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*** UPDATED x1 *** No vote on Madigan pension amendment, conference committee to be formed

Tuesday, Jun 18, 2013

* Subscribers were told much more about this earlier today, but here’s a quick e-mail from Rep. Elaine Nekritz’s spokesperson…

I’m told the House committee this afternoon will not be acting on the new version of SB 2404 this afternoon. Testimony will be presented on the bill in a subject matter hearing.

Also, I’m told the plan for tomorrow is for the Senate to non-concur on the House-approved amendment to Senate Bill 1 that make up the House pension plan. The House would then refuse to recede, sending the issue to a conference committee.

The “new version of SB 2404″ is Speaker Madigan’s amendment which guts Senate President Cullerton’s union-negotiated bill. No vote means MJM has backed off a bit. A good sign.

And Madigan opposed formation of a conference committee last week. That position has changed. Again, subscribers know more.

*** UPDATE *** Subscribers were told about this as well


It could be a two-fer session: Pension reform and concealed carry veto override.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

30 Comments
  1. - Cassiopeia - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 10:53 am:

    Its beginning to sound as if an actual deal could be in the works.


  2. - dave - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 10:55 am:

    Doesn’t Cullerton get crushed in a conference committee?

    Yes, the Senate will still have to approve whatever comes out of the conference committee, but if I am the Sen Dems, I wouldn’t want to head into a conference committee when the other 3 caucuses are against me.


  3. - Loop Lady - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 10:57 am:

    God I hope so…this is just unbelievable…I know that State employees will pay for legislative malfeasance, but we need a solution yesterday…


  4. - Joe M - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:07 am:

    I don’t know much about conference committee procedures. But from the Illinois Legislative glossary at: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/glossary.asp
    they give this definition of a conference committee:

    Conference Committee
    An even number of legislators, 5 from the Senate and 5 from the House of Representatives, who attempt to resolve differences between versions of a specific bill or joint resolution passed by their respective bodies. The conference committee reports recommendations back to the General Assembly for further action.


  5. - Bud - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:07 am:

    There’s hasn’t been a conference committee in some time. 2000, 2001 maybe.


  6. - low level - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:10 am:

    @dave - perhaps, but it might also provide cover for some in his caucus to support the stronger version.


  7. - Give Me A Break - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:19 am:

    The good old conference committee, now there is something from the past. Remember when the state budget was a conference committee report?


  8. - Downstater - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:26 am:

    Madigan must have read the poll results concerning his daughter and read the press releases by Bill Daley.
    SB 1 or something close to it will be the right solution to an improved financial picture in Illinois.


  9. - Makandadawg - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 11:27 am:

    So when would a report from the conference committee come back to the GA for action? Are there any deadlines that matter?


  10. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 12:23 pm:

    Finding the “conference committee” was the Great Snipe Hunt pulled on interns back in the day.


  11. - Norseman - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 12:36 pm:

    Over the last couple of days, I’ve seen some uniformed comments that come from folks who think the conference committee is akin to the electoral college in that if you have three caucuses approve, then it is approved. Espousing this as a means to overcome Senate Dems position. This is not how it works. Each chamber’s majority gets 3 out of 5 conference committee members. If a majority of the conference members sign (6), then it’s filed with the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House and then brought up for a vote. I rarely saw an actual conference committee meeting. Most of the time, the sponsor after talking with the opposite chamber sponsor and a few key solons has a staffer prepare a report which then gets circulated. If the first conference committee is voted down, then a second can be tried. It that is voted down, then the process is done.

    Consideration of conference committees fall within the deadlines set by the chamber’s leadership.


  12. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 12:42 pm:

    ===Doesn’t Cullerton get crushed in a conference committee?===

    See Norseman’s comment. They may get outvoted in a conference committee, but they can still vote it down on the floor.


  13. - South Suburban Voter - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 12:53 pm:

    Rich,
    If they pass pension reform in July what would be the effective date?


  14. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:00 pm:

    === backed off a bit ===

    Chisel this date in stone.

    The times they are a’changing.


  15. - Bill White - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:03 pm:

    === If they pass pension reform in July what would be the effective date? ===

    If by 3/5ths majorities, whenever they want.

    If by simple majority no earlier than June 1, 2014.


  16. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:04 pm:

    The question becomes:

    Did the Speaker do this because he felt it was the right move for the state?

    Or because he thinks it might take pressure off the Attorney General to provide a legal opinion on the proposal(s)?

    Doubtful it works if his motivation is the latter. She’ll still be pressed to follow precedent and statute on a potentially unconstitutional proposal.

    Time will tell.


  17. - low level - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:05 pm:

    Yes- if anyone cares to, a look at the journals from either chamber towards the end of Spring session (which changed in 1995) will show many votes on “Approve Conference Committee Report #1″ aka CCR

    No guarantee either chamber would approve, although you would think (hope) that whatever emerged would have enough votes to be approved. That is where the 3 of 4 caucus observation probably comes in.


  18. - In the know - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:32 pm:

    And I remember the HGOP days where conference committee reports were placed in drawers, the rules for staffers, never let the copy leave your cold dead hands! Seriously, wouldn’t this be a chance for the GOP both Senate AND House, to wrest control from Speaker? I mean really, he’s committed to this process so he can’t very easily
    “pocket veto” the CCR, so IF they suddenly shifted towards Cullerton, they could hand Speaker is only truly public defeat in….well. decades. Am I missing something here? I think THAT was why the Speaker was concerned about the CCR process, lack of control.


  19. - Norseman - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 1:49 pm:

    === That is where the 3 of 4 caucus observation probably comes in. ===

    If that one caucus happens to be the Sen. Dems, it’s as dead as a doornail.


  20. - wishbone - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 2:39 pm:

    “I’ve seen some uniformed comments…”

    Ah, those comments all dressed up in uniforms and standing at attention.


  21. - Rudy - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 2:56 pm:

    I hope our Senate Dems remain independent-minded, despite all the pressure and threats they must be getting. They sat down with the primary affected interest group–the union–and negotiated a compromise position–the original SB2404. They should now just keep their word.


  22. - low level - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 3:23 pm:

    @ Norseman - With 40 votes, clearly the SDems aren’t going to get rolled or any other such thing - no matter how it was done

    Rather, that is the strength of the conference idea. A chance for all involved - esp the SDems - to find a solution, or at least ad much pf a consensus as possible that can move us forward on this very serious issue.


  23. - low level - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 3:25 pm:

    @ Rudy Right - they should go with that and we can have special sessions until Oct 31


  24. - Ruby - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 3:44 pm:

    On the bright side, the stock market and therefore the state pension investments continue to outperform all expectations for an improved economic outlook for the fiscal year ending July 1st 2013. We were in much worse shape when the Wall Street bankers plunged us into a deep recession five years ago.


  25. - Norseman - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 3:45 pm:

    === With 40 votes, clearly the SDems aren’t going to get rolled or any other such thing - no matter how it was done

    Rather, that is the strength of the conference idea. A chance for all involved - esp the SDems - to find a solution, or at least ad much pf a consensus as possible that can move us forward on this very serious issue. ===

    LL, conference committees are such an important consensus building tool, it hasn’t been used since the 94th General Assembly - that I could find. Back in the old days when this was a frequently used action, it didn’t have any consensus building strength. As I mentioned, most of the conference reports I worked on didn’t involve any face-to-face meeting of the conferees.

    I don’t know why you feel the need to romanticize this action. The only thing to take from it is that the leaders decided on a procedural process.


  26. - low level - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 4:09 pm:

    LOL - not Romanticizing anything. In fact, as a lifelong Dem, I find nothing about pensions to be romantic.

    It just seems like something that might work better than what was originally planned for the special session. From what the original plan was, it looked as if we might get Special Sessions #596. This may work.


  27. - Dude Abides - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 4:21 pm:

    If the Conference Committee results in passing a bill that is more onerous to employees and retirees than SB2404 is it safe to say that the Union will take it to court and there won’t a decision until next year?


  28. - dupage dan - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 4:29 pm:

    So, if a bill comes out of the committee that is approved by both chambers, does that mean that PQs call for a special session was a good thing to do? Does he get the props for that? Will his approval ratings surge? Will he sign it into law or AV the thing to death? Stay tuned…….


  29. - Bobbysox - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 4:32 pm:

    Credit will be short-lived when whatever they come up with (if they can pass it) is found to be unconstitutional.


  30. - dupage dan - Tuesday, Jun 18, 13 @ 4:44 pm:

    There was a suggestion that MJM is looking for cover when his tough bill is declared unconstitutional after PQ signs it into law - the whole idea that he can blame it on the SC and that clears the decks for LM to rise to the gov mansion and MJM can muscle another tax hike to pay for the whole thing. Sounds tidy but then these conspiracy theories usually do.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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