Posts Tagged ‘state pension’

A tale of two states: Illinois vs. Wisconsin in the public pension debate

The dividing line in the national debate over the future of public-sector unions can be found between the Land of Lincoln and its neighbor to the north.

The story of Illinois and Wisconsin is a tale of two very different states.

Wisconsin, led by Gov. Scott Walker and majority Republicans, took on public-sector unions and won in the pursuit of balancing a $3.6 billion state budget shortfall in 2011.

Illinois, led by Democrats with a veto-proof supermajority in the Legislature and Democrat Pat Quinn in the governor’s mansion (at least occasionally), have long coddled the public unions to which they and their campaign war chests are beholden. Consequently, the state faces billions of dollars in unpaid bills and unfunded pension liabilities for current public employees of about $130 billion.

Wisconsin’s economic prospects have vastly improved. . . .

Read more by Benjamin Yount and M.D. Kittle at Watchdog.org

Illinois Governor suspends lawmakers’ salaries in pension stalemate

Accelerating an increasingly bitter feud with the General Assembly, Gov. Pat Quinn suspended the pay of state lawmakers Wednesday, saying he believed the best way for legislators to reach a long-sought fix to Illinois’ massive public worker pension debt was to “hit them in the wallet.”

Read more by Rick Pearson at the Chicago Tribune

A Wisconsin plan for Illinois?


By Scott Walker

June 29, 2012

All too often political leaders have been afraid to tell the truth about the costs associated with pension, health care and other entitlement obligations. It is time for politicians to own up to these fiscal challenges.

As is the case in Illinois, the truth is often sobering. I know the feeling. When I became governor in Wisconsin, the state faced a $3.6 billion deficit, was hemorrhaging jobs and had high unemployment.

While I’m not an expert on the fiscal challenges facing Illinois, based on media reports I’ve read and stories I’ve heard from visiting your state, there are major budgetary issues that need to be resolved. Illinois faces a fiscal and economic crisis.

Read more by Gov. Scott Walker at Chicago Tribune

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