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State

Nekritz files cost-shift legislation for higher ed

SPRINGFIELD – Details on a proposal to make Illinois' public institutions of higher education start picking up retirement costs are materializing.

Rep. Elaine Nekritz filed legislation Thursday outlining that state universities and community colleges would begin paying a half of 1 percent of payroll costs into the pension system annually. That would start in fiscal year 2015 and last all costs are assumed. The proposal was expected in committee Thursday.

Illinois pays retirement costs for universities and most local school districts. Making them pay has been controversial and isn't included in pending pension overhauls. The heads of universities and community colleges agreed to it this month.

It's unclear if lawmakers will extend the idea to school districts before Friday's adjournment.

Republicans claim it'll raise property tax rates.

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The bill is SB1687.

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