The Illinois House has approved a stripped-down pension plan that could delay and reduce cost-of-living increases for retirees and future retirees. The bill is sponsored by House Speaker Michael Madigan and comes out of a laborious process where lawmakers are addressing the pension problem piece by piece instead of a total overhaul at once. House members voted in favor 66-50 on Thursday. It's the third scaled-back bill pension bill the House has recently approved. Today's proposal says that no cost-of-living increases can be taken until retirees reach 67 or five years after retirement and applies COLAs only to the first $25,000 of an annual pension. Illinois has nearly $100 billion in unfunded pension liability because for years lawmakers either skipped or shorted payments.
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