SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Sun-Times sees optimism, Durkin says wait

Wednesday, Oct 30, 2013

* The Sun-Times editorializes on pension reform

Both scenarios being batted around by the state’s four legislative leaders and a 10-member pension committee rely on cutting retirement benefits, mostly by reducing annual cost-of-living increases for retired teachers, state workers, legislators and university employees.

The Republicans are right to push for more than $138 billion, to go for the greatest savings possible. This is the Legislature’s one chance to get this right. But push too hard and retirees are hurt unnecessarily and the final result will never pass.

The compromising begins with Senate President John Cullerton, who last week officially became one of the biggest impediments to getting a deal done. Cullerton said he embraced the $138 billion plan but he also made clear that he thinks pension reform is basically a waste of time. Cullerton said the state’s $100 billion unfunded pension liability wasn’t a “crisis” after all and suggested that Illinois could manage just fine without pension cost-cutting. That’s called talking out of both sides of your mouth.

But this week Cullerton is willing to play ball. He says he’s game for going higher than $138 billion — which is essential because that’s what the other three legislative leaders, including House Speaker Michael Madigan, want. Cullerton’s spokeswoman told us that “$138 billion seems to be the baseline” and “he’s looking for some fair way to get it higher.”

Getting from a baseline to a new, agreed plan is a delicate balancing act. But when we talk to lawmakers close to the negotiations we sense something almost unheard of in politics: optimism.

I didn’t hear a lot of optimism yesterday when I made a quick round of calls. But if the four leaders are committed to going higher than $138 billion, that could be a reason for some hope.

* Then again, maybe not

“Next week, we got three days and I don’t anticipate yet again that much being accomplished,” said State Rep. Jim Durkin, minority leader. […]

Leader Durkin expects Quinn to miss several more paychecks.

“We can come back sometime before the first of the year or come back at the beginning of the year. I want to make sure we do it once, we do it right,” said Durkin.

What’s most interesting here is that Durkin appears willing to take the fall if nothing happens next week.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


34 Comments
  1. - walkinfool - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:28 am:

    They say they “want” it, but will they vote for it when the day comes?

    We’ve seen that play before.


  2. - Downstater - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:38 am:

    Cullerton and the Democrats just don’t get it. Spend. Spend. Spend. Tax. Tax. Tax. That is all they know and do.


  3. - Enough already! - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:42 am:

    How about a common sense proposal aimed at the politically connected? If you earn a platinum pension, you do not receive any pension benefits until you actually retire — we have hogs being paid great pensions while working full-time jobs and accumulating credits for a second pension. Additionally, put an end to the pensioners who work a second position for one day or two weeks and get an immediate boost in pension due to their minimal work in a higher paid position.

    STOP LETTING POLS GAME THE SYSTEM.


  4. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:42 am:

    === Leader Durkin expects Quinn to miss several more paychecks ===

    Well, it doesn’t appear that the Governor is missing any paychecks. Maybe this is why he still isn’t engaged in the process:

    http://ledger.illinoiscomptroller.com/ledger/?LinkServID=FE957D06-07CA-A3B3-6477FA2870A31632&Issue_Year=2013&EmpId=&Agency=&Last_Name=&Position=GOVERNOR&BegRange=&EndRange=&StartRec=1&EndRec=20&GroupBy=Agency


  5. - Raising Kane - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:45 am:

    Anonymous, because his salary wasn’t vetoed, he still gets paid but he has switched his salary from direct deposit to a paper check and those are still still sitting in the Comptroller’s office waiting to be picked up. So, I believe he has 4 checks sitting over there.


  6. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:47 am:

    Pension “reform” became a “crisis” in some minds only when the state became fiscally responsible and started making full contributions.

    The Sun-Times is getting excited a little prematurely. The state and federal Constitutions will be hard to overcome by the plans under consideration.

    Years later, after court, back to square one.


  7. - anon - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:57 am:

    downstater..not sure what part of downstate you are from but “Spend. Spend. Spend. Tax. Tax. Tax” has been a downstate success story–we spend it in downstate and we tax chicagoans..


  8. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 11:58 am:

    Raising Kane,

    Thanks for the clarification.


  9. - Bill White - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:26 pm:

    I believe the General Assembly should wait until those two IL Supreme Court decisions are announced, namely the decision regarding changes or reductions to retiree health care and the Governor’s line item veto case.

    The language of the eventual pension bill should be drafted to best conform with the language of those two decisions.

    Minority leader Durkin is spot on, here: “I want to make sure we do it once, we do it right.”


  10. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:27 pm:

    lol, Anonymous 11:42 and 11:58, you really have to start paying more attention. Especially if you’re an R trying to make a point.


  11. - Ray del Camino - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:35 pm:

    What my fellow “downstater” appears not to understand is that Illinois taxes its citizens less than surrounding states do (easy to compare income tax rates), and that we spend less on state government operations than most states do–even red states. Just repeating “Democrats tax and spend” ’cause it sounds right does not advance the argument.


  12. - foster brooks - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:41 pm:

    I want to see a picture of those checks in the comptrollers office.


  13. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:46 pm:

    Isn’t January when the cola for the calendar year kicks in for state retirees. What’s up with that?
    Pass a bill before the cola and make it effective before the increased checks go out? Make it retroactive and take back the money? Start the year out with the cola then cut the checks later in the year. None of these sound too appetizing. These are, for the most part, low to middle-middle class pensioners we are talking about. I sure hope they are paying attention because however unconstitutional the final product may be, there is no guarantee of a stay. And because an election year (we’re already in it, really) is when citizens have the greatest chance of being heard by elected politicians.


  14. - reformer - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:46 pm:

    == Pension “reform” became a “crisis” in some minds only when the state became fiscally responsible and started making full contributions. ==

    Astute observation that summarizes the issue well in one sentence.

    Ray: I’m afraid it doesn’t do any good to offer the inconvenient truth to those who firmly believe IL is a big spending, big taxing state. I’ve never encountered one Republican who, when you prove IL ranks 50th in number of state employees per capita, admits he might have his facts a little wrong.


  15. - Norseman - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 12:57 pm:

    My money is on the proposition that nothing gets done next week.


  16. - Rusty618 - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:01 pm:

    If the legislators keep insisting that the only way to “save” money is to reduce pension benefits, they need to keep working. Other states have tried this and lost in court. It is time to look in another direction to “save” money.


  17. - a drop in - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:04 pm:

    —I want to see a picture of those checks in the comptrollers office. —

    and I want to see the shoebox they are in.


  18. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:09 pm:

    Can the Illinois Supreme Court issue a kind of a “Friend of the GA” FYI on whether the current bills under consideration appear to violate the Pension Protection Clause of the Illinois Constitution? Might save the state some time in arriving at a Constitutional solution to the DEBT problem that was masked by pension borrowing for so long. I’m thinking something along the lines of “You guys are barking up the wrong tree with the currently proposed pension modifications unless we’re missing something here…Save yourself and the state some grief and a huge waste of time, and fix the state’s structural deficit. Ok? Thanks. Bye.” Judges?


  19. - Bill White - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:11 pm:

    Q: Can the Illinois Supreme Court issue a kind of a “Friend of the GA” FYI

    A: No they cannot do that. At least IMHO

    Which is why those two pending cases are so very important to all of this.


  20. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:14 pm:

    Oh well Bill, I guess we’ll have to do it the hard way then…


  21. - reformer - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:15 pm:

    The AG can issue opinions, however.


  22. - Earl Shumaker - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:22 pm:

    Wordslinger, you are absolutely correct when you wrote, pension “reform” became a “crisis” in some minds only when the state became fiscally responsible and started making full contributions.

    I do hope that you are correct when you say that The state and federal Constitutions will be hard to overcome by the plans under consideration.

    I am so concerned about the amount of corruption we have in this state and Chicago. I just hope the Supreme Court judges have the integrity and backbone to slap these legislators down for wanting to trash the US and Illinois Constitutions


  23. - kimocat - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:25 pm:

    I just got a robo-call from Henry Bayer. There must at least be some fear that a bill will be brought up.


  24. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:26 pm:

    So can I, reformer. We’ve already got Maidar’s detailed opinion. What’s one more lawyer’s opinion going to do to sway the GA?


  25. - TCA - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 1:58 pm:

    [downstater..not sure what part of downstate you are from but “Spend. Spend. Spend. Tax. Tax. Tax” has been a downstate success story–we spend it in downstate and we tax chicagoans..]

    I beg to differ. I do not see any State efforts to attract business and industry anywhere south of I-80 much less south of I-64. Take a look at per-student spending….a huge disparity. The majority of the General Assembly and Statewide elected officers can see the Sears while they drink their morning coffee. That should tell you where all the money is going.


  26. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 2:03 pm:

    –The majority of the General Assembly and Statewide elected officers can see the Sears while they drink their morning coffee. That should tell you where all the money is going.–

    That’s a hilariously absurd statement on so many levels.

    I think we all should wean ourselves from the pipe dream of state government “attracting business and industry.” Those generally are nothing more than very expensive press releases for deals that were going to happen, anyway.

    When did that become the business of government, anyway?

    Provide an educated workforce, good schools and universities and superior infrastructure and you’re in business. The rest is just ego-tripping spin.


  27. - Nearly Normal - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 2:15 pm:

    “see the Sears”–Don’t you mean the Willis? Sears sold the building years ago and the Willis Group bought the naming rights.


  28. - Frank - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 2:49 pm:

    I agree with Rich’s observation tha Durkin seems willing to be the fall guy if no vote is taken next week…and that is a pretty interesting development. Maybe he’s throwing a bone to his downstaters. And maybe he senses that just like in the Spring with SB1, a majority of the HGOP caucus will vote against the “compromise” if it’s called during Veto Session. That’s probably not something he wants to have happen on his first big vote as leader and it won’t help him raise badly needed cash for next year.


  29. - RNUG - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 3:05 pm:

    -wordslinger- and -bill white- are dead on …

    -norseman- is probably right about no action, but if there is action, it sounds like Cullerton is now willing to sign on to a more unconstitutional bill in order to be sure the ISC knocks it down.


  30. - RNUG - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 3:08 pm:

    Earl Shumaker @ 1:22 pm:

    In order for the ISC to rule something like the bills under consideration constitutional, the ISC will have to ignore almost 30 years of precedent set by their own rulings


  31. - Charlie. - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 3:09 pm:

    Cassandra at 12:46. Thanks for pointing out about the low class pensioners. I always figured I must be one as I receive $1000.00 a month in pension. A fellow tried to push me off the sidewalk at the Post Office this a.m.. He must have thought I was low class trying to push me into the gutter. I sure could use that $30.00 a month raise in Jan. If I don`t get it maybe you could float a low classer a loan.


  32. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 4:42 pm:

    Charlie, maybe you should spend tomorrow writing to your legislators or even stop by the office. Because if any of these current proposals goes thru, and sticks, all state retirees will be slipping down quite a bit in the income rankings over time.


  33. - Charlie - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 4:56 pm:

    Cassandra: To be very honest with you I have written and talked till I`m blue in the face. I really believe the majority only care about staying in office by what ever means or which way the political winds are blowing.


  34. - kimocat - Wednesday, Oct 30, 13 @ 5:20 pm:

    RNUG — I would love to hope you are right about Cullerton.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Durbin's back to the future?
* Rauner bites back at union leaders
* Finally, some good Illinois news
* Question of the day
* Attorney General's office says plaintiffs can't back out of Duckworth settlement
* Can't win for losing
* Rauner claims he's meeting with Dem legislators today
* *** LIVE COVERAGE *** Rauner press conference
* *** UPDATED x1 - Gov. Rauner slams story *** Report that Mrs. Rauner wants no reelection is disputed
* Another judge rules that IDPH director violated due process rights
* "It’s not even close to being balanced"
* Kirk campaign admits contact with "whistleblowers" after Duckworth settlement
* Durbin attacks Rauner, says he'll decide about run after November
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* *** LIVE COVERAGE *** Democratic National Convention
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* *** UPDATED x1 - Emanuel responds *** Right under the bus he goes
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Search This Blog...

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

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

  
* Hoping to revive slumping mobile division, LG launches the V20 in September
* Samsung Z2 may bring Tizen to South Africa
* Google Drive Add-Ons now on Android
* Galaxy A8 (2016) found on GFXBench as a 2015 flagship
* Redmi Pro OLED screens are from China, not Samsung
* iPhone 7 Lightning adapter for headphones seemingly found in Vietnam
* SurveyMonkey study finds social media apps ruled mobile in first half of 2016

* Fulmer atop White Sox prospects list
* Ventura keeps focus on field, off trade winds
* Anthony Ranaudo's debut dragged down by White Sox stuff
* White Sox Rumors: Interest in James Shields is increasing
* Ranaudo flirts with no-no before Sox falter late
* Ranaudo the first AL pitcher to homer in 2016
* Midseason update: White Sox Top 30 Prospects list

...............


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
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

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress

Loading


* House Republicans Tap Breen to Fill Vacancy on .....
* Editorial: A chance to boost democracy — and sa.....
* Observations on the 2016 conventions' money tra.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divi.....


* Donations, volunteers aide painting of 'Donna the Tank'
* Springfield police introduce body cameras
* Jail guard charged with punching Cook County jail inmate
* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic convention
* Disturbance reported at Cook County Jail high-security unit
* Fire erupts at Gurnee propane plant
* Illinois AG: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Wounded officers struggle with news of Hinckley's release
* 'The House on Mango Street' novel turned into art exhibit

* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Duckworth lawsuit settlement final, attorney general says
* Attorney General: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Health-care hiring keeps local unemployment at lowest in state
* Local unemployment again lowest in state for June
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divide Illinois
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lotter
* Chicago-area man convicted of $4.7 million Medicaid fraud
* Blagojevich won't attend resentencing, to take part by video
* Chicago-area man convicted of bilking Medicaid for millions

* Huron to buy health care IT consultancy
* Fire erupts at Gurnee propane plant
* This artist is working to make children's hospital wards a little brighter
* Americans blow $27.8 billion a year by being lazy
* U.S. opposes Anthem push for a quick trial in Cigna merger case


* Sale starts for Sox, but Chapman finishes as Cubs split series
* Clinton strides into history: ‘So happy this day has come’
* Can Cubs reverse 1½ months of ‘bad baseball’ and get hot again?
* Sweet: It’s about time
* Person shot by CPD officer in South Shore
* Man shot by Chicago Police in Englewood
* Observations on the 2016 conventions’ money trail
* 2 shot dead in parking dispute; girl, 16, dies from asthma attack
* 19-year-old woman shot, critically wounded in Roseland
* Clinton’s acceptance speech: ‘Stronger Together’


* 1 dead after shot by police in South Shore
* Hillary Clinton accepts Democratic nomination: 'Clear-eyed,' but 'we are not afraid'
* First female presidential nominee's long climb, and the summit that remains
* 2 teens critically wounded in separate shootings
* Man shot by police following South Side robbery
* Cubs lead White Sox 2-1
* Live Blog: Rain clears for opening day of Lollapalooza
* Controversial high-ranking Chicago cop sues IPRA, alleges bias in probes
* Matteson D159 officials spent $96,500 on food, travel, 'gift' Coach purses
* Watch the father of soldier killed in Iraq give powerful address at the Democratic National Convention


* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Duckworth lawsuit settlement final, attorney general says
* Attorney General: Duckworth lawsuit settlement final
* Health-care hiring keeps local unemployment at lowest in state
* Local unemployment again lowest in state for June
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to divide Illinois
* Chicago-area man convicted of $4.7 million Medicaid fraud
* Blagojevich won't attend resentencing, to take part by video
* Bernard Schoenburg: Durbin leads a very early 2018 gubernatorial poll
* George Will: The path ahead for Clinton


* Tom Jones All Star Game
* UI hoops recruit glance: Tim Finke
* Colangelo, Coach K back at it
* Football countdown: Danville
* Bix weekend heats up Friday
* PODCAST: Sports Talk 07-28-16
* Police checking on connection among robberies
* Illinois seeking new private manager for state's lottery
* Giraffe born Monday at Peoria Zoo
* UPDATED: Man charged, bond set at $5 million over shots fired at deputies


* Official: Hostage situation at Cook County jail ends peacefully
* Legion baseball: Fox Lake wins again downstate
* Floyd misses first day of training camp
* Gurnee fire leader: Massive propane plant fire explosion averted
* The Latest: Clinton says no one person can fix everything

* 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 rips Rauner, says governor tries to......
* Durbin rips Rauner, says governor tries to......

* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic co......
* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic co......
* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic co......
* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic co......
* Duckworth tells her story at Democratic co......

* Police Shootings and Race
* House Republicans Tap Breen to Fill Vacancy on Bipartisan Reform Working Group
* Rogue Tickets? Watch Your Car For 7-Day Tow Notices
* #TBT - November 2009: Maryville Site In Development Talks
* Graphic For 'Utilities Pay Up' Report
* IPS Graphic
* Cartoon of the Day - 7/28/16 Trump and Putin DNC emails
* Sign At Chicago 'Freedom Square' Encampment
* 'Freedom Square' Tent City
* Chicago Activists At 'Freedom Square' Encampment


* Governor Rauner and Illinois Lottery Seek New Management Partner
* Governor Takes Bill Action
* Governor Visits Quincy Veterans Home Following New Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease
* Zika Virus And The 2016 Summer Olympics - Travel guidance for those heading to Brazil for the Olympics
* Two Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease Identified in Adams County - New admissions to Quincy Veterans' Home halted




Hosted by MCS -- CapitolFax.com Privacy Policy -- SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax -- Advertise Here -- Mobile Version -- Contact Rich Miller