Ill. pension cost shift accord proposed
SPRINGFIELD – The top Illinois House Republican and the Democrats’ pension point person proposed another solution Wednesday to the state’s public retirement system debacle, one that signals the GOP’s first concession toward shifting teachers’ pension costs to local school districts.
Minority Leader Tom Cross of Oswego and Rep. Elaine Nekritz, a Northbrook Democrat, suggested moving the state out of funding retirement for schoolteachers and university employees, maintaining defined-benefit accounts supplemented by a 401(k)-style, defined-contribution system.
If signed into law, the idea would reduce the state’s annual contribution to five employee pension accounts by $2 billion, reduce the $96 billion funding shortfall by 30 percent, and reduce the deficit within three decades, according to Cross and Nekritz, who were joined by about a dozen other representatives and senators at a news conference outside the House chamber.
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