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Taxpayer Group: 11,000 State Retirees Get Six-Figure Pensions

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Anti-Tax Activist Calls Pension System 'Obscene, Immoral'

archive state capitol 1005 Taxpayer Group: 11,000 State Retirees Get Six Figure Pensions
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CHICAGO (CBS) – A taxpayer group that monitors the state’s pension problems said there are more retired state workers than ever drawing pensions of more than $100,000 per year.

Taxpayers United of American said more than 11,000 people receive six-figure pensions from the state, and by 2020, that number will balloon to 25,000.

The anti-tax group’s annual report also said more than 78,000 state pensioners receive more than $50,000 a year.

TUA founder Jim Tobin said, at the rate things are going, Illinois will not be able to sustain payments in the long-run.

“These people are … contributing very small amounts into their million-dollar pension payouts, and expect us – the taxpayers – to work until we drop so they can retire in their 50s and live the Life of Riley on our dollars,” Tobin said. “It’s an obscene, immoral system.”

Tobin said the pension reforms approved by the Illinois General Assembly and the governor last year are not enough. He said state workers need to pay more into their pensions and their health care premiums.

The TUA report pointed out educator Larry K. Fleming, who retired at age 55, receives more than $258,000 a year in state pensions, and stands to collect more than $11 million in his projected lifetime.

“He paid a whopping $326,000, or 2.8 percent of his estimated lifetime payout,” Tobin said.