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Pension Reform

Chicago Pension-Cutting Plan Would Harm City Retirees, Neighborhoods

Henry Bayer | Posted 04.08.2014 | Chicago
Henry Bayer

roponents of the drastic Chicago pension cuts sought by the city have threatened a range of doomsday scenarios if their proposal is not enacted. Rather than the thoughtful, informed discussion this matter deserves, this is the equivalent of shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theater.

From Ideas to Action: Cities as Drivers of Economic Opportunity

Ben Hecht | Posted 03.21.2014 | Impact
Ben Hecht

By accelerating the ability of cities to adapt and grow, we will accelerate our nation's economic growth and competitiveness.

Don't Call It a Comeback... Yet

Emily J. Miller | Posted 04.08.2014 | Chicago
Emily J. Miller

The looming revenue collapse -- the one that will take place automatically at midnight on January 1, 2015 -- will reverse any progress we've made, and will plunge Illinois deeper into its hole.

Why Municipalities Should Look to San Jose, Not Detroit, For a Lesson in Pensions

Teague Paterson | Posted 03.23.2014 | Detroit
Teague Paterson

Judge Steven Rhodes's recent ruling in Detroit led many to believe that it's open season on worker pensions. The national media declared local governments had new legal precedent to start cutting benefits for thousands of public employees. This is exactly the wrong lesson to take away from Detroit.

Detroit's Bankruptcy Filing: Not With a Bang, But With a Thud

John Patrick Leary | Posted 03.17.2014 | Detroit
John Patrick Leary

When a federal bankruptcy judge ruled that municipal pensions are vulnerable under federal bankruptcy law, no one was surprised. Little about life in 21st-century America prepares anyone to expect a judge to stand up for public pensions.

Maybe It's Time to Find a New Word for "Reform"

Joseph A. Palermo | Posted 03.10.2014 | Politics
Joseph A. Palermo

Today, as Orwell predicted, we need a new political language. "Reform" is being used in our political discourse by the wealthy and corporate mouthpieces as code for privatizing and deregulating every public service they can get their greedy hands on.

Pension Reform Aftermath? Keep Walking Forward With Our List

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 02.03.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

We understand those concerns and the skepticism. Still, something desperately needed doing or we'd have been another two years away from another remotely achievable attempt at reform.

Tracking Changes in Pension Bill Since June

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 02.02.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Stop Making Excuses: Pass Pension Reform this Week

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 02.01.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

There's plenty for everyone to hate in the pension bill expected to get a vote tomorrow in Springfield. Sorry, ideological purists. That's why it needs to pass.

The Truth About California's Pension Slashers

Julie Gutman Dickinson | Posted 01.26.2014 | Politics
Julie Gutman Dickinson

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.

Optimism All Around for Dec. 3 Pension Debate

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 01.23.2014 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Pension Cutters Rely On Bipartisan Slogans, But Right-Wing Money

Frying Pan News | Gary Cohn | Posted 10.31.2013 | Politics

The following story was reported by Frying Pan News as part of its California Exposé investigative series, and published here in collaboration ...

Not Many Treats From the House of Illinois Government Today

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 12.31.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

We've compiled some other truly scary facts about the state's fiscal condition in today's jack-o-lantern-themed Top 10 list. We only get to do this...

Still No Pension Solution in Sight? Oh, Just Wait 'Til Next Year!

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 12.29.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

While we flush $5 million in pension costs down the toilet daily, our state politicians don't meet again until Nov. 5 for three more days.

How Congress Might Slash Your Pension

The Huffington Post | Dave Jamieson | Posted 10.22.2013 | Politics

In the coming weeks, Congress will consider legislation that would reform pension laws in a way that could slash benefits already promised to retirees...

Promise for Pension Reform?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 12.04.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Reform, Revenue, Time

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 12.01.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Take our Poll: Capitol Doors -- Sound Investment or Insane Boondoggle?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.25.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Promise Breakers: How Pew Trusts Is Helping to Gut Public Employee Pensions

Frying Pan News | Gary Cohn | Posted 09.25.2013 | Politics

The following story was reported by Frying Pan News as part of its California Exposé investigative series, and published here in collaboration ...

6 Things You Didn't Know About Bill Daley

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.20.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Eliminate 'Lite Gov' Office? Let the People Vote, Says BGA

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.16.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Pension Committee Compromise Sure to Displease

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.27.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

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.

Quinn to lawmakers: No pension bill, no pay

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 09.09.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

2014: QUINN'S BAD DAY Gov. Pat Quinn had one of the worst days of his governorship Tuesday in Springfield. First the General Assembly resoundingly rej...

Good News, but No Time to Stop Forging Pension Compromise

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 09.02.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

So, there is some good news about our worst-in-the-nation pension debt. And we will take any and all good news we can get.

Trade Policy, Economic Growth and Aging

Michael Hodin | Posted 09.02.2013 | Fifty
Michael Hodin

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.