Ill. House OKs Chicago pension overhaul

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois House has approved a plan to overhaul two Chicago pension programs that officials say could otherwise be out of money in little more than a decade.

The House voted 73-41 Tuesday on the plan proposed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel for municipal-employee and laborers pension programs covering 57,000 workers and retirees. It hinges on a property tax increase of $750 million over five years to cut in half a $20 billion debt within 40 years.

The legislation by House Speaker Michael Madigan overcame earlier resistance after the Chicago Democrat removed language mentioning tax increase. Opponents feared they'd be blamed for a Chicago tax increase.

Without the language, many agreed to support the plan, saying Chicago could not be allowed to go bankrupt.

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The bill is SB1922.

Online: http://www.ilga.gov .