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Biss to Host Pension Forum Tonight

Rep. Daniel Biss will hold a dialogue, 'The Long Road to Pension Reform: What is ‘Cost Shift’ and Why Does It Matter?', at Temple Beth Israel in Skokie at 7 p.m. Legislators return to Springfield Aug. 17 for a special pension reform session.

Among the many hotly debated topics in Springfield, legislators will attempt to reach consensus on pension reform tomorrow at a special session scheduled by Gov. Quinn.  Tonight, Rep. Biss will hold a public forum to discuss the issues. Titled "The Long Road to Pension Reform: What is 'Cost Shift' and Why Does it Matter?", the community dialogue is the most recent in a series of public forums hosted by Biss and is open to all.  The forum was originally scheduled at Wagner Farm but to accommodate mass interest from the community, the event will now be held at Temple Beth Israel in Skokie, 3601 W. Dempster.  Guest speakers include Erika Lindley, the Executive Director of ED-RED; Dick Ingram, the Executive Director of the Teachers’ Retirement System; and Louis Kosiba, Executive Director of the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund. In Glenview, pension reform was on the minds of readers when recently retired D34 announced he was leaving Glenview for a position in West Bloomfield, Mich. As part of the current system, Hill will collect his full pension from Illinois while continuing to earn a salary in Michigan. Changes in pension reform legislation could mean more dollars paid out of tax payer pockets to cover pension costs for educators like Hill.  According to the Tenth Dems website, participants can expect an "informative and lively discussion." Will you attend the forum? If you could participate in Friday's Illinois General Assembly discussion on the topic, what would you share with legislators? Share with us in the comments or sound off on Facebook!
Veda Rotman August 16, 2012 at 06:31 PM
I can't attend tonight but I would like to give my opinion. I'm retired from two corporations. Both corporations cashed to a cash balance plan before I retired (over ten years ago) which really changed my retirement income downward (instead of 100% for final pay, I was lucky to get the equivalint of 50% of 1 year's pay. I'm sure this was because of the market's downturns. Although I was unhappy with the results, it certainly saved the corporations tons of future payouts. It saved money which gave added financial stability to those corporations, which is important. I think Illinois should do the same. Illinois employees get get benefits (better than most corporations) and they get fair pay. Why not change to a cash balance plan for those 55 and under. You could also do a percentage offset of earned income. For those 55+ it would unfair to reduce their pensions so I would probably leave them alone. Conferencing with specialists in the Pension market would certainly be adviseable since working people will always want more from pensions with no regard to whether the Pension Plan can pay it. Sincerely, Veda Rotman
h m August 16, 2012 at 08:27 PM
One big problem with the state pensions is that Springfield changed the state Constitution to guarantee these pensions. From what I understand, this changed goes all the way back to the 1970's.
Joanna Schneider August 17, 2012 at 01:13 AM
Stay tuned to Patch for a story Monday recapping this evening's forum and tomorrow's special legislative session in Springfield on pension reform.
Joanna Schneider August 17, 2012 at 01:14 AM
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Veda. You'll be able to catch up on anything you missed at the forum--stay tuned to Patch for a follow-up story this Monday.

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