Senate Bill 1 passed the House in May but was defeated in the Senate. Now it's back, in a different form supported by Democrat and Republican legislative leaders, for a possible vote today in Springfield.
The initiative would not only cut the retirement benefits of future public sector workers, but of current government employees as well. Should the measure make it to the ballot and prevail, that provision will surely trigger a bitter legal fight.
If you're among the millions of Illinoisans sick to death of the words "pensions reform," here's some good news: It's looking more likely than ever that the General Assembly will act on a bill in two weeks that'll get those words out of the daily news cycle and into the courts.
Senate President John Cullerton is getting behind a pension reform compromise bill being hammered out by the General Assembly's special, 10-member conference committee that has been working on a bill since June.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel came into office warning that the city needed to prepare for its "day of reckoning" on pension debt. But now that pension reform in Springfield has bogged down, Emanuel wants to push that day well into the future.
Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin is a staunch defender of the state Capitol refurbishing project that cost more than $50 million and included historically correct copper doors that cost $670,000.
When Bill Daley bowed out of the governor's race this week, we lost not only an exciting contested Democratic primary. We also lost one of the most potentially colorful candidates in recent election history.
Gov. Pat Quinn has sought to cast his race against Bill Daley for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination as a case of the populist who fights for the little guy (Quinn) vs. the "big shot" who has traveled in elite political and business circles.
There is one thing I am absolutely, 100 percent sure about when it comes to the pension bill being hammered out by the Illinois General Assembly's conference committee: Whatever it is, both sides will find plenty to hate about it.
It is unfortunate that the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership has attracted only minimal attention. Done right, it can set the foundation for lucrative trade partnerships in the 21st century while also helping turn the global aging population into a social and economic asset.
On a range of issues, our state faces tough problems that can only be solved by stakeholders and elected officials working together. The new pension reform legislation, Senate Bill 2404, shows the way.