* For weeks now, Gov. Pat Quinn and his staff have been saying that he believes more of the burden for pension funding ought to be paid by local school districts. For instance, this is from Monday…
Gov. Pat Quinn, responding to a dire new report on state finances Monday, said more clearly than ever that he wants schools and universities to help pay for their employees’ retirement costs.
A statement from Quinn’s budget office said the practice of state government paying for the retirement of downstate teachers and professors “requires careful examination and reform” because “employers need to have a stake in funding their own employees’ pension costs.” [Emphasis added.]
“Everyone who has employees in the pension system should contribute something to the pensions,” Quinn said.
* But Kurt Erickson reports today that the same budget office which has been talking openly about the idea is now starting to walk it back…
It appears unlikely Gov. Pat Quinn will push hard this spring to shift some of the state’s skyrocketing pension costs off on local school districts and universities.
A top official in the governor’s budget office downplayed Quinn’s recent comments on such a move, which school districts say could either trigger massive cuts in local school programs or force downstate and suburban districts to seek property tax increases.
Kelly Kraft, deputy director of the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget, said the idea is “a concept” at the moment.
“This is just something we’re taking a look at,” Kraft said.
* Candidates for Illinois House, Senate back school funding shift: Candidates also said they opposed the idea of shifting the burden from the state and asking local taxpayers to fully fund teacher pensions. T
* Proposal To Shift Teacher Pension Contributions
* Editorial: Brace yourself for a new tax hit