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Legislative Leaders Now Handling Pension Reform

Nov 11, 2013

The four leaders of Illinois' General Assembly have crafted a new plan for changing the state's retirement systems.

Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno (R-Lemont) said financial analysts are still drafting estimates on how much it will save.

Credit Rich Egger

“We want to get it right and so it might take a few weeks to get numbers back and make sure everyone is satisfied with it. Obviously there are no guarantees but I'm encouraged,” Radogno said.

The latest plan combines elements from previous versions.

Employees could keep more of their paycheck upfront: they'd give one-percent less toward pensions.

But many would get a smaller payout upon retirement. How much would be determined by a formula that gets complicated.  

No longer would retirees get automatic, three-percent compounded cost-of-living bumps ever year. Instead, their benefit would be based on how long they worked for the state.

Radogno said it's designed to make sure the lowest-paid, longest-serving workers are protected from inflation upon retirement. 

The other legislative leaders are Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago), House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago), and House Minority Leader Jim Durkin (R- Western Springs).