Governor Pat Quinn's working group on state employee pensions missed a deadline yesterday, but the governor and a member of the group say they're close to issuing a report. They're supposed to offer ideas for fixing the state's drastically underfunded pension systems. Details have been hard to come by, but House Speaker Michael Madigan says the debate has included talk of shifting some costs to public school districts and state universities:
"If you look at the annual payment, this current payment the legislature will make to the state pension systems, 78 percent of that payment goes to two systems where the members of the system never worked for the state of Illinois. They never got a paycheck from the state of Illinois."
A member of Quinn's pension working group would not discuss specifics, but says the proposal will likely affect current state employees. A different working group could also come out this week with ideas for cutting a different area of the budget, spending on health care for the poor. The governor has called for massive cuts to Medicaid.
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