Friday, August 24, 2012

Illinois, public unions, and pension liabilities, Pt. 1

One thing the experience thus far in Illinois tells us is that the "hogs at the trough" will drive the cities, counties, and states into bankruptcy--completely disregarding the "public interest" and even their own "self-interest" as eventually the "trough runs dry"--

Illinois fails to act on public pensions in special session - James B. Kelleher - Reuters 7:43 p.m. CDT, August 17, 2012 -"SPRINGFIELD, Illinois (Reuters) - The Illinois legislature failed on Friday to take any action to fix the state's woefully underfunded public retirement system because of fierce opposition from unions and concern about the response of voters in the November elections. Democratic Governor Pat Quinn had called lawmakers to the special one-day session to reform the most underfunded state pension system in the nation with $83 billion in liabilities. But negotiations quickly collapsed amid partisan bickering, with Quinn accusing minority Republicans of blocking reform and Republican Senate Leader Christine Radogno saying Quinn had failed to lead. The predicament of Illinois is the latest example of a nationwide problem of ballooning costs on pensions for government workers, such as teachers, as the population ages. State and local governments are facing tough decisions on how to cut pension costs that are taking a huge bite out of budgets. Illinois' financial condition is among the worst in the United States, on a par with California where three large cities have filed for bankruptcy protection, citing out-of-control pension costs. California and Illinois, the nation's most populous state and the fifth most populous, respectively, have some of the lowest credit ratings among the states. . . ."

No comments: