The costs of state pension plans are much in the news. Generally, people lump together these unfunded liabilities and make alarming claims that all state plans are about to go bankrupt. The evidence, though, suggests otherwise. On the other hand, looking just at pension plans and just at states doesn’t give the full picture of costs facing states and localities.
Every American deserves to retire with dignity.
However, due to the shift from pensions to 401(k)s, a secure & dignified retirement isn’t a reality for millions of working people.
401(k)s were never designed to be the primary retirement savings tool for working families – learn why in our latest video:
Illinois State Treasurer’s Office, Springfield, is searching for an investment and administrative consultant for the Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program, said Greg Rivara, spokesman, in an e-mail.
The Illinois Legislature approved a bill in December 2014 to establish the Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program, an auto-enrollment, payroll-deducted retirement savings account for certain private-sector employees whose employers do not offer retirement plans outside of Social Security.
New Jersey became the state with the worst-funded public pension system in the U.S. in 2015, followed closely by Kentucky and Illinois.
The Garden State had $135.7 billion less than it needs to cover all the benefits that have been promised, a $22.6 billion increase over the prior year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Illinois’s unfunded pension liabilities rose to $119.1 billion from $111.5 billion.
The two were among states whose retirement systems slipped further behind as rock-bottom bond yields and lackluster stock-market gains caused investment returns to fall short of targets. The median state pension had 74.5 percent of assets needed to meet promised benefits, down from 75.6 percent the prior year. The decline followed two years of gains. The shortfall for states overall was $1.1 trillion in 2015.
If you work for a school or nonprofit of any sort, there is a decent chance that your workplace retirement savings plan is not as good as it could be — if you are lucky enough to have one at all.
While employees of universities and big hospitals often have reasonably attractive plans, public schoolteachers, charity workers and many employees of religious organizations who examine their retirement accounts frequently find that the investment choices are mediocre and the fees are too high.
Opening Ceremonies at the 2016 IPPFA MidAmerican Pension Conference.
By Ted Dabrowski, Craig Lesner, John Klingner
Tax-hike proponents claim there’s no way to fix Illinois’ chronic budget problems without more money. They want Illinoisans to believe the state’s tax revenues simply aren’t enough to cover the cost of government.
But tax revenues aren’t the real problem. Illinois’ perennial budget crises stem from the state’s persistent overspending and misplaced spending priorities. The 2016 budget gridlock is the culmination of years of fiscal mismanagement under Illinois House of Representatives Speaker Mike Madigan’s leadership.
Through its recent decisions, the Illinois Supreme Court delivered a clear message that pension reform efforts seeking to unilaterally reduce benefits simply cannot be squared with the Illinois Constitution’s pension clause. That outcome was hardly surprising given the plain language, drafting history, and prior court decisions interpreting the pension clause.
Now that the Illinois Supreme Court has clearly reaffirmed that welching is simply not an option the General Assembly may pursue, the question becomes what can legislators do?
By: J. Scott Moody
Taxpayers, families and business owners have been fleeing Illinois for decades in search of a friendlier environment to put down roots or grow a business. New data from the Internal Revenue Service for the 2010 tax year show that Illinois had the second-worst loss of people and income nationally.
By Michael Lucci
Illinois is one of a handful of states that is still struggling to put people back to work after the Great Recession. Just consider: Though Illinois now has 39,000 more private-sector payrolls jobs now than it had before the Great Recession began, there are 110,000 fewer Illinoisans working than before the recession began.
Illinois’ recovery has been tripped up by anti-jobs regulations, staggering debt problems and painful tax hikes. While surrounding states have attracted new investments and jobs growth, hard-working families in Illinois have been left behind because the state simply hasn’t put its house in order. This has resulted in weak growth and a struggling jobs recovery likely driven by part-time work.