SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Today’s history lesson

Wednesday, Jul 11, 2012

* Eric Zorn looks at the history of employer contributions to teacher pension funds

Chicago started its own teacher pension fund in 1895, and the non-Chicago statewide fund started in 1913. Then in 1939, the laws were overhauled, benefits were standardized and the Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Illinois — the suburban and downstate program — was formalized.

Why didn’t the two systems just merge at that time?

“Because ours was older and much better funded,” said James F. Ward, 74, executive director of the Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund from 1967 until 1997. And Chicago was able to strike a deal that funneled a fair share of state tax revenues into funding pensions for Chicago Public Schools.

That all changed in 1995 with the deal that ceded control of CPS to Mayor Richard M. Daley. Part of the arrangement called for the Chicago Board of Education to have the flexibility to mingle education funds with funds formerly earmarked only for pensions, Ward said.

Another part of the deal was that the state would try to kick 20 to 30 percent of overall teacher retirement-fund payments back to Chicago, kind of like in the old days. But this aspiration — this goal — has lately gone by the wayside as budgets have tightened.

In fiscal 1995, the first year of the deal, Chicago got 23.2 percent of the money that went to the Teachers’ Retirement Fund. Fair enough, or close to it.

By fiscal 2012, that figure had dropped to 0.4 percent — not quite nothing but almost — with Chicago getting shorted by roughly $540 million, according to Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund estimates. And some of the local money formerly earmarked for pensions instead went to paying the ongoing costs of running city schools.


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Freeman - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 1:30 pm:

    Appreciate Zorn’s efforts to educate. Very helpful. Still wondering 2 things from Longo’s op-ed yesterday:

    - “The state’s funding formula for Chicago Public Schools — money for special education, bus transportation, free and reduced lunch and breakfast programs, summer school and educational service centers — is based on fiscal year 1996 student population totals that have not been updated.”

    Anyone know why that is?

    - “The Legislature passed a law providing for annual contributions in excess of $400 million to the CPS pension fund, starting in 2010. Check out the CPS budget, which is posted online, Mr. Speaker.”


  2. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 1:55 pm:

    –Another part of the deal was that the state would try to kick 20 to 30 percent of overall teacher retirement-fund payments back to Chicago, kind of like in the old days.–

    When you see the word “try,” you have no deal at all, as evidenced by today’s 0.4% contribution.

  3. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 2:02 pm:

    word, my experience is it depends on who you make your deal with. But even then, people move on and administrations change, and the new folks have a tendency to say, ‘hey, i didn’t agree to that”

  4. - titan - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 2:08 pm:

    It appears that teh State was funding all teacher pensions somewhat evenly until the deal where the City got the ability to take the money and use it for other things (which seems to be a recurring Illinois pension problem) and the State then began renigging there (like in so many other areas).

  5. - It's Just Me - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 2:25 pm:

    Completely unrelated, but I would enjoy a similar history lesson on why Cook County has an appointed (for life) medical examiner but every other county has an elected coroner. It isn’t because Cook is home rule; coroners and such are in the State’s Counties Code.

    I can’t help but wonder if Cook’s current problem would have existed if a Cook County Coroner had to face the voters like all the other counties.

  6. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 2:34 pm:

    The coroner was recently changed to a 5-year term.

  7. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 2:58 pm:

    Titan, the word you’re looking for is “reneging.” I’m not usually the grammar police, but the word you used might get you into trouble so I’m only trying to help you out.

    Carry on.

  8. - James the Intolerant - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 3:13 pm:

    Bad deal in 1995 allowing CPS to co-mingle the funds.

  9. - titan - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 3:31 pm:

    47th - thanks. I’m too used to spellchecker features I guess.

  10. - soccermom - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 4:08 pm:

    Love Zorn. Love Zorn.

  11. - Jade Rabbit - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 4:41 pm:

    So as the money into teachers pensions declined, the salary of teachers increased.

    I’d be interested to see if this could be correlated graphically.

  12. - Anyone Remember? - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 5:42 pm:

    So … the decrease in State funds for Chicago Public Schools dates to giving Mayor Daley more “flexibility” … . IMHO, that means Daley caused this, and the State should “remove the flexibility” … .

  13. - Anyone Remember? - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 5:45 pm:

    It’s Just Me -

    Years ago, read a Royko column that said the reason Cook County voters abolished the Coroner’s Office and created a Medical Examiner was scandals, particularly stripping jewelry off corpses.,3800691

  14. - David W. Aubrey - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 9:57 pm:

    Elections for coroners is down right creepy. The person deciding the cause of death shouldn’t be in a political office; in my humble opinion.

  15. - Cheswick - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 10:57 pm:

    David, not only that, but we don’t require any qualifications to be coroner, which always made me wonder if a high school drop-out could get elected. Although, I think they do have to go through some training after getting elected.

  16. - Liberty_First - Wednesday, Jul 11, 12 @ 11:23 pm:

    David, An elected coroner is a check and balance against an elected sheriff.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Happy Thanksgiving!
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Five unanswered questions
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Question of the day
* Caption contest!
* Crossing the line
* Moody's warns Illinois
* The Credit Union Difference
* *** UPDATED x1 - Franks responds *** Uh-oh
* Then and now
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's blog posts

Visit our advertisers...







Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

* Want to write about Android? We’re hiring!
* Talk Android Apps of the Week: November 28, 2015
* Sony Xperia Z5 Premium is now for sale on Bell Canada
* Li-Fi Probably Won’t Be The New Wi-Fi For Most People
* Mid-range Lenovo K32c36 gets the go ahead from TENAA
* iPhone mini, Galaxy Marshmallow updates comments & more – Pocketnow Daily Recap
* Samsung’s new Exynos 8890 SoC tops all benchmark results on AnTuTu

* Detroit Tigers make AL Central's first big splash with Jordan Zimme...
* South Side Sox' SB Nation MLB Awards voting results
* Starting Pitcher Rankings: Chris Sale and Jose Quintana maintain st...
* Scouting profile: Adam Engel
* Alex Avila will try to shed limitations with White Sox
* White Sox program provides kids real chance
* Johnson solid candidate for White Sox rotation


Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0


* Task force looks to shrink Illinois government .....
* Kasich opposes Syrian refugees in US - TV Newsroom..

* Report: SAFB considered for new spy agency office since 2005
* Chicago announces expansion of police body-camera program
* No notable delays for holiday travelers at Chicago airports
* Closer Look: Task force looks to shrink Illinois government
* EXCHANGE: Joliet educators work with Hispanic families
* EXCHANGE: Chaplains offer support to terminally ill
* Grant supports Alzheimer's research by Peoria professor
* Rockford-based waste services company sold to Texas firm
* 3 teens killed in northern Illinois crash
* Springfield micro-lending fund gives $120K in 1st 2 months

* 'Pot doctors' pushing boundaries in Illinois, other states
* Burger King manager: Police erased video of Chicago shooting
* Local free community college plans may be template for U.S.
* Rauner faces challenges in move to block refugees
* Vendor Payment Program suspended due to budget impasse
* Rauner pardons man found innocent of 1999 attack
* Springfield jobless rate falls again, to 5.1 percent
* Springfield police chief sees problems with body cam law
* Lawsuit challenges Illinois ban on marijuana campaign money
* Number of Illinois inmates released on parole climbing

* Tribune newspapers likely to be sold off, Murdoch says
* How a big deal is changing Chicago's hotel market
* Crain's names Danielle Narcisse copy chief
* What's new at Roti? Its name and a national ambition
* State's job woes start on the factory floor

* Niklas Hjalmarsson skates swiftly and carries a big stick
* Bears may offer suite life at ground level
* Officials see uptick in historic renovations in Springfield
* Task force looks to shrink Illinois government
* WATCH: Patrick Kane’s goal breaks NHL record
* Patrick Kane sets American record with 19-game point streak
* Kings rally from 2-0 third-period deficit to stun Hawks in OT
* Blackhawks preternatural confidence rubs off on new players
* Joel Quenneville wants Jonathan Toews to keep his gloves on
* Activists circle City Hall with black casket to honor Laquan, Tyshawn

* 3 dead, 5 wounded in Chicago shootings
* Man accused of hiding roommate's body in suitcase held without bail
* Demonstrators hold climate change rally, march in Loop
* Police: Mother, son found dead in Beach Park; 'person' of interest in custody
* Man held on $200K in fatal Dan Ryan crash
* Missing person alert issued for girl, 16
* Gary woman killed in shooting Saturday night
* 6 sickened by carbon monoxide gas in Logan Square
* $2M bail set for man charged with robbery, murder in cousin's death
* Man killed, girlfriend wounded in Back of the Yards shooting

* Bernard Schoenburg: Book on Blagojevich impeachment lets reader 'be right there'
* Andy Shaw: It's time to crack down on no-bid contracts
* 'Pot doctors' pushing boundaries in Illinois, other states
* Burger King manager: Police erased video of Chicago shooting
* Kristina Rasmussen: Relying on one another, not the government
* Charles Krauthammer: The Syrian immigration cul-de-sac
* Rob Elliott: EPA ethanol ruling affects more than energy policy
* Local free community college plans may be template for U.S.
* Rauner faces challenges in move to block refugees
* Vendor Payment Program suspended due to budget impasse

* Warrant issued for 'armed and dangerous' Mahomet man
* Nov. 30 Bob Asmussen Chat
* Nov. 29 Asmussen Top 25
* Pet Talk: Unpleasant surprises
* Sundiata Cha-Jua/Real Talk: Are WSUs the new backlash against black resistance?
* Ted Kooser: An American Life in Poetry, Nov. 29, 2015
* Donna Reed/Voices: In life, sometimes we just need a reboot
* Getting Personal: Amanda Bossard
* Reluctant Townie: The legend of the Thanksgiving Troll
* Leonard Pitts Jr.: Trump giving people want they want

* Heat check: Coaching carousel turns into roller coaster
* Thousands turn out to honor 5-year-old Chad Carr, family
* No. 2 Alabama faces Florida as SEC's last hope for playoffs
* Giants 'sleptwalked' in 20-14 loss to Skins; both teams 5-6
* Campbell scores in OT, Panthers beat Red Wings 2-1

* House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
* Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
* The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
* Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
* Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
* CBD Oil, and politics
* Simon considering state Senate bid
* Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
* Shutdown? State may not notice
* Rep. Bob Dold

* Durbin Backs Duckworth - Alton Daily News...

* Opinion: Sen. Kirk must stand with crimina......

* Jail killer cops. Not Poets. #FreeMalcolmLondon
* Random thoughts.
* Free Malcolm London.
* Sunday posts, pics and tweets.
* Chinese Take Out
* "Mexican Food, Opening Soon"
* Tony at the Red Line Tap.
* The cover-up of the killing of Laquan McDonald.
* Keeping retirement weird. Justice is the public face of love.
* RLC Roundup: Drivers Aim Lawsuit At Tinley Park Red Light Cameras

* Emergency Management Officials, National Weather Service Encourage Winter Preparedness - November is Winter Weather Preparedness Month in Illinois
* Keep Your Family Safe This Winter - November through February are leading months for carbon monoxide related incidents
* Governor Takes Bill Action
* Illinois Department of Labor Director Hugo Chaviano Awards Governor’s Award for Contributions in Health and Safety to the Illinois Refining Division of Marathon Petroleum Company LP
* State Regulator Elected Treasurer of Interstate Medical Licensure Compact

Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller