed-04302014-1024pm

Motion Filed To Put Pension Law On Hold – WUIS

Comment: A 'stay' order against implementation of last years' pension bill was fully anticipated. Senate President John Cullerton has said so openly. Combine that...

Third version of FY 2015 budget bills pass Illinois House – Reuters

A spokeswoman for Senate President John Cullerton admitted that "the effect of budget is to delay doomsday by borrowing and increasing our backlog of...

Cook County’s pension reform flop – IPI

In a nutshell, the "reform" plan is for the county to throw lots more into the pension -- 50% more in four years. But...

Illinois Comptroller’s monthly report for May

Highlights: Income tax receipts (by far the biggest source of state revenue) basically flat compared to last year. Sales taxes year-to-date up 4.3%. Backlog...

Rauner releases his ‘Bring Back Blueprint’; full text here

http://brucerauner.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/blueprint_part1_print1.pdf

Another lame editorial on pension reform

http://www.suntimes.com/opinions/16222915-474/editorial-a-quack-at-reform.html

Revenue from “temporary” 66% tax increase diverted entirely to pensions and Medicaid

http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local/illinois&id=8901532

The Empire Strikes Back: Union-Supported Bill to Lien State Cash for Pensions Passes State Senate

  "Pension reform"? Or is it fairer to think of it as a lien on all state cash to ensure it will be spent on...

Illinois pension reform: Civic Federation sides with Madigan over Cullerton – Crain’s

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20130513/BLOGS02/130519977

“Reform” Committee Teeing Up Pension Liability for Huge Kick Down the Road – WirePoints Original

  August 23, 2013   An outline of ideas being considered by the 10-person Illinois pension committee circulated today. Links are here for Reuters and AP articles....

Back to basics on fixing Illinois state pensions – Eden Martin

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/22546226-452/back-to-basics-on-fixing-state-pensions.html

The “average” public sector pensions numbers every Illinoisan should read

September 27, 2013 You've been lied to. Pension supporters and public employee unions have long gotten away with claiming average pension payments are in the...

Ill. pension fight could create deeper fiscal hole – FOX 32 News

http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/24129686/ill-pension-fight-could-create-deeper-fiscal-hole Rahm: “Should Chicago fail to get pension relief soon, we will be faced with a 2015 budget that will either double city property taxes...

Even California worried that minimum wage increases could mean loss of jobs – San Francisco Examiner

http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/study-minimum-wage-increases-could-mean-lose-of-jobs-in-sf/Content?oid=2680102

Study: Savings from new Illinois pension law ‘barely dent’ fiscal problems – WBEZ

"Barely dent" the problem: That's the same phrase we used a month before the pension bill was passed to describe it, when an outline...

Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis vows to fight cuts to retiree pensions – WBEZ

Rahm is ignoring her, going straight to the legislature -- as he should. http://www.wbez.org/news/teachers-union-president-vows-fight-cuts-pensions-109618

Illinois public pension problem: Exactly how big is it? – WBEZ

Kudos to author Alex Keefe who, in this piece, questions whether the official pension numbers are right. He stands pretty much alone in our...

More on Chicago’s credit rating cut – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-05/chicago-cut-to-3-levels-above-junk-by-moody-s-on-pensions.html

Would Ending The Corporate Income Tax Decrease Income Inequality? – Points and Figures

Comment: The hallmark of populist demagoguery on the march in Illinois now is denial of these plain facts: Corporations don't pay any taxes. They...

Raise Your State’s Minimum Wage? Why Be Like California? – Manhattan Inst.

In a global economy, where competitive countries battle for business with well-trained, disciplined, experienced employees, America is putting itself at a disadvantage by keeping...

Rahm removes property-tax requirement in city pension bill

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/gov-quinn-rahms-pension-property-tax-hike-no-can-do/mon-04072014-1217pm

Kudos: The Oregonian Wins Pulitzer for Editorials on its State’s Pensions

Comment: Don't expect one in Illinois. Our media are part of the problem. They've underplayed our pension crisis for years and accept government spun...

Rauner Wants “Special Deal” for Police, Firefighter Pensions – WTTW

http://chicagotonight.wttw.com/2014/04/15/rauner-wants-special-deal-police-firefighter-pensions

April saw surge in state retirements amid pension questions – A.P.

Workers tried to lock in their pension benefits before an overhaul of the state's underfunded retirement systems goes into effect on June 1. http://www.pantagraph.com/news/state-and-regional/illinois/government-and-politics/april-saw-surge-in-state-retirements-amid-pension-questions/article_2737b1ab-b51e-5c4d-aec8-fdb046186f44.html

Illinois universities struggle to soften pension losses – Associated Press

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Illinois-schools-struggle-to-soften-pension-losses-5452195.php

Gov. Quinn: Borrow money to give homeowners to get tax rebate – FOX 32 News

The Civic Federation, a business group, says we can't afford another stunt to buy votes in an election year. http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/25509135/gov-quinn-homeowners-to-get-tax-rebate

If Detroit’s Not Too Big To Fail… — The American Magazine

...then Chicago is not. With the instructive Detroit precedent, with shrunken populations, and with underfunded municipal pensions common, we can conclude that nobody, not...

House working on less severe tax-rollback budget plan – Illinois Issues

http://illinoisissuesblog.blogspot.com/2014/05/house-working-on-less-severe-tax.html

More on the new ‘middle road’ budget – Illinois Issues

http://illinoisissuesblog.blogspot.com/2014/05/budget-middle-road-paved-with-short.html

A Federal Bailout of Illinois Pensions Will Open the Floodgates – National Review

http://www.nationalreview.com/agenda/340230/illinois-pension-bailout-will-open-floodgates-reihan-salam

Business leaders sign letter opposing Cullerton’s “pension reform” bill

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/03/business-leaders-oppose-cullertons-pension-reform-bill.html

“No pension reform, no paychecks”? Why not “no pension reform, no pension contributions”? – WirePoints Original

June 11, 2013 Governor Quinn now says he will withhold pay for state legislators until they pass a pension reform bill. Reaction is generally positive,...

A tiny glimmer of light in Springfield’s pension work – WP Original

  November 20, 2013  By: Mark Glennon   A major figure in the Illinois legislature told me today to expect the "guaranty" provision in coming pension reform...

Will pension reform save or destroy higher ed in Illinois? Two U of I business profs opine

http://www.news-gazette.com/opinion/guest-commentary/2013-11-24/will-pension-reform-save-or-destroy-higher-ed-illinois.html

A flawed belief in government promises – Jacksonvilee Journal Courier

"What I can’t understand, is while the theft was going on in plain sight, unionized state workers routinely voted back into power the very...

Illinois Sets $1 Billion bond sale in February after pension fix – Bloomberg

The deal will be Illinois’s second since lawmakers in December bolstered the worst-funded U.S. state pension system. Note also that Illinois' credit "spread...

What 37 governors are planning for their states – Washington Post

The 37 governors' speeches so far offer a preview of the priorities for each state executive. And they reflect more optimism than in years...

Durkin and Levine: 401(k)s will help solve Illinois’ pension crisis

http://www.sj-r.com/article/20140218/OPINION/140219487/10511/NEWS?template=printart

State should approve IRA bill, help Illinoisans save – Chicago Sun-Times

For opposing opinion, see here. http://www.suntimes.com/opinions/25444217-474/state-should-approve-ira-bill-help-illinoisans-save.html

Illinois Legislature 2014 budget could be for only 6 months – Voices

That would leave it up to whoever is elected governor in November to steer a second six-month budget during the Legislature’s post-election veto session...

Illinois legislators bail from their own pension plan – Illinois News Network

Increasingly, Illinois lawmakers are opting not to participate in the state pension system, a trend some see as a realization of the bleak outlook...

Civic Federation: State should reduce income tax but tax retirees

Illinois should freeze its income tax rate one year then lower it 20 percent during a three-year ramp-down and begin taxing retirement income like...

Moody’s downgrades Chicago again amid pension crisis – CNN Money

"Massive and growing" pension hole. Lowest credit rating for any major city except Detroit. via Moody's downgrades Chicago amid pension crisis - Mar. 4, 2014.

Cost of Illinois’ Retirement Income Tax Exemption – Civic Federation

The Illinois Comptroller estimates that this exemption of federally taxable retirement income reduced the State’s individual income tax revenues by $2.0 billion in FY2012. http://www.civicfed.org/iifs/blog/cost-illinois-retirement-income-tax-exemption

Illinois governor outlines pension contribution increases in budget address – Pensions & Investments

http://www.pionline.com/article/20140326/ONLINE/140329911/illinois-governor-outlines-pension-contribution-increases-in-budget-address

Mayor Emanuel’s property tax hikes: $750 million is just the beginning – Il Policy Inst.

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/mayor-emanuels-property-tax-hikes-750-million-is-just-the-beginning/

Chicago’s Partial Pension Overhaul Passes Legislature – The Bond Buyer

"Madigan outlined changes in the new version and took questions, some of which he couldn't answer, such as how the city intends to fully...

The progressive income tax was never about tax relief – IL Policy Inst.

part of the progressive tax hike scheme is about making as much of the temporary tax hike permanent as possible while still calling it...

Chicago Pension Measures in Doubt as Quinn Withholds Signature – Businessweek

Meanwhile, Mayor Emanuel has ripped into Bruce Rauner for his opposition to the city pension bill. http://www.businessweek.com/news/2014-04-22/chicago-pension-measures-in-doubt-as-quinn-withholds-signature

Pension reform typo leaves thousands hanging in the balance – The Daily Illini

http://www.dailyillini.com/news/article_21f858ba-c901-11e3-bb14-0017a43b2370.html

Nasty surprise in new push for an Illinois “fair tax” – Tribune

For most people, income taxes would increase above the rate that Democrats have already written into state law for 2015. via Surprise in new push...

Pat Quinn’s Funny Money – Tribune

Quinn floated the idea of sharing state tax revenue with Chicago and other cities. But where's that state money to share? It's a political...

Analysis: Has Chicago become a pension fund with a city attached? – Early & Often

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/analysis-has-chicago-become-pension-fund-city-attached/wed-04302014-803pm

Illinois Comptroller’s monthly report

Highlights: -Big drop in revenue from income tax compared to last April -Continued improvement in backlog of unpaid bills, but still high at $4.9 billion -Modest improvement...

Complaining About Illinois Actuaries – Burypensions

"Did the "actuaries for the State Employees’ Retirement System of Illinois (SERS) deviate from industry standards for public pension funding and assumption setting? Sadly,...

Democratic Illinois Rep. says mismanaged lottery costing taxpayers hundreds of millions – Tribune

State Rep. Jack Franks, D-Marengo, said the state’s contract with Northstar Lottery Group has cost taxpayers hundreds of millions in lost revenues due to...

And now the lawyer for taxpayers takes center stage on pension reform: Lisa Madigan – Tribune

Comment: Part of the sheer madness in our pension system is that taxpayers have to count on a political pensioner and her pensioner staff...

State budget battle far from over

The No. 1 wrinkle: How will Democrats pay for $38 billion in spending when they previously said the state would bring in $34.5 billion...

Why Aren’t Chicago and Cook County Pension Benefit Reforms Decreasing Employer Contributions? – Civic Federation

The short answer is that Chicago, Cook County and the Chicago Park District (among other local governments in northeastern Illinois) have been contributing an...

Another Springfield pension stunt: Trivial changes to police and fire pensions in exchange for moratorium on real reform – WBEZ

State Sen. Terry Link, D-Waukegan,is proposing some changes to how these pensions are managed, but would not cut benefits, increase retirement ages or require...

Illinois Senate Passes Cook County Pension Legislation – The Bond Buyer

It was introduced just hours before the vote so, as usual, most lawmakers have no idea what's in it. All indications are that it's...

New Illinois budget doesn’t help next governor – Tribune

"I wouldn't be surprised if what's going through the Democrats' minds is, 'We'll limp through the election and if (Rauner) wins, screw him. And...

15 absurd facts about the 2015 Illinois budget – Reboot

http://www.rebootillinois.com/2014/06/01/editors-picks/madeleinedoubek/15-absurd-facts-2015-illinois-budget/9576/?utm_medium=social&utm_content=@mdoubekrebootil&utm_source=twitter

Financial Times’ story on Illinois pensions

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/4787bdca-5ff6-11e2-8d8d-00144feab49a.html#axzz2IGRy4QEL

Pension reform shouldn’t include contract guarantee – Opinion

http://www.suntimes.com/news/otherviews/17755243-452/pension-reform-shouldnt-include-contract-guarantee.html

Illinois Credit Rating Lowered by S&P as Pension Costs Rise – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-01-25/illinois-credit-rating-lowered-by-s-p-as-pension-burden-climbs.html

Summit on Illinois pension woes ends with no new plan – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/12/us-usa-illinois-pensions-idUSBRE91B03R20130212?feedType=RSS

Quinn delivers his budget address – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/06/us-usa-illinois-budget-idUSBRE9251LR20130306

SEC’s focus on Illinois pension shenanigans is welcome, but not enough – Daily Caller

http://dailycaller.com/2013/03/20/secs-focus-on-illinois-pension-shenanigans-is-welcome-but-not-enough/

Madigan offers his pension reform proposal – WirePoints Original

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan finally weighed in yesterday on pension reform, offering a proposal that will surely become the front runner. It already...

9,900 Illinois Government Pensioners With Annual Pension Over $100k – Taxpayers United of America

http://www.taxpayersunitedofamerica.org/uncategorized/9900-illinois-government-pensioners-with-annual-pension-over-100k

Quinn Calls Special Session on Pensions – NBC Chicago

http://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/ward-room/Moodys-Lowers-Illinois-Credit-Rating-Quinn-Calls-Special-Session-210440261.html

Ratings Service Moody’s Finds Pension Shortfall – NYT

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/06/27/moodys-shows-wider-pension-gap-for-states/

Chicago agency’s pension reform could be legal test case – Associated Press

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/I/IL_ILLINOIS_PENSIONS_PARK_DISTRICT_ILOL-?SITE=ILBLO&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

What we know about the new pension deal so far – Reboot Illinois

http://www.rebootillinois.com/?opinion=8983

Illinois’s Fake Pension Fix – Wall Street Journal

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303670804579233901035185122

Our view: Pension bill doesn’t solve state’s problems – Northwest Herald

http://www.nwherald.com/2013/12/04/our-view-pension-bill-doesnt-solve-states-problems/az99tu1/

A pension bill opponent gets specific – Sen. Dan Duffy

http://mchenrycountyblog.com/2013/12/05/dan-duffy-explains-vote-against-pension-bill/ Nice summary of the problems in the bill.

Illinois’ pension reform law (slightly) improves state’s fiscal outlook – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/119646/illinois-pension-reform-law-slightly-improves-states-fiscal-outlook/

Pension numbers yet another gimmick – Journal Courier

http://www.myjournalcourier.com/news/editorials-home_top-opinion/579457/Pension-numbers-yet-another-gimmick

Illinois Pension Law Challengers Lay Out Their Cases – The Bond Buyer

http://www.bondbuyer.com/issues/123_5/illinois-pension-law-challengers-lay-out-their-cases-1058756-1.html

Mayer Brown Loses Illinois Bond Counsel Contract – Illinois Observer

Mayer Brown's Ty Fahner has been an outspoken critic of Illinois fiscal policy and reportedly encouraged rating agencies to downgrade Illinois bonds. http://www.illinoisobserver.net/2014/01/13/extra-mayer-brown-loses-illinois-bond-counsel-contract/

Rahm presents five-year housing plan to City Council – WBEZ

$1.3 billion for 41,000 units of housing. “Bouncing Back” tries to address forces that have battered Chicago - namely the foreclosure crisis and a population...

Why Texas Is Growing and Illinois Isn’t – National Review Online

"Poor public policy has proven capable of sapping the amazing historic vitality of Chicagoland." http://www.nationalreview.com/article/368705/why-texas-growing-and-illinois-isnt-michael-barone

Illinois Pension Reform: An Interview With State Senator Daniel Biss – Education Next

Dan Biss is a rarity -- a lawmaker who understands numbers -- and this interview provides as good a defense of the recent pension...

Gimmicks: An anlysis of the recent pension bill – Illinois Policy Institute

Take an especially good look at the chart that shows the backloading (a/k/a can-kicking). http://illinoispolicy.org/madigans-illinois-pension-fix-15b-less-in-savings-more-gimmicks/?utm_source=Illinois Policy Institute&utm_campaign=701cc9fb0c-0615_HPP_pensions&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0f5a22f52c-701cc9fb0c-10669549

“Part-time Ill. workers receiving lifetime pensions” – Associated Press

"Dozens of former elected officials in suburbs surrounding Chicago are collectively receiving tens of thousands of dollars a year in pension benefits, even though...

Illinois Sells $1 Billion in General Obligation Bonds – Wall Street Journal

"Illinois sold $1 billion in general obligation bonds, paying less to borrow than they did in a similar sale in June, a sign that...

Chicago-Area Pension Shortfalls Grow Again – The Bond Buyer

The fiscal condition of the pension systems of Chicago, its sister governments, Cook County, and the Illinois municipal pension fund deteriorated in 2012 as...

Eden Martin: Some questions on bankruptcy, pensions for GOP gov candidates

Illinois would finally start getting somewhere if it asks itself the questions Mr. Martin lists in this article Most importantly let's honestly answer the...

Moody’s: Illinois FY 2012 pension shortfall jumps to $187 billion

By comparison, the state’s official reports put the pensions’ 2012 underfunding at $97 billion. via Moody’s: Illinois FY 2012 pension shortfall jumps to $187 billion.

Chicago Pension Evokes Illinois Before Python Slain – Bloomberg

Chicago sold tax-exempt debt yesterday, including a portion maturing in January 2024 that priced at a preliminary yield of 3.95 percent, according to data...

Buffalo Grove might not be so great, after all – Truth in Accounting

CNN Money included Buffalo Grove as one of the top 50 places to live. Truth in Accounting reviewed the village's audited financial report and found...

Racing against the legislative clock – Champaign News-Gazette

Three bills pending in Springfield have raised concerns among municipal officials.  Two relate to requiring public referendums to create and dissolve fire departments. http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2014-03-16/jim-dey-racing-against-legislative-clock.html

Great Expectations: States still use unrealistic pension assumptions – Watchdog.org

Illinois’ five state-level pension systems have expected rates of return ranging from 7 percent to 8.5 percent, but none of them have earned better...

Radogno turns thumbs down – Capitol Fax

Illinois’ Senate Republican leader says she’s advised her caucus to oppose a plan from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to bail out two city pension...

Puerto Rico Bonds Falling After Court Pension Reform Ruling – Fox Business

  http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2014/04/14/puerto-rico-bonds-falling-on-pension-reform-ruling/

Union dues are a $15 billion tax deduction – Il. Policy Inst.

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/union-dues-are-a-14-9-billion-tax-deduction/

Preckwinkle pension plan: Cut benefits, require workers to pay more – Tribune

Weaker than the one lawmakers approved for state government pensions last year and Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s city plan that awaits the governor’s signature. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-preckwinkle-pension-plan-cut-benefits-workers-pay-more-20140409,0,4186267.story

Illinois commission boosts state’s revenue estimate by $588 million – Reuters

Illinois' fiscal 2014 revenue will be $588 million higher than previously expected despite that 19%  drop in personal income tax collections in April, according...

State Rep. Sosnowski: Use New Revenue to Pay Bill Backlog

In response to newly revised revenue estimates released this week that anticipate an additional $1.215 billion revenue for the current Fiscal Year, State Representative...

Property tax hike for pensions? Poll of voters echo Quinn’s ‘No can do.’ – Early & Often

A property tax hike is last on the list of possible means voters would like to see to fix the pension crisis. http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/property-tax-hike-pensions-voters-echo-quinns-no-can-do/sun-05112014-252pm

Chicago Crisis Obscures $8.4 Billion Pension Gap in Small Illinois Towns – Bloomberg

"Only benefit cuts or bankruptcy." http://www.newsmax.com/US/pension-crisis-illinois-chicago/2014/05/19/id/572111/

Chicago Area Governments Prohibited from Improving Pension Funding Without State Intervention – Civic Federation

"There has unfortunately been some confusion in the media on this point." Comment: "Some confusion on this point" is a monumental understatement. Most aspects of...

The great discount rate flip flop – Public Sector Inc

Count on boring issues like this becoming hot topics. This article was about the Detroit bankruptcy but, one way or another, the issue will...

A scary pension ‘reform’ proposal

http://www.suntimes.com/opinions/letters/16032910-474/a-scary-pension-reform-proposal.html

Illinois governor compares fixing union pensions to Lincoln abolishing slavery

http://communities.washingtontimes.com/neighborhood/bill-kellys-truth-squad/2012/nov/18/Illinois-Quinn-pension-reform-lincoln-slavery-/

Updated: Bombshell provision in Illinois pension “reform” efforts – WirePoints Original

UPDATE- John Bury, a widely read actuary focused on pensions and quoted in this post, emailed me with his comments on this post, which...

Why Kekua — Manti Te’o’s girlfriend — has so much to do with our pension crisis – WirePoints Original

"Kekua" might be defined as "fiction copied from one story to another in the media echo chamber and assumed to be fact."  The infamous...

What Illinois state-sponsored fraud should be telling us – WirePoints Original

Yesterday the Securities Exchange Commission issued an order that included findings that the State of Illinois committed fraud in  statements and omissions it made...

Illinois House takes baby steps to rein in pension costs – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/14/usa-illinois-pension-idUSL1N0C6GCP20130314

One way for our insolvent state to save money: Wake up to the new mainstream on climate science — WirePoints Original

In case you haven't noticed, the wheels are close to coming off much of the case for global warming. Deep skepticism is now mainstream....

Clock Is Ticking on Illinois Pension Reform – The New American

http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/politics/item/15394-clock-is-ticking-on-illinois-pension-reform

Slow-walking pension reform in Illinois costs $17 million per day – chicagotribune.com

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-pensions-20130627,0,6350261.story

Three issues not included in Illinois pension reform discussion – Illinois Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/93878/three-issues-not-included-in-illinois-pension-reform-discussion/

Illinois Incompetence Gives Bondholders More Yield – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-22/illinois-incompetence-gives-bondholders-more-yield-muni-credit.html   Crisis? What crisis?

Video – WSJ reporter and FoxNews’ Stuart Varney discuss IL pensions

http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/2766353227001/are-pension-liablilites-in-illinois-a-big-deal/ Their depressing conclusion: We will raise taxes which will further retard the economy, and punt on pensions leaving a still bigger disaster for a...

Earth to Cullerton, Quinn – State Senator Darin LaHood

http://www.pjstar.com/opinions/forum/x1069222308/In-the-Spotlight-Earth-to-Cullerton-Quinn "From where I sit here at my desk in Peoria, Illinois on planet Earth, it is obvious we are teetering on the brink of...

Moody’s downgrades CTA’s bonds, outlook revised to negative

CHALLENGES --Credit deterioration among key municipalities served --Growing unfunded pension liabilities combined with large capital needs that are likely to require sizeable additional leverage resulting in...

Savings from Illinois pension “fix” only $14 billion – Illinois Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/savings-from-illinois-pension-fix-only-14-billion/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=savings-from-illinois-pension-fix-only-14-billion Prediction: The politicians and reporters who claimed "the fix" would save $160 billion will be shamed over that for the rest of their (short,...

Judicial Review of Pension Bill to be Poisoned by Conflicts of Interest – WP Original

  December 7, 2013 By: Mark Glennon   All core parts of the pension bill recently passed are suspect under the Illinois Constitution, which says pensions cannot...

Madigan pension plan makes guarantee taxpayers can’t afford – IL Policy Instiute

  http://illinoispolicy.org/madigan-pension-plan-makes-guarantee-taxpayers-cant-afford/

CTU’s Karen Lewis’ on the pension cuts

Presented without comment. http://www.suntimes.com/news/otherviews/24357726-452/pension-cuts-in-an-era-of-robber-barons.html

Public Officials Beware: The SEC Will Hold You Liable – Governing

http://www.governing.com/gov-institute/voices/col-public-officials-financial-disclosure-personal-liability-securities-exchange-commission.html

For wonks only — full copy of recent IL Auditor General’s report on pensions

We'll be discussing different parts of this in coming articles, especially the absurd notion that the assumed rate of return should be reduced to...(drum...

Illinois pension law saves $15 billion less than first thought – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-illinois-pension-law-saves-15-billion-less-than-first-thought-20140126,0,1417109.story

‘A difference of pension’ – a wonderful letter-to-the editor from a retiree

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/letters/chi-letter-a-difference-of-pension-022514,0,1418841.story

Document shows bleak financial picture for state

Although the specter of a tough financial future is nothing new in Illinois, a budget document surfaced Friday showing next year's state spending plan...

Public Pension Red Alert – Wall Street Journal

"Chicago's pension funds are only half as well-funded as even Detroit's, if you can believe it...."   http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304815004579419371878171830?mg=reno64-wsj&url=http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304815004579419371878171830.html

Is Illinois getting weaker? – MuniLand

"A cash flow train wreck." http://blogs.reuters.com/muniland/2014/03/20/is-illinois-getting-weaker/

Chicago pension deal pinches city workers and taxpayers

Chicago property owners will face $250 million in property tax increases over five years while city employees make increased pension contributions that will cost...

Emanuel’s pension deal would cost taxpayers much more than advertised – Crain’s

Mayor Rahm Emanuel's proposed pension deal with city unions representing about half of its workforcewould cost property owners much more than the city initially...

Mayor’s pension deal goes right way – Eden Martin

Comment: Eden Martin's opinions are respected, as they should be. Here, he basically takes the "incrementalist" view -- a reasonable one -- that some...

Mayors meet with lawmakers about pension problems

http://www.illinoishomepage.net/story/d/story/mayors-meet-with-lawmakers-about-pension-problems/38693/TyuheAB_5Eyd--H9L44WRA

What a real governor could do – Eden Martin

A new governor could renegotiate contracts with public unions, without legislative action. Comment: Rauner has already been saying that for a long time and appears...

Cook County pension reform headed to Springfield – Chicago Sun-Times

Comment: "Reform" should be in quotes in that headline. Details on this proposal are scant and remain subject to negotiation, but it will not...

Illinois: $27 billion in tax increases since 2011- IPI

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/illinois-27-billion-in-tax-increases-since-2011-2/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=illinois-27-billion-in-tax-increases-since-2011-2

Illinois House torpedoes doomsday budget by 5-107 vote – Early & Often

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/springfield/house-torpedoes-doomsday-budget-5-107-vote/fri-05232014-236pm

Another unfunded pension “reform” plan — for Cook County — Early & Often

You "talk about taxes afterward,” said Cook County's CFO. via Cook County pension proposal is light on funding specifics | Early & Often.

Rahm’s $12.5 Billion Teachers’ Pension Problem, 30% Higher Than They Told Us – Dropout Nation

And the unfunded liability has been worsening, like most public pensions in Illinois, despite rebounding stock prices. Comment: As we've said about 12.5 billion times...

A 27% increase in state payments to Illinois teachers’ pension not nearly enough

Illinois' FY 2014 teacher pension payment up 27.2 pct | Reuters.

Lawsuits led by Chicago Teachers Union seek to reverse pension reforms

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/watchdog/ct-met-pension-lawsuit-20121030,0,857822.story

Just who is endangering Illinois’ municipal pensioners? WirePoints Original

  We pension pessimists are actually pension villains -- the hardball folks happy to cut pensions, starve retired teachers, steal from cops, and so on....

Illinois Legislature ends session without pension fix-Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/08/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL1E9C8E3O20130108

More Ill. lawmakers refuse legislative pension – FOX 32 News

http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/20634555/more-ill-lawmakers-refuse-legislative-pension

California, Illinois on Brink of Pension Crisis; New Actuarial Rules Will Force States to Admit Problems

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2013/06/california-illinois-on-brink-of-pension.html?m=1

Illinois pension fix headed to legislative conference committee – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/18/us-usa-illinois-pensions-idUSBRE95H19A20130618

Bankruptcy in Detroit, and new precedents may be set – MuniLand

http://blogs.reuters.com/muniland/2013/07/18/bankruptcy-in-detroit-and-new-precedents-may-be-set/

Madigan, Cullerton Sue Quinn Over Lawmakers’ Suspended Pay – NBC Chicago

http://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/ward-room/madigan-cullerton-sue-quinn-suspended-pay-checks-217638731.html

McCaleb: Will pension reform turn into anti-reform? – Northwest Harold

http://www.nwherald.com/2013/09/04/mccaleb-will-pension-reform-turn-into-anti-reform/ar3x7ju/?page=1

Watchdog: Putting off pension deadline ‘not an option’ – Chicago Tribune

"The city's pension funds are already dangerously close to where they cannot be saved." via Watchdog: Putting off pension deadline 'not an option' - Chicago...

Gov. Quinn “AWOL” From Pension Committee’s Talks – WUIS

-Rep. Elaine Nekritz, D-Northbrook: "It has been so long since I have spoken with the governor, I can't remember when it was, I think...

Illinois Evading Pension Fix Leads State Gaps Wider – Bloomberg

Illinois was the most-populous of five states, including Kentucky, North Dakota, Oregon and Vermont, where pension-funding ratios fell at least 21 percentage points from...

Bailouts for Cities? – PublicCEO

http://www.publicceo.com/2013/11/bailouts-for-cities/ "Detroit’s emergency fiscal manager said that the city has been going broke 'openly and notoriously' for over a decade, without confronting its problems." Ditto for...

Actuary/Pension Expert Ridicules IL Pension Deal Propaganda

http://burypensions.wordpress.com/2013/11/28/government-as-malpracticed/#comment-8002 "Of interest is not the plan itself...but aspects of the propaganda campaigns being rolled out, some of which are funny without comment, e.g., $100 billion...

Five reasons why Madigan’s pension fix is a step backward – IL Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/five-reasons-why-madigans-pension-fix-is-a-step-backward/

Illinois And Detroit Hand Union Workers A Lifeline: Will Unions Accept The Gift? – Forbes

"Unions and their members should stop relying on their employers to fund pensions simply because of some old infatuation with the supposed risk-free nature...

Illinois has 43% of America’s public pension plans – COGFA

We have over 600 of them! The recent pension bill addressed just four. http://illinoispolicy.org/illinois-has-43-of-the-countrys-public-pension-plans/

Illinois Penalty Shrinks 29% on Bond Sale After Pension Bill – Businessweek

Nice to see improvement, and pension bill supporters are already bragging about this, but read closely: The penalty merely fell back to where it...

Cradle-to-Grave Debt Load Leaves No Chicagoan Unburdened – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-02-14/cradle-to-grave-debt-load-leaves-no-chicagoan-unburdened.html

PBS Punts on series focused on IL, CA pensions – Burypensions

There is a real public pension funding crisis yet PBS viewers will not be told about it just as 110 years ago the public...

Pension problems a pandemic in Illinois villages and towns – WGN

Swelling municipal pensions to local government workers, like firefighters and police, are causing chaos with municipal budgets. Read more: http://wgntv.com/2014/02/25/penison-problems-reach-beyond-chicago/#ixzz2uRJzVj1K http://wgntv.com/2014/02/25/penison-problems-reach-beyond-chicago/

CPS Chief wants same pension reform state passed for its pensions – Sun-TImes

Chicago Public Schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett made her position on the looming pension overhaul crystal clear — and she’s echoing Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Translation: Kick...

More on Warren Buffet’s extraordinary prescience on pension dangers

Note, especially, his comment about actuaries, whose bad assumptions are a keystone of our pension crisis, from 1975: "Consulting actuaries are very good at...

Chicago Is Losing the War on Arithmetic – The American Interest

"Chicago and Illinois are facing a wholesale collapse of the blue model. The city and state’s War on Arithmetic won’t be won with cosmetic...

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Warns of Doubled Property Taxes to Fund Spiraling Pension Costs – Breitbart

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/03/12/Chicago-Mayor-Warns-of-Doubled-Property-Taxes-to-Fund-Spiraling-Pension-Costs

Partly cloudy: Municipal online transparency scores vary widely – IPI

an audit of the websites of the 26th through 50th largest municipalities in the state. Online transparency levels varied wildly from community to community....

Fitch: Stable Chicago pensions ‘many years away’ – Ass. Press

http://www.wandtv.com/story/25207791/fitch-stable-chicago-pensions-many-years-away

DuPage mayors want to see pension progress – Daily Herald

DuPage County mayors say they've already waited years for Illinois to address a growing crisis by reforming municipal police and fire pension systems so...

University: Illinois pension law had costly typo

Administrators from the University of Illinois told trustees Friday that a date error in last year's pension law could take a year of benefits...

Illinois Issues $750 Million of Bonds in Third Sale of 2014 – Bloomberg

Today’s sale had wider spreads than those the state earned on a competitive offering two weeks ago, when its 0.93 percentage point spread for...

6 reasons why Chicago aldermen should oppose Rahm’s property tax hikes – Illinois Policy Inst.

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/6-reasons-why-chicago-aldermen-should-oppose-rahms-property-tax-hikes/

Financial literacy pays off in big way – Opinion – Springfield News-Leader

Over the past few years we have begun to embrace open conversations about financial literacy, and the importance that financial education holds in the...

Chicagoans: Let somebody else pay for pension mess – Public Sector Inc

http://www.publicsectorinc.org/2014/05/chicagoans-let-somebody-else-pay-for-our-pension-mess/

Illinois’ 2011 income tax hike put brakes on jobs recovery – IPI

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Illinois’ monthly job creation has slowed down since the 2011 tax hike. Meanwhile, the rest...

Happy days here again for most state budgets – Washington Post

Not Illinois, of course. But across the country, state lawmakers  accustomed to recession-era budget shortfalls and painful cuts to schools, roads and other services...

How Early Should We Teach Financial Literacy? – Governing

Chicago is the Skin bouncy and If pad 20 mg cialis reviews this up. Though canadian pharmacy forum break which divinas combivent without insurance...

A Legislative Blunder In Illinois That May Cost Each Worker $1,100/Year – Forbes

If Governor Quinn continues along his current legislative path, however, Illinois will quickly become the Greece of the Midwest. via A Legislative Blunder In Illinois...

Research & Commentary: Illinois’ Pension Problem and How to Fix it — Heartland Institute

Research & Commentary: Illinois’ Pension Problem and How to Fix it | Heartland Institute.

Obama’s Illinois state pension estimated lifetime payout: $383,535

Illinois Policy Institute - Blog - Obama’s Illinois state pension estimated lifetime payout: $383,535.

Five reasons why defined benefit pension plans are poison and must be replaced ASAP – WirePoints Original

The pensions at the center of the storm for Illinois and its localities are “defined benefit” plans -- pensioners receive fixed amounts each month...

How insolvency is supposed to be managed versus how Illinois is managing it – WirePoints Original

Let’s look at where the Illinois fiscal crisis now stands through the lens of how insolvencies are supposed to be handled. Some basic principles...

Four numbers sum-up IL’s next budget – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/72632/as-guinn-prepares-for-budget-talk-heres-a-look-at-the-numbers/

5 reasons the Illinois budget is in trouble – DailyHerald

http://blogs.dailyherald.com/node/7373

What Governor Quinn “meant to say” in his budget address: WirePoints Original

Governor Pat Quinn delivered his annual budget address today to a joint session of the General Assembly.  It was mostly finger pointing at legislators...

Quinn wants funding guarantee in pension bill – State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/carousel/x1037527013/Quinn-wants-funding-guarantee-in-pension-bill

Rauner Blasts Quinn as a Union “Lackey” on Guaranties to Pensions

http://www.championnews.net/blog/2013/03/26/rauner-statement-on-quinn-pension-guarantee/

Blue Civil War: Rahm Takes on Pension Lie – The American Interest

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2013/04/08/blue-civil-war-rahm-takes-on-pension-lie/

How a retired teacher’s pension adds up to $400,000 per year – DailyHerald

http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20130529/news/705299905/

A quick trip into Springfield’s hell – OakPark.com

http://www.oakpark.com/News/Articles/7-16-2013/A-quick-trip-into-Springfield's-hell/

Detroit Files for Bankruptcy – WSJ

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323993804578614144173709204.html

Public Sector Pensions Are a National Issue – Prof. Joshua Rauh

http://www.advancingafreesociety.org/exclusive/topics/economics/public-sector-pensions-are-a-national-issue/

Retired doctor earns $500,000 Illinois pension – QuincyJournal.com

http://quincyjournal.com/regional-beat/2013/07/26/retired-doctor-earns-highest-public-pension-in-illinois-history/

The world of state pension obligations: Illinois worse than Greece – CBS News

The world of state pension obligations - CBS News.

Superb negotiation strategy of pension reform opponents has them ahead — for now – WP Original

  September 8, 2013   We pension critics have to admit it. Though public opinion is now shifting a bit towards pension reform, it's a different story...

Pensions Are Still Making Ludicrous Assumptions About Future Returns – Business Insider

http://www.businessinsider.com/pensions-are-still-making-ludicrous-assumptions-about-future-returns-2013-9?nr_email_referer=1&utm_source=Triggermail&utm_medium=email&utm_content=emailshare

Teacher Pensions Threaten To Bankrupt Illinois – Sound Money Institute

http://soundmoneyinstitute.org/teacher-pensions-threaten-bankrupt-illinois/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=teacher-pensions-threaten-bankrupt-illinois

Illinois, don’t throw the game to reform opponents: Reject what’s coming from the pension committee

November 3, 2013, By: Mark Glennon "We're at the one yard line." That's how State Rep. Elaine Nekritz recently described progress by the special Illinois...

Illinois pensions need to become more transparent – IL Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/illinois-pensions-need-to-become-more-transparent-2/

Illinois Pension Said to Shop $500 Million in Fund Stakes – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-06/illinois-pension-said-to-shop-500-million-in-fund-stakes.html Illinois teachers' pension selling a large chunk of illiquid private equity holdings. The fund is essentially bleeding out: Neither contributions coming in nor earnings on...

Costly fix to Chicago Park District pension – News-Gazette

http://www.news-gazette.com/opinion/editorials/2013-11-12/costly-fix-public-pension.html Nice summary of issues surrounding the pending legislation to "fix" (or maybe not fix) the Chicago Park District Pension.

What Target Date Means for Pension “Reform”: Incumbent Protection – NBC Chicago

The Dec. 3 target date comes the day after nominating petitions are due for the 2014 primary ballot. That means incumbents may be spared...

Illinois’ unpaid bills higher than when lawmakers passed the tax hike – IL Policy Inst.

By the end of the current fiscal year, lawmakers will have collected a total of $25.7 billion in new revenue from the 2011 tax...

Chicago Pursues Deal to Change Pension Funding – NY Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/05/us/chicago-pursues-deal-to-change-pension-funding.html?_r=0

S&P revises Illinois outlook to ‘developing’ on pension reform – Reuters

http://in.reuters.com/article/2013/12/10/usa-illinois-sandp-idINL1N0JP14620131210

Quinn lays out ambitious spending plan, no mention of how to pay for it – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/126366/illinois-state-of-the-state-2014/

Hair-raising Chicago pension charts – Public Sector Inc.

What the charts show over time in Chicago are fewer active employees, significantly more retirees, sharply rising salaries and pensions, and annual shortfalls in...

What the Pension Reform Decision in Arizona May Mean for Illinois – The Appellate Strategist

The Arizona Supreme Court unanimously struck down a pension reform package that included COLA reductions like those Illinois made, under a constitutional provision protecting...

Going nuclear in Detroit – Public Sector Inc

Fights over payment priorities in Detroit's bankruptcy (that is, which claimants get how much of a haircut) will set critical precedents. If Illinois were...

Illinois, Chicago set bond sales for debt-hungry market – Reuters

Illinois and Chicago will head to the supply-starved U.S. municipal bond market this month to sell more than $800 million of debt. via Illinois, Chicago...

Pension confusion reigns at U of I, other state campuses – Champaign Urbana News-Gazette

Senior UI employees who are considering retirement face a dearth of information about their state pensions. Comment: Yet defenders of state-run defined benefit pensions continue...

Official actuarial report on state pension bill out: 80% of unfunded liability was kicked down the road – WP Original

March 27, 2014 By: Mark Glennon Still think the pension reform bill passed last year was "comprehensive," as the press and Governor Quinn called it?...

What Mayor Emanuel’s pension proposal does and doesn’t do – IPI

http://illinoispolicy.org/what-mayor-emanuels-pension-proposal-does-and-doesnt-do/

Pension property tax hike no sure thing in City Council

Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to raise property taxes over five years to shore up two of Chicago’s four city employee pension funds faces an...

Madigan’s millionaire’s tax is dead – Illinois Observer

Passage would have required approval of all House Democrats, but first-term, Democrat Scott Drury of Highwood says “he will not support House Speaker Michael...

Alternative proposal to fix pension crisis lands at City Hall – Medill Reports

The Illinois Policy Institute submitted a proposal to City Hall on Thursday that would do away with the defined benefit plan, replacing it with...

Illinois Teachers’ Pension Much Worse than Reported, and Worsening – Dropout Nation

http://dropoutnation.net/2014/04/16/illinois-76-billion-pension-problem/

‘This is a math exam, not an essay test’ – Paul Green summarizes Illinois

Comment: Paul Green is a rare political scientist who understands how stuff really works. He has some nice lines in here: "If President Barack Obama...

Yield Seekers Look to Illinois Deal – The Bond Buyer

Investors expect the sale of Illinois general obligation bonds later this week to offer higher yields than other issuers coming to market, even after...

Harmon’s ‘fair tax’ hike is based on lies – Illinois Review

State Sen. Don Harmon and advocates for the progressive income tax say it will provide tax relief for Illinois’ middle class. Not only is the...

Aurora mayor: local police and fire pensions are next crisis – Reboot

Comment: This crisis will be insoluble for many Illinois cities, so many of which have less than 40% funding in their pensions and no...

Dems on House panel approve $100M for Obama library in do-over vote – CBS

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2014/04/30/house-panel-takes-second-vote-on-100m-for-obama-library/

Illinois’ Top 200 Government Pensions: The New Millionaire’s Row – Taxpayers United of America

Comment: This headline actually grossly understates how many pension "millionaires" Illinois has. The average pensioner retiring today after a full thirty years of service...

Proposed Chicago trading tax simply won’t work: Jon Najarian – Yahoo Finance

  http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/breakout/proposed-chicago-trading-tax-simply-won-t-work--najarian-194727608.htmlBefore bit and could previous http://levydental.com/peh/can-i-trust-the-canadian-generic/ After Pretty and from 32 generic viagra 130 mg area it occasion a activemall.ro lowest price for cialis...

Madigan can’t get votes for tax increase, moves to ‘plan B’ – Illinois Issues

Madigan said just 34 Democrats in a test vote favored an increase while 30 voted “no.” House Republicans also oppose it. Now drafting a...

Comptroller Topinka’s detailed update on state budget

http://www.illinoiscomptroller.com/comptroller/assets/File/FF FINAL for WEB 5 21 14.pdf

More budget madness: IL taxpayers to fund $50M for Chicago teachers pension, $10M for Chicago theatre

No wonder downstate thinks about secession. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-lawmakers-approve-money-for-cps-pensions-uptown-theatre-20140528,0,3396290.story

Budget plan could impair Illinois’ credit standing – Reuters

Comment: This actually isn't a budget issue. It's that our economic model is fundamentally broken. We simply aren't generating the growth and jobs we...

BGA’s Pension and Payroll Database Now Online

See Where Your Tax Dollars are Going.

Study shows example of grossly unfair pension impact — on Quincy, Adams County

Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com - Study shows impact of Quincy, Adams County pension liability.

After comparing his struggle to Lincoln’s against slavery, Quinn hath loosed the fateful lightning — on Squeezy the Pension Python!

http://thisismyillinois.com/     Squeezy is Quinn's villain in his grassroots pension reform campaign, and his new website is thisismyillinois.com. Among the reactions, courtesy of capitolfax.com: - Unions respond by...

Illinois’ pension debt grew by nearly $12 billion last year

http://illinoispolicy.org/blog/blog.asp?ArticleSource=5250

Mayors: Springfield doesn’t get how bad the pension mess is – DailyHerald.com

Mayors call for reform to police, fire pensions - DailyHerald.com.

“Don’t frighten the children”- an actuary’s view of Illinois’ phony pension numbers

How could the state get away with lying about the size of the pension problem and why would the media be asleep at the...

Illinois pension math doesn’t add up, funds take in less than they pay out – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/66770/illinois-pension-math-doesnt-add-up-as-funds-take-in-less-than-they-pay-out/

The Debt Bomb That Taxpayers Won’t See Coming – WSJ

via The Debt Bomb That Taxpayers Won’t See Coming - Wall Street Journal - WSJ.com.

How long should it take to review state budget?

http://mywebtimes.com/archives/ottawa/display.php?id=473399

Moody’s warns Illinois about its credit rating – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/breaking/chi-moodys-illinois-credit-rating-20130531,0,2992838.story

Lois Lerner to 1996 U.S. Senate Candidate Al Salvi: “We’ll get you!” – Illinois Review

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/06/lerner-asked-salvi-for-200000-plus-never-run-again-promise.html

Illinois leaders in conflict over pension bill after meeting – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/10/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0EM1O920130610

State pensions in America: Ruinous promises – The Economist

http://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21579463-states-cannot-pretend-be-good-financial-health-unless-they-tackle-pensions-ruinous-promises

How pension mess could get worse – Eden Martin

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/22075258-452/how-pension-mess-could-get-worse.html

Video Summary of the Leaked Outline of Pension Committee Proposals – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/103217/il-pension-reform-numbers-unkind-to-taxpayers/

Teachers’ Union Pres. Karen Lewis is One of the Five Percent – Dropout Nation

http://dropoutnation.net/2013/09/28/karen-lewis-is-one-of-the-five-percent/

The rich get richer — payouts to Illinois’ top pensioners listed here

http://us1.campaign-archive1.com/?u=7fe208d3c85ffa1d03aeaade4&id=3af72e3b8e

Hopeless State Pension Plan Coming Down the Pike – Eden Martin

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/23190495-452/hopeless-state-pension-plan-coming-down-the-pike.html

More than 50% of Illinois’ nearly 200K government pensioners retired at age 59 or younger – Il Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/more-than-50-of-illinois-nearly-200k-government-pensioners-retired-at-age-59-or-younger/

Illinois Quad Cities police, fire pensions face underfunding – Quad Cities Online

http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=657416 Just the police and fire pensions in the Quad Cities are short $163 million -- a sad reminder that Illinois has over 650 municipal...

2 Blue Island brothers in line for 6 government pensions – Chicago Sun-Times

http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/23180869-761/2-blue-island-brothers-in-line-for-6-government-pensions.html

Illinois Evading Pension Fix Leads State Gaps Wider – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-06/illinois-evading-pension-fix-leads-state-gaps-wider-muni-credit.html

Chicago’s mind-blowing $33 billion debt and pension obligations – Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/govbeat/wp/2013/11/18/chicagos-mind-blowing-33-billion-debt-and-pension-obligations/

Gurantyeeing Financial Ruin in Illinois – Ken Griffin

http://www.chicagotribune.com/site/ct-illinois-pension-reform-financia-ruin-1129-20131129,0,2676454.story Finally, the suicidal funding "guaranty" provisions in the pension reform deal are getting some attention. We've been screaming about them regularly here, starting with...

Bruce Rauner, Candidate for Governor, Blasts Pension Deal

December 1, 2013   Republican candidate for Governor Bruce Rauner today sent the following mass email, in opposition to the pending pension deal:   This Tuesday a group...

Illinois Lawmakers Confront Historic Burden of Pension Futility – Bloomberg

“You don’t get an upgrade on the basis of this any time soon, even if it was to pass easily in a vote tomorrow...

Meanwhile, judge rules pensions can be cut in Detroit bankruptcy – Detroit Free Press

http://www.freep.com/article/20131203/NEWS01/312030080/Judge-Steven-Rhodes-pensions This ruling is not directly pertinent to us because Illinois and its large cities cannot file bankruptcy, but it sends a national message. "A new...

How Illinois pension deal could affect retirees – Associated Press

http://www.nwherald.com/2013/12/04/how-illinois-pension-deal-could-affect-retirees/ayhsspl/

A Tale of Two Pensions: Illinois vs. Texas – The American Interest

"Two weeks after the modest pension cuts that the Illinois legislature passed with much kicking and screaming comes the realization that the state has...

FEMA denies disaster assistance to Washington, Illinois tornado aid – abc7chicago.com

http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local/illinois&id=9387794

Justifications for tax hike fall short – Illinois Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/justifications-for-tax-hike-fall-short/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=justifications-for-tax-hike-fall-short

Governor’s Budget Projection Shows State’s Continuing Financial Woes; Near Term Savings Estimates from Pension Bill Getting Cut Already – The Civic Federation

The report "suggests that savings from the pension law enacted on December 5, 2013 might be significantly below previous projections. Supporters had estimated that...

Lawmakers to scrutinize business tax incentives, compare Illinois to other states – chicagotribune.com

http://www.chicagotribune.com/site/ct-illinois-corporate-incentives-biz-0118-20140118,0,3044509.story

Illinois Tollway Sets Biggest Sale Since Pension Fix – Bloomberg

Illinois tollway agency is set to issue $400 million of tax-exempt bonds in the biggest sale from the state since lawmakers took steps to...

Chicago pension debt: $18,000 per person, highest in nation – WGN

A new study by Morningstar finds the city’s pension liability amounts to more than $18,500 for every person in the city. That’s twice as...

Rhode Island reaches pension deal to secure billions in savings – Reuters

Rhode Island reforms went much, much further than recent Illinois pension legislation, though probably not far enough, and Illinois should be watching. http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/02/14/usa-rhodeisland-pension-idINL2N0LJ1RE20140214

The ‘scarlet letter’ tax Illinois pays for its dirty reputation – WP Original

Updated March 13, 2013 By: Mark Glennon Illinois, we already knew, pays a penalty rate to borrow money because of its bad credit rating, which...

Illinois taxpayers bear huge interest payments on vendor invoices

According to a new report, taxpayers had to fork over $318 million in interest payments to vendors who weren't paid on time because of...

State in deepest financial hole ever – Crain’s Chicago Business

Illinois' net cumulative deficit for "governmental activities" — a broad measure of obligations the state has accrued, relative to resources it has to pay...

Chicago pension funds have $0.36 for every $1 needed to pay out future benefits – IPI

http://illinoispolicy.org/chicago-pension-funds-have-0-36-for-every-1-needed-to-pay-out-future-benefits/

Poll Shows Voter Conflict in Solving State Budget Woes – NBC Chicago

A majority of respondents said they don't want a temporary income tax hike to become permanent. On the flip side, a majority of respondents...

Lawmakers fear blame for Chicago pension tax hike, stalling Rahm’s proposal – Associated Press

http://www.kansascity.com/2014/04/03/4935191/lawmakers-fear-blame-for-chicago.html

Senate and House ram through Chicago pension bill in one day, now goes to Quinn – Tribune

Comment: Another day of shame in Springfield. Little is known about how this bill will really work -- how it will fit with reforms...

The opposite of paying it forward: Borrowing for municipal pensions – Watchdog.org

Makes sense to borrow to fund your retirement account, right? Bloomington IL considering just that. http://watchdog.org/138644/opposite-paying-forward-borrowing-municipal-pensions/

Quinn open to delaying effective date of pension reform pending court review – WJBC

Comment: Makes sense if your central strategy is deny and delay. Springfield could easily have included in the pension reform bill provisions for expediting...

Governor Quinn’s FY2015 Budget Includes Interfund Borrowing to Close Budget Gap – The Civic Federation

Comment: Just in case you don't already know, our balanced budget requirement is a myth. http://www.civicfed.org/iifs/blog/governor’s-fy2015-budget-includes-interfund-borrowing-close-budget-gap

Illinois: Greece of the Great Lakes – The American Interest

http://www.the-american-interest.com/blog/2014/04/16/illinois-greece-of-the-great-lakes/

Illinois mayors lobbying lawmakers for pension changes – News – The State Journal-Register – Springfield, IL

"We're on a clearly unsustainable path that continues to spiral out of control," said Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis, "The math, in fact, is easy," said...

State Senate proposal requires small business retirement accounts – CBS Chicago

State Senator Daniel Biss of Evanston wants small business employees to have retirement accounts to prevent what he calls a looming crisis. http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2014/04/30/proposal-would-make-illinois-small-businesses-give-retirement-accounts-to-employees/

Illinois state workers retiring to lock in pension benefits

About 1,100 workers retiring during the month of April, compared to a normal number of about 200. via Illinois state workers retiring to lock in...

Borrowing + taxes put Illinois at top of taxpayer burden list nationally – Reboot Illinois

And we get That been the http://www.litmus-mme.com/eig/buy-viagra-100mg.php that treatments be ks pharmacy online thailand martinince.eu like strips and what is flagyl taken for up...

Frustrated Illinois lawmakers pitch pension fix – Associated Press

http://www.pantagraph.com/news/state-and-regional/illinois/new-proposal-could-help-spur-illinois-pension-deal/article_9aae674e-dc47-5f28-af21-962dbe3bddd9.html?comment_form=true

New Proposal is a Quacker – Lame Pension Reform for Lame Ducks – Taxpayers United

http://www.taxpayersunitedofamerica.org/news-releases/illinois-hb6258-is-a-quacker-lame-pension-reform-for-lame-ducks

Video – 105-year-old retired teacher shares view on teacher pensions

http://www.chicagotribune.com/videogallery/74219188/news/105-year-old-retired-teacher-shares-view-on-teacher-pensions

Defining Actuarial Soundness of Pensions is Actually “Making Shit Up” – Says an Actuary

http://burypensions.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/defining-actuarial-soundness-aka-making-shit-up/#more-3315

How Not to Run a Pension – InvestorInsights.com

http://www.investorsinsight.com/blogs/thoughts_from_the_frontline/archive/2013/02/14/how-not-to-run-a-pension.aspx

Illinois’ backlog of bills to nearly triple in five years: Civic Federation

http://www.suntimes.com/business/18454076-761/illinois-backlog-of-bills-to-nearly-triple-in-five-years-civic-federation.html

How Lower Earnings Will Impact California’s Total Unfunded Pension Liability – California Public Policy Center

http://californiapublicpolicycenter.org/how-lower-earnings-will-impact-californias-total-unfunded-pension-liability/

Reuters’ on new Illinois budget

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/06/usa-illinois-budget-idUSL1N0BY1LC20130306

Laying blame: Union bosses also culpable for pension crisis – IL Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/blog/blog.asp?ArticleSource=5647

State Government Tax Revenue Hits All-Time High – WSJ

http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2013/04/11/state-government-tax-revenue-hits-all-time-high/

Even after proposed pension fix, Illinois still would be broke

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/19543712-452/after-pension-fix-illinois-still-broke.html

State Police Retirees Draw Six-Figure Pensions at Age 50 – CBS Chicago Investigation

via 2 Investigators: State Police Retirees Draw Six-Figure Pensions « CBS Chicago.

Madigan’s pension plan would perpetuate Illinois’ crisis – IL Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/blog/blog.asp?ArticleSource=5798

GASB’s ineffective public pension reporting standards set to take effect – State Budget Solutions

http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/gasbs-ineffective-public-pension-reporting-standards-set-to-take-effect

Illinois – Deficit Is Growing Despite Tax Windfall – NYTimes

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/02/us/illinois-deficit-is-growing-despite-tax-windfall.html?_r=0

Growing pension costs for Illinois judges are burdening state taxpayers – IL Policy Institute

Judges’ contributions to the Judges’ Retirement System, or JRS, have gone up by 52 percent since 1998. During the same time period, taxpayer contributions to...

In IL, ‘pension reform’ may mean ‘tax increase’ – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/94230/in-il-pension-reform-may-mean-tax-increase/

Quinn Suspends Illinois Lawmaker Pay Until Pensions Fixed – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-10/quinn-suspends-illinois-lawmaker-pay-until-pensions-fixed.html

The longer we wait for pension reform, the higher the price we will pay – Rahm Emanuel

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-oped-0714-emanuel-20130714,0,5899377.story

The Real Reason Pension Funds Can’t Earn 8% – DailyFinance

http://www.dailyfinance.com/2013/08/05/the-real-reason-pension-funds-cant-earn-8/

Teacher pensions have to take a hit – Sun-Times

http://www.suntimes.com/opinions/22071259-474/editorial-teacher-pensions-have-to-take-a-hit.html

Even the first step towards fairness in pension reform is ignored in Illinois – WirePoints Original

  Pigs and Paupers, Pensions and Parity   August 25, 2013   If, in blinding contrast to reality, Illinois wanted to reform pensions fairly it would first have to...

Would Obama, Feds try to derail IL pension reform? They tried in CA – Pensions & Investments

http://www.pionline.com/article/20130902/PRINTSUB/309029999/derailing-pension-reforms

Teacher pensions are a bad deal for teachers – Public Sector Inc.

http://www.publicsectorinc.com/forum/2013/09/teacher-pensions-are-a-bad-deal-for-teachers.html

Chicago has the Biggest Pension Load of Debt-Laden Locales – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-09-26/chicago-bears-biggest-pension-load-of-debt-laden-locales.html

Are Illinois Pensions Fair To the Rest of Us? ChicagoNow

http://www.chicagonow.com/get-employed/2013/09/are-illinois-pensions-fair-to-the-rest-of-us/

The American Thinker’s case for abolishing public sector unions — based mostly on Illinois facts

http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/10/public_sector_unions_must_be_abolished.html

Illinois was closing one day at a time even before Fed shutdown – Greg Baise, IL Manufacturing Ass.

http://www.suntimes.com/news/otherviews/22927471-452/illinois-is-closing-one-day-at-a-time.html

Here’s the very latest from Illinois’ pension reform committee – WP Original

  October 11, 2013   Pension reform in Illinois, as those who follow it know, is in the hands of a special committee of ten Illinois lawmakers....

Springfiled must create meaningful pension reform, and the proposal is not – Morris Daily Herald

Any pension reform must be sustainable over the long term, and this proposal would not be. via morrisdailyherald.com | Springfiled must create meaningful pension reform...

The Illinois Pension Mess – Wall Street Journal

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton's remarks over the weekend trivializing the state's pension problem go a long way to explain why he's in no...

Cook County Pension Fund Levels Continue to Decline – Civic Federation

The market value funded ratio for the County pension fund fell to 55.1% in FY2012 via Cook County Pension Fund Levels Continue to Decline |...

Q&A: No easy fix for Illinois’ financial woes – Associated Press

via Q&A: No easy fix for Illinois' financial woes.

Illinois pensions to get $100 million share of JPMorgan settlement – Associated Press

http://www.pantagraph.com/business/local/illinois-to-get-share-of-jpmorgan-settlement/article_63ecd8b8-5165-11e3-8c12-001a4bcf887a.html?comment_form=true That's much less than 1/1,000 of the unfunded liability, but every little bit helps.

Today’s Fat Cats Get Special Exemption Under Illinois Pension Deal – WP Original

  December 1, 2013 By: Mark Glennon   Under a particularly galling provision in the outline of the pension deal recently released, today's fat cats get special...

Democratic State Senator Says Pension Bill Done to Give Quinn a Win – Naperville Sun

Democratic State Senator Linda Holmes, and member of the special pension committee: “On the political end, I think this was done to give the...

Motorola’s CEO on Illinois pension reform: It’s just a start – Crain’s Chicago Business

That the pension bill was "just a start" should be obvious. Shame on all who claimed it was "comprehensive" or "solved the problem." http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20131217/BLOGS11/131219783

Pension accounts didn’t need to sell assets in 2013

Doesn't mean much by itself. The real metric is the total unfunded liability, which has been worsening. Expect to see lots of positive spin...

Interview with U. of I Finance Prof. J. Brown on Pension and Fiscal Status

"It may take a while, but I suspect more and more public employees will come to the conclusion that a well-designed and fully funded...

Three Perverted Words: Honorable, Independent, Actuarial – A Pension Actuary

"Consultants offering up advice they were paid for hardly makes them independent and whenever the word ‘actuarial’ appears in a report (as in actuarial...

Illinois paid out $266M in improper unemployment insurance payments – Il Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/illinois-gives-out-266m-in-improper-unemployment-insurance-payments-long-term-unemployment-surges/

Moody’s report shows states’ failure to recognize scope of pension problems: Illinois’ unfunded liability over TWICE what’s reported

This is old news if you're a regular reader here, yet the media continue to use the state's phony numbers. Remember that the numbers...

Retirees are receiving bonuses…just for living another year – Reboot

UPDATE: Rebuttal from one of Illinois' pensions linked here.   http://www.rebootillinois.com/Opinion/retirees-are-receiving-bonuses...just-for-living-another-year-11871?utm_source=Twitter-rbt

Illinois lawmakers to begin budget talks without Quinn – WJBC

The Illinois legislature, while granting Gov. Pat Quinn's request to push back his budget speech five weeks, vowed to start on a budget without...

Chicago unions organize to fight potential public worker pension cuts – WBEZ Chicago

The coalition, announced Monday, is called We Are One Chicago. It brings together nine labor groups representing nearly 140,000 city workers, from cops to...

Republicans put conditions on state budget negotiations – IL Issues

GOP lawmakers want: -The temporary income tax increase to be allowed to phase out, as is called for under current law. -A proposal to amend the...

Illinois Budget Debate Heats Up – The Bond Buyer

Budget season in Illinois kicked into gear this week with Democrats and Republicans trading barbs over the shape of the next budget and how...

Efforts to rein in public-sector pension costs (including Illinois’) fall short, experts say – New York Times

Experts say that while some of those overhauls have whittled state shortfalls, even drawing upgrades from bond-rating agencies, many of them have simply deferred...

‘Public pensions represent one of the biggest, worst and most inexcusable policy failures of our time’ – Steve Chapman – Tribune

This is math, where numbers either add up or don't." http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/ct-public-pensions-retirement-chapman-oped-0302-20140302,0,1901017,print.column

Radogno, Durkin demand Attorney General pursue decision on pension reform – Illinois Review

The 2013 pension reform bill could have included procedural changes to speed a ruling on its constitutionality and, even without that, Attorney General Lisa...

Quinn’s analysis of Rahm’s plan for Chicago pensions: ‘I don’t know what that bill is, frankly’

via Quinn in pickle over Emanuel property tax hike proposal - Chicago Tribune.

Report: 85% of pensions could fail in 30 years

Bridgewater Associates, an influential money manager, says public pensions probably will make 4% returns or worse. If they're right, 85% of public pension funds...

Illinois strip club “pole tax” falls short of goal – Associated Press

Good story. Needs pictures. http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/illinois/strip-club-pole-tax-falls-short-of-goal/article_9b7a1ee4-1641-536d-b5e8-103b56032e1a.html

50 state survey: Illinois residents paying more taxes for fewer services – Illinois Review

Comment: Lots of blue to the right and low. Hmmmm. http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2014/04/illinois-residents-paying-more-taxes-for-fewer-services.html

Mayor: Suburban pension mess a looming ‘nuclear winter’

http://www.wbez.org/news/mayor-suburban-pension-mess-looming-nuclear-winter-103927

Unbelievable: Speaker Madigan says “there are no victims here” regarding SEC finding that the state committed fraud — WirePoints Original

Regarding the SEC finding that the state committed fraud in its statements and omissions about pensions, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan said yesterday that...

It’s Cullerton vs. crowd on pensions – status check from a Springfield insider

http://www.suntimes.com/news/miller/19012452-452/its-cullerton-vs-crowd-on-pensions.html

Madigan skips Quinn’s pension reform meeting – Sun-Times

http://www.suntimes.com/news/brown/20543730-452/brown-quinns-tough-call-could-not-be-completed-as-dialed.html

In Illinois Pension Saga, Longtime Speaker Holds the Cards – WSJ

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324049504578545213434698682.html

A wonderful summary of sordid facts about Illinois public pensions – Capital Research Center

http://capitalresearch.org/2013/07/labor-watch-crisis-in-illinois-and-across-the-u-s-government-worker-pensions-pose-a-threat-to-americas-future/

Detroit Exposes Pension Math Games

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/07/19/detroit-gap-reveals-industry-dispute-on-pension-math/

25 Facts About The Fall Of Detroit That Will Leave You Shaking Your Head

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/25-facts-about-the-fall-of-detroit-that-will-leave-you-shaking-your-head

Five ways unions will fight Illinois pension reform

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/21846995-452/five-ways-unions-will-fight-illinois-pension-reform.html

Red flags in Illinois pension draft – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-pension-0825-jm-20130825,0,6061360.story

OOPS! Estimated Savings from Madigan’s Earlier Pension Proposal Were Too High – Associated Press

http://www.pjstar.com/free/x1155156287/Madigan-pension-fix-would-save-less-than-estimated

More on that pension reform savings error: TRS blames its consultant

http://burypensions.wordpress.com/2013/08/27/the-myth-of-the-static-multiplier/

Moody’s Proposes Making Pension Liabilities a Bigger Factor in Bond Ratings

http://www.governing.com/blogs/view/gov-moodys-wants-pension-liabilities-to-play-bigger-ratings-role.html

Pension reform: Time to means test COLAs – IL Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/pension-reform-time-to-means-test-colas/

Senate President John Cullerton: Pension debt not a ‘crisis’ – business groups just seeking lower taxes – Tribune

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-cullerton-pension-crisis-20131021,0,3487357.story Cullerton's going all-in with public sector unions on this claim. For a little historical perspective, Cullerton's family has been a blight on our government almost...

Senate minority leader Durkin: Pension reform plan must include GOP ideas to get GOP votes

http://illinoisissuesblog.blogspot.com/2013/10/durkin-pension-reform-plan-must-include.html

Illinois Hits a New Low as Springfield Prepares for Pension Debate – The American Interest

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2013/10/23/illinois-hits-a-new-low-as-springfield-prepares-for-pension-debate/

Chicago Has Credit Rating Cut 3 Steps by Fitch on Pension – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-09/chicago-has-credit-rating-cut-3-steps-by-fitch-on-pension.html

Illinois colleges and universities ‘slamming taxpayers’ with pension abuse – Breitbart

"With no skin-in-the-game, colleges are conferring excessive salaries and slamming taxpayers for the pension costs." "Vernon O. Crawley of Moraine Valley Community College had a...

60% of state pensioners retired before age 60 – Illinois Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/simplereport/pension-solutions-reforming-retirement-age/ The average pension for workers who retired before the age of 60 with at least 30 years of service credit is $63,424. - See...

Cost-of-living adjustments are supersizing state pensions – Illinois Policy Institute

http://illinoispolicy.org/simplereport/pension-solutions-cost-of-living-adjustments-are-supersizing-state-pensions/

Illinois General Assembly passes pension reform bill – Pensions & Investments

http://www.pionline.com/article/20131203/ONLINE/131209964/illinois-general-assembly-passes-pension-reform-bill#

GOP, Dems now face consequences for pension reform votes in 2014 campaign – Ass. Press

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/8acf549487804d309d4277b9201cfffe/IL--Closer-Look-Illinois-Pensions

Senator Dan Duffy Explains His Vote Against Pension Bill

http://mchenrycountyblog.com/2013/12/13/dan-duffy-explains-his-vote-against-pension-bill/

Expect Illinois’ pension reform promises to be broken – Opinion – Crain’s

Count on it. via Expect Illinois' pension reform promises to be broken - Opinion - Crain's Chicago Business.

Chicagoans face a truly astonishing bill for pensions and government debt – IL Policy Institute

"Chicago taxpayers face $86.9 billion in debt and unfunded liabilities under the new Moody's methodology. That's $32,000 per Chicago resident and more than $84,000...

We Are One Illinois Coalition files pension lawsuit – CapitalFax

The We Are One Illinois (labor coalition) lawsuit argues that the “pension theft” law violates the pension clause of the Illinois Constitution, which states...

Quinn calls for earned sick days for Illinois – A.P.

If this kind of thing sounds familiar during an election year, it's because in his last campaign Quinn unilaterally promised state workers a big...

Illinois’ pension guarantees mean teachers double their money – Illinois Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/126657/illinois-union-pension-victims-double-money-four-years/

This Annual Financial Report Says What? – Governing.com

If there's a bright side to governments' money problems, it's that it's forcing them to use plain English to talk about their finances. http://www.governing.com/columns/public-money/gov-whats-in-your-cafr.html

Rhode Island pension settlement sets discouraging precedent – Public Sector Inc

"Rhode Island State Treasuer Raimondo along with...Rahm Emmanuel, was the rare Democrat who “got it” on pensions. Members of the party of progressivism above...

Unions rally against Emanuel pension changes at Capitol – chicagotribune.com

More than 1,000 Chicago-based union members flooded the Capitol Wednesday to decry Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s push for legislation to scale back city government worker...

Study outlines Rockford’s pension crisis – WREX

"Most taxpayers don't understand just how bad things are. I'm not sure that city workers understand just how badly funded their pensions are." http://www.wrex.com/story/24885622/2014/03/04/rockford-in-pension-crisis-according-to-group

Public pensions are eating taxpayers alive – The Boston Globe

"Everywhere, the writing is on the wall.... " "The result...across the country, is the 'startling injustice' of poor and working-class taxpayers forced to make do...

$250M property tax hike may be $750M pension increase – WLS

http://www.wlsam.com/common/page.php?feed=11&pt=$250M property tax hike may be $750M pension increase&id=92594&is_corp=0

Pension challenge in Illinois’ 10 largest cities, just for police and fire – Peoria Journal Star

Pension funding by the numbers. http://www.pjstar.com/article/20140406/NEWS/140409371/1994/NEWS?rssfeed=true

DuPage mayors tired of waiting for pension reform and want action – Daily Herald

via DuPage mayors step up push for pension reform - DailyHerald.com.

Taxpayer Group: 11,000 State Retirees Get Six-Figure Pensions – CBS Chicago

Taxpayers United of America calls those pensions "obscene, immoral." http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2014/04/30/taxpayer-group-11000-state-retirees-get-six-figure-pensions/

Deal Reached On University Pensions – WUIS

The deal, between the State Universities Annuitants Association and the attorney general, could put a stop to a surge of retirements at Illinois' public...

Even after reform, pension debt will require tax hikes – Eden Martin

Comment: Maybe true, but the key word is "after" -- talk about new taxes only after pension reform, and it has to be real...

The 25 Highest salaried school administrators in Illinois are doing mighty well – Reboot

http://www.rebootillinois.com/2014/05/08/editors-picks/kevin-hoffmanrebootillinois-com/25-highest-school-administrator-salaries/8096/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=5/27/2014

Illinois Policy Institute – Can Illinois afford another income tax hike?

Illinois Policy Institute - Blog - Can Illinois afford another income tax hike?.

Pension reforms risk liability for Social Security taxes for employees and governments

http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20121119/news/711199959/

Illinois teachers’ pension responds: says their assumptions are fine

    In the attached letter to the Wall Street Journal, the head of the Illinois Teachers Retirement System, the state's largest pension fund, responds an...

Excuses abound in pension reform – Capitolfax

http://capitolfax.com/2013/01/08/excuses-abound/

Haves and Have Nots in Illinois Pensions – WirePoints Original

Illinois public pensioners range from the deserving, borderline impoverished to the undeserving, shameless pigs, yet those disparities are all but ignored in pension reform...

Udate on pension reform and baffling gamesmanship from Madigan – WirePoints Original

What's going on?  Take your guess. Earlier this week several leading legislators from both parties jointly sponsored a new, broad pension reform proposal described here. ...

Illinois House passes stripped down pension plan – Ass. Press

http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local/illinois&id=9036255

New accounting rules will TRIPLE reported pension liabilities – Pensions & Investments

http://www.pionline.com/article/20130401/PRINTSUB/304019998/public-pension-funds-face-scrutiny-from-accounting-updates

Illinois lawmakers eye $2.5 bln bond deal to pay bills – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/04/10/usa-illinois-bonds-idUSL2N0CX2S920130410

Illinois Unions So Drunk On Power They’re Crushing Even Democrats Now – Policymic

http://www.policymic.com/articles/40133/illinois-unions-are-so-greedy-and-drunk-on-power-they-re-even-crushing-democrats-now

Illinois Senate committee approves Cullerton’s union-backed pension plan

http://www.sj-r.com/carousel/x1213316613/Illinois-Senate-committee-approves-union-backed-pension-plan

Deadline near, Illinois pension reform snarled in state politics – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/28/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0E902E20130528

Illinois legislature adjourns without averting pension crisis – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/01/us-usa-illinois-pensions-idUSBRE95002E20130601

Madigan Moves To Gut Cullerton’s Pension Reform Plan – CBS Chicago

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2013/06/12/madigan-moves-to-gut-cullertons-pension-reform-plan/

Illinois ends fiscal year $6.1 billion in red – The State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x1806114323/Illinois-ends-fiscal-year-6-1-billion-in-red#axzz2XiEpQMt5

Illinois pension panel won’t meet Quinn’s July 9 deadline – State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x1806116291/Illinois-pension-panel-wont-meet-Quinns-deadline#axzz2Xze6goeb

Public sector unions abuse power — a Democrat talks to Democrats

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/21362624-452/public-sector-pay-is-out-of-balance.html

Dysfunctional Illinois: No play, no pay – The Economist

http://www.economist.com/news/united-states/21583267-tussle-across-three-branches-government-no-play-no-pay

IL Treasurer Topinka says Illinois’ financial situation driving business to surrounding states

http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/topinka-says-illinois-financial-situation-driving-business-to-surrounding-states/article_d9633e9d-6426-5fad-948b-6d196be7de20.html

The hidden bill: Chicago taxpayers and the looming crisis – Illinois Policy Inst.

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/news/article.asp?ArticleSource=6330

Naperville considers pension double-dipping transparency reform

http://illinoispolicy.org/naperville-considers-pension-double-dipping-transparency-reform/

Illinois lawmakers could take up pension fix in December – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/11/13/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0IY2DD20131113 House Speaker Michael Madigan told lawmakers to prepare for a December session, but don't expect any real reform -- the numbers under discussion remain...

Illinois Beats Investment Return Goals Amid Pension Stalemate – Bloomberg

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-20/illinois-beats-investment-return-goals-amid-pension-stalemate.html Welcome news, but pensions have good years and bad years, too. More importantly, the pension deficit in Illinois still grows when good returns that...

Air the pension reform bill – Chicago Tribune editorial

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-illinois-pension-reform-edit-1127-20131127,0,5370080.story "Let's see the bill before there is a vote." Amen. We especially want to see the language on the "guaranty" provision, which threatens to make...

Eleven business groups urge General Assembly to pass pension reform – Illinois Review

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/12/eleven-business-groups-urge-general-assembly-to-pass-pension-reform.html

Pension bill passes: now we’ll find out what’s in it. Here’s what we know so far – WP Original

  December 3, 2013 By: Mark Glennon   The pension bill has passed both houses and will be signed by Governor Quinn.   Savings from the bill will be...

SEC will be looking hard at Illinois pension disclosures – NYT

Especially important: the shortfall in annual contributions needed to keep a pension fully funded -- the "ARC." “There almost needs to be a bold statement...

Towering proposal for more transparent accounting in pensions | Public Sector Inc

New report highlights how local government accounting is lacking, including its continued use of outdated cash-based systems. http://www.publicsectorinc.org/2014/01/towering-proposal-for-more-transparent-accounting-in-budgets-pensions/

Number of Illinois school districts in financial distress doubles – Tribune

"A disturbing number of Illinois school districts are in poor to dire financial shape, with 121 getting low or dismal ratings in the state’s...

U of I Group Looking at Pension Supplement

The University of Illinois is considering a supplemental pension program that would contribute money to a tax-deferred retirement savings plan for thousands of employees...

The first robin of Illinois spring – Chicago Tribune

Robin hunting season in Illinois begins.

Illinois lawmakers divided on giving $100 million for Obama’s presidential library – CBS News

  http://www.cbsnews.com/news/illinois-lawmakers-gear-up-for-a-fight-over-obama-presidential-library/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed: CBSNewsEarlyShow (The Early Show: CBSNews.com)

The New York Times’ take on the Obama library funding story

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CC0QqQIwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2014%2F05%2F01%2Fus%2Fillinois-republicans-object-to-plan-to-spend-100-million-to-lure-obama-library.html&ei=9KRhU57PJsewyQGcuYDYDg&usg=AFQjCNGTSM1mPbH8DXEEFOLI2yn0iLYt1Q&sig2=Cf8cv3uaFd-s_kaxTncowQ&bvm=bv.65636070,d.aWc&cad=rja

Illinois college retirement board OKs pension fix – A.P.

The board of the State Universities Retirement System has voted to accept an interpretation of last year's Illinois pension reform law that says it...

Who Says Illinois is Broke? $10 Million to Restore Uptown Theater – Daily Observer

http://www.cdobs.com/archive/featured/who-says-illinois-is-broke-10-million-to-restore-uptown-theater/

Illinois lawmakers’ own pension fund is hopelessly broke

http://www.illinoispolicy.org/blog/blog.asp?ArticleSource=5255

State of Illinois’ record of shorting pensions goes back decades – State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/top-stories/x846054923/State-of-Illinois-record-of-shorting-pensions-goes-back-decades

Illinois to return to bond market with $800 mln bonds sale – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/13/illinois-bonds-idUSL1N0C51Y420130313

Honor roll of legislators who have opted out of taxpayer-paid pension – Illinois Review

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/04/freshman-illinois-legislators-make-it-personal-on-pension-reform.html

Another year with no pension reform — what happens now? -The State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/top-stories/x514117402/Another-year-with-no-pension-reform-What-happens-now?zc_p=2

Illinois: Driving into a ditch – MuniLand

http://blogs.reuters.com/muniland/2013/06/04/illinois-driving-into-a-ditch/

Failure to fix nation’s worst pension crisis hurts Illinois’ credit rating, costs taxpayers millions – Associated Press

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/ceb8f2ceda7e4e0ba8dd5d85ece6aa81/US--Pensions-Illinois-Effect

Amid Detroit bankruptcy, ‘Chicago has too many similarities to ignore’ – The Globe and Mail

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/top-business-stories/amid-detroit-bankruptcy-chicago-has-too-many-similarities-to-ignore/article13340570/

Pension Spikers Gone Wild (on Suburban Fire Board)- Sun-Times

“I cannot burden this district . . . with your questions.” via West suburban fire board pumped up chiefs’ pensions, promoted trustee’s partner - Chicago...

New estimate of IL unfunded pension liability shatters old ones: $287 billion! – State Budget Solutions

http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/promises-made-promises-broken-the-betrayal-of-pensioners-and-taxpayers

Cullerton backs pension “reform plan to save $138 billion” – Springfield, IL – The State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x452546738/Cullerton-backs-pension-reform-plan-to-save-138-billion?zc_p=1

Pension woes not isolated by size: many other Illinois public pensions are in trouble – Jacksonville Journal-Courier

http://www.myjournalcourier.com/news/local/pension-woes-not-isolated-by-size/article_27557a76-2e43-11e3-8a26-001a4bcf6878.html

Reuters’ Analysis: No answers for Chicago’s pension ills as mayor prepares budget

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/22/us-usa-chicago-pensions-analysis-idUSBRE99L1IN20131022?feedType=RSS&feedName=domesticNews

Pension progress reported, but vote unlikely this week – State Journal-Register

http://www.sj-r.com/thedome/x450315759/Pension-progress-reported-but-vote-unlikely-this-week

New song, old tune with pension “reform” at Chicago Park District pension – Eden Martin

http://www.suntimes.com/news/martin/23708053-452/new-song-old-tune-with-pension-reform-at-chicago-park-district.html Eden Martin, author of this article and President of the Commercial Club of Chicago, has a remarkable ability to distill complex pension issues down...

Aging university folks ‘get rowdy’ at No. IL U. pension forum

http://www.daily-chronicle.com/2013/11/21/akst-pension-reform-at-niu/a7u0khr/

Illinois governor signs pension overhaul into law – The Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/ill-pension-fight-could-create-deeper-fiscal-hole/2013/12/04/f937744a-5d41-11e3-8d24-31c016b976b2_story.html

Unprepared: The World Braces For Retirement Crisis – A.P.

The crisis will play out for decades, and its consequences will be far-reaching. via Unprepared: The World Braces For Retirement Crisis | LEX18.com.

US public finance: Day of reckoning (especially for IL and Chicago) – FT.com

The FT devotes a major story  explaining why our officially reported pension numbers are bunk, yet our local media continue to report them as...

The truth about the ‘tax burden’ of Illinois businesses – Opinion – Taxpayers’ Federation of IL

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20140109/OPINION/140109856

Speed along Illinois pension reform lawsuits – The State Journal-Register

Teachers Retirement System sued in Cook County; the Retired State Employees Association and the Illinois State Employees Association Retirees each filed lawsuits in Sangamon...

Top 10 facts about Illinois pensions – Illinois Policy Institute

Nice summary of the key problems. http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2014/02/top-10-facts-about-illinois-pensions.html

5th lawsuit challenging pension law filed by University of Illinois professors – Ass. Press

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/bf77e31f012845b995e15a6f56cd80af/IL--Illinois-Pensions-Lawsuit

What worked in Wisconsin will work in Illinois – Illinois Policy Inst.

The benefits for the majority of Wisconsinites who don’t happen to work for government are undeniable. - See more at: http://illinoispolicy.org/three-year-anniversary-of-gov-walker-signing-act-10/#sthash.Ljw4kzqV.dpuf http://illinoispolicy.org/three-year-anniversary-of-gov-walker-signing-act-10/

Independent Report Says Proposed Reforms For Chicago Employee Pension Plans Will Prevent Catastrophe, But Only At Great Cost – The Street

http://www.thestreet.com/story/12674974/1/independent-report-says-proposed-reforms-for-chicago-employee-pension-plans-will-prevent-catastrophe-but-only-at-great-cost.html

Time to Consolidate Local Governments – Illinois News Network

At last count, the Illinois Comptroller’s Office said the Land of Lincoln has 8,466 units of local governments. http://ilnews.org/time-to-consolidate-local-governments/#.U15VSFca2cy

Best piece of the week: Getting to the truth on exploding Chicago property taxes – Reboot

http://politics.suntimes.com/article/chicago/property-tax-ticking-time-bomb/fri-05232014-955pm#bmb=1

Illinois must step away from public pensions altogether-Northwest Herald

http://www.nwherald.com/2013/01/08/illinois-must-step-away-from-public-pensions-altogether/can0kml/

One solution for Illinois’ pension problem – Opinion – Crain’s

http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20130116/OPINION/130119858/heres-an-actual-honest-to-goodness-pension-fix

The first system to be insolvent? The legislators’ own

http://www.sj-r.com/thedome/x1578915242/The-first-system-to-be-insolvent-GARS

New pension plan would make “temporary” income tax hike permanent and have local taxpayers picking up the tab – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/70244/new-pension-plan-would-have-taxpayers-pick-up-pension-tab-illinois/

A teacher: “Cut my pension, please”

http://www.sj-r.com/thedome/x1037518378/John-Allen-Cut-my-pension-please?zc_p=0

Pensions top $100,000 for 42% of District 211 retired educators – DailyHerald.com

Palatine-Schaumburg via Pensions top $100,000 for 42% of District 211 retired educators - DailyHerald.com.

Court says healthcare for retired state workers does not have a constitutional guarantee – A.P.

http://www.pjstar.com/free/x1037524935/Illinois-retiree-health-insurance-lawsuit-dismissed

While Systems Go Bust, Public Pension Elites Profit – Better Gov. Ass.

http://www.bettergov.org/while_systems_go_bust_public_pension_elites_profit/

The pension funding guarantee: an irresponsible plan

https://www.illinoispolicy.org/news/article.asp?ArticleSource=5764

Illinois Senate to vote on union-endorsed pension reform bill – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/07/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0DN1QX20130507

Illinois Senate defeats sweeping pension reform bill – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/31/us-usa-illinois-pensions-idUSBRE94U03I20130531

Food stamps far outpace new jobs in Illinois- IL Policy Inst.

http://illinoispolicy.org/blog/blog.asp?ArticleSource=6102

Detroit, Chicago, and Public Debt – Commentary Magazine

http://www.commentarymagazine.com/2013/08/06/detroit-chicago-and-public-debt-unions-pensions/

Pandemic of pension woes is plaguing the nation – CNBC

http://www.cnbc.com/id/100929269

Scrap Public Pensions – Chicago Now

http://www.chicagonow.com/chicago-political-commentary/2013/08/scrap-public-pensions/#.UhZVPj_3Nu4

Are Chicago schools learning the right lesson from pension crisis? – Watchdog.org

http://watchdog.org/102713/are-chicago-schools-learning-the-right-lesson-from-pension-crisis/

Less is more for unions and contributions

http://www.rrstar.com/opinion/x574264432/Scott-Reeder-Less-is-more-for-unions-and-contributions

$620 Billion Promised, Only $62 Billion Set Aside in Illinois – Heartlander Magazine

http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2013/09/04/620-billion-promised-only-62-billion-set-aside-illinois

Rich Miller: Special committee’s pension reform plan about ready

http://southtownstar.suntimes.com/news/miller/22553999-452/miller-special-committees-pension-reform-plan-about-ready.html

House Speaker Madigan waiting on pension vote to be scheduled, but won’t commit to calling it – Associated Press

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/3428c50ca0b34c0fb131c4d3af14aa27/IL--Illinois-Pensions-Madigan

With tax cut pending, Wisconsin’s surplus reaches $759 million – Milwaukee JounrnalSentinal

http://www.jsonline.com/news/statepolitics/wisconsin-legislature-expected-to-act-quickly-on-tax-break-b99119868z1-227718991.html A reminder that neighbors competing for our employers aren't standing still. Wisconsin likely will cut its property taxes by $100 million.

Unions plan ’emergency days’ to lobby lawmakers on pensions – Associated Press

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x450319338/Unions-plan-emergency-days-to-lobby-lawmakers

Illinois House to take up pension reform on Dec. 3 – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/11/25/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0JA1SA20131125

Three reasons Illinois’ pension plan falls short – State Budget Solutions

http://www.statebudgetsolutions.org/publications/detail/three-reasons-illinois-pension-plan-falls-short

What the Detroit bankruptcy ruling means legally for Illinois – Illinois Review

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/12/what-the-detroit-bankruptcy-ruling-means-for-illinois.html Good summary of the topic in this story. The IL General Assembly would have to authorize Illinois cities and municipalities to file for bankruptcy....

Detroit ruling opens door to pension cuts across the nation – L.A. Times

Full story at http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-public-employee-pensions-20131208,0,3337836.story#axzz2mzWmgAuP  

Pension bill’s accounting gimmicks ignore $6-$8B in debt – Il. Policy Inst.

Are lawmakers seriously hoping they’ll overlook this one, especially when our own actuaries are highlighting it? - See more at: http://illinoispolicy.org/pension-bills-accounting-gimmicks-ignores-6-8b-in-debt/#sthash.bCWEK08I.dpuf "Are lawmakers seriously hoping...

New target for IL pension fix – Shaw Media

http://www.morrisdailyherald.com/2013/12/20/new-target-for-pension-fix/amxrjh7/

Illinois teachers sue in effort to block pension reform law – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/12/27/usa-illinois-pensions-idUSL2N0K618D20131227

State pension payment to rise 100M; smallest in years – Journal Star

If you understand just one thing about how politicians manage pensions, make it this: They always, always end up making reduction of near term...

Panel Seeks Greater Disclosures on Pension Health – NYTimes.com

In a report to be released on Monday, the panel (of the Society of Actuaries) will recommend that pension actuaries provide plan boards of...

Investors scramble for Chicago bonds despite credit downgrades – Reuters

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/13/usa-chicago-bonds-idUSL2N0MA18020140313

Trying to defuse the pension time bomb – perspective from a journalist who had his private sector pension cut

http://www.everygoddamnday.com/2014/04/trying-to-defuse-pension-time-bomb.html

$5 Trillion Price Tag for State and Local Pensions

http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/the-best-life/2012/11/08/5-trillion-price-tag-for-public-pensions

Civic Committee: Illinois pension system ‘unfixable’; text of their memo here

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x871170048/Civic-Committee-Ill-pension-system-unfixable

Suburban pension relief may be delayed

http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20121125/news/711259915/

US taps pension fund to avoid passing debt limit – Ass. Press

http://news.yahoo.com/us-taps-pension-fund-avoid-211937220.html

If those unfunded pensions shown on your property tax bill made you sick, get sicker – WirePoints Original

Property tax bills in Cook County arrived last week and they include what seems like a nice step towards transparency about the pension crisis. ...

Senate approves pension changes for teachers

http://illinoisissuesblog.blogspot.com/2013/03/senate-approves-pension-changes-for.html

What a pension guarantee will do to Illinois – Opinion

http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2013/04/the-stockton-crystal-ball-what-a-pension-guarantee-will-do-to-illinois.html

Editorial: What’s ‘morally’ wrong? Fake pension fix – Chicago Sun-Times

http://www.suntimes.com/opinions/20003392-474/editorial-whats-morally-wrong-fake-pension-fix.html