CHICAGO (WBBM) – Jim Tobin with the National Taxpayers United of Illinois says the plan is to raise the income tax to pay off a $15 billion dollar loan but he says there’s more to it.
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“What the governor isn’t telling us is that the $15 billion dollars will be thrown into the state pension fund for thousands and thousands of government employees. So they’ll raise our income tax up to 67%, take half that money and use it to pay back the $15 billion dollar loan plus five billion in interest and then they other half will be used to finance pay raises, and to hire additional state employees,” according to Tobin.
Tobin says the answer is to have current state employees just contribute more to their pension funds and pay half of their retirement health care. As for the future, he says, pensions have to end for all new government hires.
Tobin adds, “Put them all in social security and 401K’s like everyone else in the private sector. The pensions have to end for the new government hires. This will end the pension problem in the long run.”
A spokesperson for the governor says he’s considering various options for dealing with the deficit and that could include a one percent income tax increase.
Large-scale borrowing faces a tough road. The Democratic-dominated Senate has been unable to scrape together enough votes to borrow $3.7 billion to pay this year’s pension obligation.