Wednesday, Apr 23, 2014
Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Trending on the Journal

Related Headlines

Illinois' next pension issue: Police, fire funds

Illinois Senate president suggesting schools pay their own pensions

Fifth Pension Lawsuit Filed By U of I Employees

More state lawmakers opting out of Illinois' pension system

Part-time Illinois workers receiving lifetime pensions

Recent Comments

polkadot76 - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Exactly right. Nothing like adding a bit of drama to bolster your "argument." How can anyone complain? For starters, the bloated budgets of the police and fire departments, and the funding of the generous pensions for those employees, is the primary source of the budget woes that the City is facing. Nothing has really been done to address those issues, save for terminating a few "non-essential"…
topdown - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
That's a bit dramatic, don't you think? What are you suggesting? That if the firefighters didn't get a raise, they were going to walk off the job? Or maybe fight fires at half speed? Because that's the only way that public safety would be jeopardized. With regard to the Consumer Price Index, I agree with polkadot. There are a lot of people out there whose salary hasn't…
qfingers - New Quincy trash system estimated to begin in January 2015 - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
And they had said they were going to buy 2 automated trucks...but the RFP says "an automated garbage truck" which implies one truck. Is that right? http://www.ci.quincy.il.us/bids/garbage-truck
SandyBush - Woman arrested after police find abandoned child - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
I think GuyFawkes10 was referring to the mother.
yesqcy - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Can't afford public safety? That's one of very few things a city its suppose to afford! And the CPI comment on this thread its a very good point and it appears these men and women have taken less than that. How can anyone complain?

Most Popular

Two die in overnight house fire Updated

Woman arrested after police find abandoned child

Adams Co. Divorces for April, 18 2014

Firefighters and Bus Drivers contracts to go to City Council

Traffic stopped on Bayview Bridge after car crash

Fowler man arrested for meth possession

Aldermen approve transit and fire contracts Updated Video

REBEL MEDIA: Yes, Peoria mayor DID sic police on Tweeter Video

Two new numbers, one point: Illinois can’t afford pensions

Two new numbers, one point: Illinois can’t afford pensions

7 months, 2 weeks ago by Ben Yount, Illinois Watchdog

State will pay $620 billion in pensions over the next 30 years

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois taxpayers can look at two different numbers that lead to the same conclusion — the state cannot afford its pension payments.

The public policy group State Budget Solutions released a report this week showing Illinois’ pension debt is more than $287 billion, nearly three times the $100 billion debt Illinois lawmakers say they are working to contain.

The Illinois Policy Institute then released its report showing the state will pay $620 billion to retiring state workers over the next 30 years. 

“This $620 billion is the amount that Illinois’ five state-run pension systems will pay out in retirement benefits and cost-of-living adjustments for work already completed by workers and retirees. And the bill starts getting paid next year,” Ted Dabrowksi, the Policy Institute’s vice president, said. “ The pension systems will pay out nearly $9 billion in benefits in 2014. These payouts will increase every year through 2045.”

Dabrowski said Illinois can hardly afford this year’s $9 billion pension payment, and there is no way the state can afford the scheduled $32 billion payment in 2044.

Illinois has, depending on who you believe, anywhere between 40 percent and 24 percent of the money it needs to cover future pension costs.

But those numbers are not set; Illinois has invested its pension cash and the return on those investments has fluctuated recently.

“Academics and the credit rating agencies argue that the state’s 8 percent expected investment returns are unrealistic and make the pension systems look healthier than they actually are,” Dabrowski said.

The State Budget Solutions report takes Illinois to task for expecting too much.

“We chose a lower rate (3.22 percent) because the current practice of relying on optimistic investment return assumptions obscures the true size of liabilities,” State Budget Solutions editor Cory Eucalitto said. “Plans are not guaranteed to achieve a return simply because it is assumed.”

State Budget Solutions’ 3 percent rate of return — compared with Illinois’ assumed 8 percent — nearly triples the state’s pension debt.

“The numbers that we gathered from the plans themselves showed a $99.7 billion unfunded liability. Using the lower rate shows that number to actually be $287 billion,” Eucalitto said.

Abdon Pallasch, budget spokesman for Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, said the governor is sticking with the $100 billion pension debt estimate — for now. 

“The Teachers Retirement System, the state’s largest pension fund, just last year revised down its rate from 8.5 percent to 8 percent,” Pallasch noted. “In response, the governor’s Office of Management and Budget revised upward its projected pension shortfall to $100 billion.”

Pallasch said no matter the number, Quinn wants to “reform” Illinois’ worst-in-the-nation pension systems.

But reform is not a part of the equation for either the Illinois Policy Institute or the editors at State Budget Solutions. Both want a new system.

“The best solution is an immediate switch to a defined contribution retirement system,” Eucalitto said. “These systems are proven to provide retirement security in the private sector, and (offer) greater assurance that employers will make their promised contributions.”

Dabrowski has long championed 401(k)-style retirement system for public workers.

“Illinois workers and retirees are trapped in a collapsing system over which they have no control. That’s the result of the state not allowing workers to manage their own retirement savings. And as the Detroit crisis reveals, retirees can’t escape the consequences of bankruptcy,” Dabrowski said.


From the Newsroom

nichols120 on Twitter

nichols120 4 hours, 45 minutes ago

It is a fine art! "@mthopf: While the town hall meeting may not have lasted long, @nichols120 and I discussed the fine art of hotdogs."
nichols120 on Twitter

nichols120 5 hours, 53 minutes ago

@mthopf and peanuts
nichols120 on Twitter

nichols120 5 hours, 56 minutes ago

@mthopf I propose we have cape air service to Hannibal
nichols120 on Twitter

nichols120 5 hours, 57 minutes ago

RT @missourigop: .@GovJayNixon on barnstorming tour, whining about tax cuts on your dime - again. #SB509 #moleg