12/08/2014 02:48 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Illinois Municipalities Could Face Bankruptcy Issues

With Detroit having filed for bankruptcy and dozens of Illinois municipalities facing financial calamity over pension obligations they can't meet, a natural question is whether Illinois cities will follow Detroit's example. But the Better Government Association reports that it will take some legal wrangling before Illinois cities, towns and villages even are allowed to pursue bankruptcy.The Better Government Association says Illinois municipalities could face fiscal troubles next.

From the BGA:

At the very least, these [municipal] leaders are now, more than ever before, openly questioning if bankruptcy is a viable option to reorganize or slash their growing financial obligations, including public pensions for retirees and current workers.

Technically, Illinois municipalities can't file for bankruptcy, although a pair of small downstate towns actually did, but they flew far under the radar and went though the process virtually undetected.

Still, efforts are emerging to formally sanction bankruptcy, and among the most outspoken proponents is the mayor of Rockford, the state's third largest city and one of its most debt-ridden.

See how these municipal bankruptcies could play out at Reboot Illinois.

One unit of local government, DuPage County, is facing troubles with its community college. College of DuPage may have been paying its president an illegally high salary for two years.

From Adam Andrzejewski:

Governor Pat Quinn stopped a $20 million state construction grant to the College of DuPage last June when a troubling email surfaced from President Robert Breuder to the Board of Trustees. The email outlined a political strategy helpful to the incumbent governor in an effort to procure the millions of dollars. Furthermore, Breuder suggested "bank it until we figure out how to use it, and then building something." It was the first in a long line of irregularities uncovered during our seven-month investigation of the $300 million-per-year community college.

See the details at Reboot Illinois.


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