Friday, May 27, 2016

But they are already leaving: Rahm says guv's veto of Chicago pension bill tells taxpayers to "take a hike"

Chicago's South Side earlier
this month
Illinois state law currently prevents municipalities and other local government agencies to declare bankruptcy, which is allowed in 24 other states. Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove) proposed a bill last year to make the Prairie State the 25th, but Democrats, who are the party of government unions and not the taxpayers, oppose changing the law because union contracts can be dissected and shredded under a bankruptcy.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:
Gov. Bruce Rauner on Friday vetoed a bill that would have saved Chicago $843 million over five years and staved off what Mayor Rahm Emanuel has called an “unnecessary tax increase” — by giving the city 15 more years to ramp up to a 90 percent funding level for police and fire pensions.

Top mayoral aides were livid. They likened it to a "declaration of war" on Chicago and Emanuel, akin to President Gerald Ford flatly declaring in 1975 that he would veto any bill calling for "a federal bail-out of New York City" and instead proposing legislation that would make it easier for the city to go into bankruptcy.
After the veto, Emanuel said in a statement: "With a stroke of his pen, Bruce Rauner just told
every Chicago taxpayer to take a hike. Bruce Rauner ran for office promising to shake up Springfield, but all he's doing is shaking down Chicago residents, forcing an unnecessary $300 million property tax increase on them and using them as pawns in his failed political agenda."
But taxpayers are already taking a hike, Rahm. Chicago was the only one of the nation's biggest municipalities to lose population last year. The city's population is the lowest it's been since 1920 and Houston may knock Chicago into fourth place among US cities in a decade or so.

Rauner vetoed the bill because Chicago has been "kicking the can" down the road on pensions for decades and that such fiscal irresponsibility needs to end.


The General Assembly was able to override Rauner's video. The can gets kicked. Again.

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