A Sunday meeting of the Illinois House accomplished little, but legislators still say they can still tackle the state's pension problem before the General Assembly adjourns for good on Wednesday, including Democratic Representative Elaine Nekritz of Northbrook, who helped author a proposal scheduled to be heard in a legislative committee this afternoon. The measure would require state employees, teachers and university workers to put 2 percent more of their paychecks into their retirement plans. Workers won't get yearly benefit increases until they're 67, and current retirees would have to go six years without those cost-of-living bumps. Nekritz admits unions are not on board. And even if the House advances the plan, it could be setup for failure in the Senate, where the President prefers a different method of bringing down the state's pension costs. House Speaker Mike Madigan says differences are to be expected:
"I think the ke consideration is how can we get this done."
The Speaker says he's bargaining in good faith, and is optimistic a plan will pass. With days left in the legislative session Illinois continues to labor under a nearly $100 billion of pension debt.
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