Ill. House adopts pension-increase limits
SPRINGFIELD – Illinois lawmakers from both parties celebrated a possible breakthrough Thursday in their struggle to solve the multibillion-dollar pension crisis after voting to reduce and delay cost-of-living increases in state employees’ retirement pay — a step the House Republican leader heralded as “the meat and potatoes of pension reform.”
Although major obstacles remain, the 66-50 vote in the House generated newfound optimism for a deal because of the money the plan would save. Still, the measure’s fate remains uncertain in the Senate, which a day earlier rejected a comprehensive package of legislation that includes a similar plan.
The action signaled the third pension measure to win approval within a week in the House, which has been breaking the tangled issue into pieces – rather than attempting a vote on an across-the-board package all at once – to determine which ones have the best chance of being approved.