The Illinois Policy Institute is the latest to introduce a pension plan in Springfield. (photo by Zach Dietmeier/WJBC)
By Dave Dahl
SPRINGFIELD - A pension proposal to convert the state’s systems to something similar to a 401 (k) is up for discussion in a House committee.
Those members heard about, but did not vote on, a bill backed by the right-leaning Illinois Policy Institute.
“I think this is the most moral bill out there,” said the IPI vice president of policy, Ted Dabrowski. “It ensures that whatever state workers have earned to date, they get to keep, and we protect the constitutionally earned benefits of state workers and current retirees.”
State Rep. Mike Zalewski (D-Riverside) is not convinced that the “defined contribution” plan works best. “What the actuaries who run the systems are saying to us is there’s no comparison, and you’re taking a vehicle that is designed to be a tax shelter, and you’re converting it into a retirement vehicle.”
The IPI says the bill would cut the state’s unfunded pension liability in half – and eliminate it by 2045.
H.B. 3303 is in the House Personnel and Pensions Committee.