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State

Chicago school's bid for loan from pension fund shelved

CHICAGO – The Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers' Pension Fund have ended discussions on a school district proposal to borrow $500 million from the pension to avoid additional layoffs and classroom cuts.

In a joint statement, the school district and pension fund officials announced Friday the end of discussions on a proposed fiscal year 2016 pension payment schedule, which was part of the borrowing deal. Officials didn't say why talks about the borrowing fell apart or whether they might resume in the future.

The district recently paid a $634 million pension bill that officials said it couldn't afford. As a result, the nation's third-largest school district plans 1,400 layoffs, scaled-back maintenance and reduced transportation.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel blames state legislators for worsening the situation and says a property tax increase is up for consideration.

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