Category: Pensions

Illinois' pension crisis is more fearsome than union flacks want us to believe

Among the union flacks is one Ralph Martire of the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability, a think tank well funded by Illinois public employee unions. Martire was brought in by three liberal Illinois state lawmakers at a Evanston town hall to explain, clarify or propagandize (take your choice) the Democratic solution to Illinois’ crushing pension problem. Which... Read more »

Illinois Gov. Pritzker's tax increase will only lead to yet another one

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s skeletal plan for a tax increase is so flawed that it will induce demands for even more higher taxes, according to an analysis by the Illinois Policy Institute. The problem is Pritzker’s budget is based overly optimistic and unreasonable projections for the state’s growth. The analysis discovers: When employing one of the... Read more »

Pretend Illinois finances are just ducky and the problem is solved

As the Democratic-control state of Illinois is nearly over its head in the financial quicksand, you’ll be glad to know that the Legislature will consider making penicillium the official state microbe. Dan McCaleb,of the Illinois News Network also notes other pressing issues that also are getting immediate attention, such as making SKI citrus soda the state’s official soft drink. Phew.... Read more »
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Why Illinois needs a constitutional amendment to save itself

A former U.S. Comptroller General, David Walker, has  added his voice to the many who say that Illinois must amend its constitution “to defuse a ticking retirement time bomb” for Chicago and the state. He wrote in Truth in Accounting that the amendment should be based on a federal law– the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974... Read more »

Chicago's using one credit card to pay off another

How often are consumers warned not to build a mountain of debt so they won’ use one credit card to pay what’s due on another? It’s not doing anything really to solve the money problems. It only makes it worse. Chicago is doing exactly that, as it plans to issue $10 billion in bonds to pay its unfunded pension plans.... Read more »

Government pension plans' dirty secret

Elizabeth Bauer writing in Forbes The bottom line:  public pension plans’ poor funding levels would be even worse if they were accounted for the way that private pension plans are, the fact that their accounting methods differ has contributed to the funding crisis. (Caution: actuarial language ahead.)
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$1 out of $3 Illinois income tax dollars is paid out to retired educators

Hard to believe, but that’s what Adam Andrzejewski, disclosed in Forbes magazine. We thank the teachers for their service and wish them a long, healthy and wealthy retirement. But something has to be done to save the state of Illinois. Wrote Andrzejewski: llinois teachers are starting their three-month summer break. But when it comes to teacher salaries,... Read more »

Wait. What? Illinois' unfunded pension obligation is >$200 billion, NOT $140 billion?

This hasn’t received much attention, but it’s big, important news that Illinois’ unfunded government pensions amount to at least $200 billion, instead of the $140 billion that’s usually cited. I say “at least” because the $200 billion figure calculated by Moody’s Investors Service is for 2016, about two years old. What it amounts to now is... Read more »

An Illinois pension primer gets to the heart of the problem

The Better Government Association recently published an apologia for Illinois’ high government worker pensions, diminishing them as a reason for the state’s financial problems. Its “Big pensions just a tiny part of big pension mess” is a disappointing and thin explanation that is based on union-friendly or financed sources, such as Ralph Martire, executive director of the... Read more »
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Nearly half the $13,077 Illinois spends per student goes, not to the students, but to pensions

Illinois public schools are under attack; they don’t get enough money; they don’t get respect. Give them more and more and more money. From statements like those, you’d think that Attila the Hun is riding into Illinois with the sole mission of slashing education funds down to nothing with the intent of making American children the... Read more »
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