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   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Michael Madigan's spokesman says the Illinois House speaker is withdrawing a plan to tax millionaires in the state.
   Steve Brown is the Chicago Democrat's spokesman. He said Wednesday that Madigan blames Republicans who wouldn't support the proposal. Brown says Republicans "prefer and protect millionaires over school children." Highwood Democratic state Rep. Scott Drury also expressed concerns about the plan.
   Madigan wanted to put a constitutional amendment on the November ballot that would have added a 3 percent surcharge onto incomes over $1 million. He said it would raise an estimated $1 billion annually for schools. A House committee approved the plan Thursday.
   The proposal needed a three-fifths majority in both chambers to be placed on the general election ballot.
   Republicans said the tax would hurt small businesses and farmers.
Published in Local News
Wednesday, 27 November 2013 12:38

Madigan spokesman says pension deal reached

CHICAGO (AP) - A spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan says legislative leaders have reached a deal to solve the state's $100 billion pension crisis.

Steve Brown says he was told of the agreement following a leaders meeting Wednesday.

Brown says the speaker's staff is putting together an "explanatory memo" for lawmakers and will send details of the proposed legislation to them Friday.

The leaders have been working with a proposal developed over the summer and autumn by a bipartisan committee of lawmakers. The committee plan would save the state $138 billion over 30 years.

The state's pension crisis, deemed the nation's worst, comes after lawmakers have shorted or skipped payments to its public pension funds for decades.

Both the House and Senate are being called back to meet in Springfield Dec. 3.

Published in Local News

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The estimated savings on a pension proposal backed by Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan earlier this year is nearly $25 billion less than originally thought.

   That's because the Teachers Retirement System - one of Illinois' five pension systems - says it made a mistake in its calculations. The change was outlined in a Monday letter to a bipartisan panel tasked with coming up with an approach to solving Illinois' nearly $100 billion pension crisis.

   Madigan's plan involves across-the-board cuts in benefits. It was originally touted to save Illinois about $187 billion over 30 years. However, the new estimate is about $163 billion in the same time period.

   Another plan from Senate President John Cullerton, which had union support, was estimated to save roughly $47 billion over the same timeframe.

 

Published in Local News

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