* Gov. Bruce Rauner distributed a handout to legislators before his State of the State address yesterday. Click here to read it. Here’s something from the handout that he didn’t talk about yesterday…
Restructure the motor fuel tax to appropriately invest in infrastructure.
* He also didn’t touch on this topic…
Reform teacher tenure
* Nor did he bring up these…
Extend to municipalities bankruptcy protections to help turn around struggling communities.
Empower local voters to control collective bargaining issues in their local governments and take more direct responsibility for their employees’ benefits.
…Adding… The Tribune has a story about the municipal bankruptcy issue.
* He never uttered the word “pension” yesterday, but the topic was covered in his handout…
Protect historically accrued state pension benefits for retirees and current workers, while moving all current workers into the Tier 2 pension plan and/or a 401(k) for their future work. Police and firefighters should receive separate special consideration.
Pursue permanent pension relief through a constitutional amendment.
* The document also fleshes out some issues just a tiny bit more than Rauner did yesterday. For instance…
Freeze property taxes for two years by amending Illinois’ Property Tax Extension Limitation Law. The total property tax extension could not increase above the 2015 levy year, except for new construction or property in a TIF district. Voters would still be allowed to override the freeze via referendum.
That’s the first time he’s pointed to a specific path to freezing property taxes. Commenters who are knowledgeable about this topic are invited to chime in.
* Some more stuff…
Implement true workers’ compensation reform legislation that updates how injuries are apportioned to ensure employers pay for injuries that occur on the job; clarifies the definition of “traveling employees” to ensure a reasonable standard that excludes risks that would impact the general public; and implements American Medical Association guidelines when determining impairment.
Make Illinois unemployment insurance fair for beneficiaries and employers, including legislation that cracks down on benefit fraud for those who voluntarily leave employment but receive benefits and provides a more fair definition of misconduct in the workplace.
Lift the arbitrary cap on public charter schools, reduce funding disparities for public charters and provide more high-quality educational options to students through tax credit scholarships.
Eliminate unnecessary testing and institute a rigorous K-12 student growth measure, using ACT and other national metrics.
Reform the criminal code to ensure sentences are commensurate with the severity of the crime, and reduce penalties for non-violent offenses.
Launch a bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform Commission with a goal to improve public safety and reduce prison population by 25 percent in 10 years.