It’s difficult to believe, but guess what the Illinois General Assembly was quick to move on  after not meeting for over seven months: An increase in benefits for a Chicago pension and more power to the Chicago Teachers Union.

The Illinois Senate voted Monday to raise retirement benefits for over 2,000 Chicago firefighters by giving the right to an automatic 3% annual COLA to more retirees. That would cost city taxpayers $850 million in added benefits by 2055. The Chicago Firefighter’s pension is already in desperate shape, being just 18% funded. The bill already had passed the House. No word yet on whether Gov. JB Pritzker will veto it. A Chicago Sun-Times article on the bill is here. Mayor Lori Lightfoot, to her credit, objected strenuously.

The Senate also passed a bill that would end limits that have been in place for 25 years on what the Chicago Teachers Union can bargain for in contract negotiations. The CTU is limited to negotiating over wages and benefits, but the bill would open negotiations to a host of contract-related issues such as class sizes. This bill, too has already passed the House and Pritzker is thought to be likely to sign it. A WTTW story on the bill is here.

-Mark Glennon

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Dale
5 days ago

Unbelievable! Can’t pay the debt now and voting to increase the debt later! Obviously there is no saving this state!

rick1099
5 days ago

The 3% is non compounding. 3% is based on the amount of the original annuity and it’s the same amount every year. State retirees get compounded COLA raises.

Mark Felt
5 days ago

Look for teacher pay to go up and student competence to drop even lower than it already is….especially in Chicago.

The Truth Hurts
5 days ago

So far the legislature is working on strengthening CTU bargaining rights, increasing Chicago Firefighter pensions, and passing the Black Caucus Education bill. I’m sure after they are done spending additional money they will get to the work of cutting out $4 Billion out of the budget instead of raising taxes. Hahahaha.

Do people still not believe that taxes are going up?

John
5 days ago

People should just move like me. But no matter if taxes go up, this train is going to crash and burn soon, and the pensions will burn with it.

Lars
5 days ago

And the police reform bill has been refiled under HB HB3653, as they must be worried the estimated 20,000 witness slips that were filed in opposition to HB 162 would have shown how much opposition there is to this reckless bill.

NB-Chicago
5 days ago

Satisfying the wishs of upper class unelected city unions comes ahead of objections from elected by taxpayer / homeowner –city mayor. Thats your fake equitable/progressive dem machine at work, looken out for who’s important

NB-Chicago
5 days ago
Reply to  NB-Chicago

Shows how weak lighweight is, the machines walken all over her

LessonLearned
5 days ago

To those of you who say they can’t move….that’s exactly what the Illinois/Chicago politicians and the public unions are counting on.

David F
5 days ago

What part of Bankrupt the JB not understand.

Hock
5 days ago

Humorous how the State is Broke, and the person that is pushing all this is under Federal Indictment. Teachers Unions should be removed from Schools as well as Tenure. There is too much dead wood on the payroll and its about time that schools take some pride in turning out brilliant kids especially in the inner city. This is the same faction that is calling to defund the police and neuter them more than they already are. All one has to see if the shooting and death rate in Chicago to know this is the Rich versus the Working class… Read more »

Linda
6 days ago

WTH! Don’t the Illinois legislator know the state is just about bankrupt and there’s a pandemic that has the country and Illinois economy has/is in the dumpster for almost a year and will continue for another 6 to 12 months! Wish I could move!!!!!

Hock
5 days ago
Reply to  Linda

Do not forget the legislators like the Teachers are collecting paychecks whether they work or not, so they do not care about the rest of the State especially anything south of I 80. Like you I wish I could pull the plug and get out of this corrupt State..

rick1099
5 days ago
Reply to  Linda

The pension mentioned is the sole property of the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois has no financial obligations to any of the city pension plans.

Last edited 5 days ago by rick1099
Indy
3 days ago
Reply to  Linda

You can move.
Illinois is not North Korea.

Illinois Entrepreneur
6 days ago

Madigan is fairly powerful (even in his current, weakened state). I read this morning that Chris Welch is going to be nominated by the Black Caucus for Speaker.

Welch is a weak politician, craving special interest money to advance his career.

Imagine the power that the public unions will have over him, and the ridiculous bills that will continue to come forward.

This bill spiking the firefighter’s pensions is only the start.

rick1099
5 days ago

If he doesn’t become speaker watch out cause dats racciss

6 days ago

There is an invitation to bias and corruption when when one political party controls both the legislative and executive branches and there is no longer any constitutional separation of powers or checks and balances to protect the “Fair public interest”. The Illinois Constitution needs to be amended and updated , not to raise taxes but to control spending and advance democratic government by empowering citizens’ action with (1) unlimited power to initiate and recall any public office holder; (2) power to initiate or repeal legislative enactments; and (3) power and standing to act as a private Attorney General to review… Read more »

John
6 days ago

I can’t wait to watch these pension plans go totally insolvent and inevitably reduced from Texas. Enjoy it public union pigs.

Not the Senator's Son
6 days ago

And all we need now folks is the Governor’s plan for Patronage Jobs.
https://www.illinoispolicy.org/pritzker-fighting-to-keep-political-hiring-reports-under-wraps/

Get a job in Illinois that is Union and for the state and you’ve got it made in the shade baby for life. You, your wife, your kids and your dog can all live high on the hill and with a full belly. Just be sure your a Democrat.

erik
6 days ago

The state of Illinois is managed entirely for the benefit of public sector unions and the corrupt politicos they support. The only thing that surprises me anymore is that our descent into insolvency and economic collapse hasn’t been quicker.

Thee Jabroni
6 days ago

Madigan and Pritzker-“yes mr union boss ,ANYTHING you say,I know the state is broke and pension funds are nearly insolvent,but of course we’ll make public pensions even more lucrative!-anything else Mr union boss?-JB and I will do whatever you want,just make sure you keep putting money in our bank accounts mr union boss”!!!!

NoHope4Illinois
6 days ago

Stupid is as Stupid does.

You have to leave!