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Rauner’s Budget Sets Sight On State’s Pension Costs

USA 5 days ago CBS Chicago 7

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — Gov. Bruce Rauner Wednesday unveiled his budget proposal for the upcoming year, and there’s already partisan disagreement about what the spending plan means for the state.

Make no mistake — Rauner’s budget message includes a call for an income tax cut and controlling some state spending. He’s also proposing the Chicago Public Schools, suburban and downstate school districts pay more of their pension costs, thus saving the state more than $1 billion.

“We need to move pension costs to people who do the buying, and make them responsible for the paying, too,” the governor said. “If we do this realignment, we can eliminate the $2 billion defect in the budget you passed last summer, we can avoid new taxes, we can fund top priorities.”

By doing so, Rauner said the state could pay down its backlog of bills.

“Under the current system, they have no incentive to manage costs because the state picks them up — no matter what they are. When people are responsible for paying the bill, there will be plenty of incentive to lower the costs,” Rauner said.

But school districts still rely on property taxes to fund their programs, so higher costs for them could have an impact.


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