Illinois lawmakers skeptical about pension deal this spring

AP News
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Posted: May 13, 2015 5:45 PM
Illinois lawmakers skeptical about pension deal this spring

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Illinois lawmakers are expressing skepticism the Legislature can pass a new pension overhaul this spring despite pressure from Gov. Bruce Rauner and major credit rating agencies.

Democratic Rep. Elaine Nekritz is chairwoman of the House pension committee, which held a hearing on Wednesday. She calls the odds of a deal before the session ends May 31 "slim."

The Illinois Supreme Court last week ruled a 2013 pension overhaul unconstitutional.

Rauner wants legislators to approve a proposal to let workers keep benefits earned to date but move them to a less-generous plan going forward. He also wants a constitutional amendment to allow future benefits to be cut.

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Senate President John Cullerton is pitching his own plan. But his spokeswoman says "what's important is to get it right," not a specific timeline.