Illinois House sends pension package to Senate
SPRINGFIELD – When the Illinois House Thursday approved Speaker Michael Madigan’s plan to cut teachers’ and state workers’ retirement benefits, it became more clear than ever their retirement future hinges on a conflict between two of the state’s most powerful Democrats. Senate President John Cullerton has blasted Madigan’s approach as unconstitutional and is working with union leaders on a …
Madigan muscles through pension-reform; unions balk, Senate reception uncertain
There’s a political axiom at the Statehouse that embodies House Speaker Michael Madigan’s record-setting tenure as the Illinois House’s overlord: Never bet against the speaker. And so it goes with the pension-reform package that the Southwest Side Democrat muscled out of a House committee on Wednesday – putting it on a clear track toward Gov. Pat Quinn’s desk …
Madigans pension plan speaks volumes
People have been waiting for months for Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan to take the lead on the public pension issue. Michael Madigan finally laid his cards on the table when he introduced pension legislation Tuesday. Or did he? One never knows with the inscrutable Madigan, who operates by the theory that he who says least has the most power. Perhaps the most one can say is that Madigan…
State to public unions: Guaranteed, limited pension checks
By Benjamin Yount | Illinois Watchdog – Public employee unions in Illinois seem willing to play chicken with what may be Democrats’ final offer on pension reform. Powerful House Speaker Mike Madigan D-Chicago, on Wednesday detailed a plan he calls a comprehensive fix for Illinois’ worst-in-the-nation pension system.
House passes pension fix; bill heads to Senate
SPRINGFIELD — State workers, teachers and university employees would pay more toward their pensions and get less in benefits when they retire under a plan adopted Thursday in the Illinois House. The proposal, approved by a 62-51 margin, now heads to the Senate, where it faces an uncertain future. “Obviously, it does not make everybody happy,” said House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago.
Illinois House Passes Pension Reform Bill
The Illinois House approved a comprehensive pension-reform plan for the first time on Thursday after years of talks. The House voted 62-51 Thursday to advance the measure — SB1 — sponsored by House Speaker Michael Madigan. The Chicago Democrat’s proposal is designed to close a $97 billion deficit that dogs the state’s pension plans.
Madigans Pension Bill Passes A Full House Vote
House Speaker Michael Madigan’s 227-page amendment to SB1, House Amendment 1, passed the chamber this afternoon by a 61-51 vote, with two legislators voting present. The bill needed 60 votes to pass. The legislation, if passed by the Senate and signed by Gov. Pat Quinn, would apply to four out of the state’s five pension systems.
House Speaker: ‘Solvency, stability’ in pension plan
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Labor leaders threatened a lawsuit Wednesday over House Speaker Michael Madigan’s pension-reform proposal to lower the retirement benefits of public employees in Illinois, but a committee advanced the plan anyway. Madigan pledged a vote Thursday on the House floor after the Personnel and Pensions Committee approved it, 9-1.
House doesn’t have ‘Plan B’ for pension reform
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Rep. Elaine Nekritz says the Illinois House does not have a “Plan B” should the courts rule a comprehensive pension-reform plan is unconstitutional. House lawmakers voted 62-51 Thursday to send the measure to the Senate. Nekritz is a Democrat from Northbrook.
Quinn praises Madigan-backed pension plan
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Gov. Pat Quinn says Illinois House lawmakers have taken the “biggest step to date” toward restoring the state’s financial stability. The House approved a pension overhaul on Thursday that requires state employees to pay 2% more toward their retirements. They would also have to delay retirement and accept less-generous annual cost-of-living increases…
Illinois House adopts pension-increase limits
SPRINGFIELD — Illinois lawmakers from both parties celebrated a possible breakthrough today in their struggle to solve the multibillion-dollar pension crisis after voting to reduce and delay cost-of-living increases in state employees’ retirement pay — a step the House Republican leader heralded as “the meat and potatoes of pension reform.”
Simon wants committee to study school funding
Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon is encouraging lawmakers to create a committee to study how Illinois funds education and recommend ways to improve it. In a statement Thursday Simon says the General Assembly should pass a resolution sponsored by Sen. Andy Manar, a Democrat from Bunker Hill. The resolution would create an Advisory Committee on Education Funding.
Illinois House takes first major vote on pension reform
The Illinois House of Representatives took a major vote Thursday afternoon on pension reform. Many lawmakers said the plan is critical to the future of state government. Shortly before House members passed the latest pension plan by a vote of 62-51, Speaker Michael Madigan (D-22) spoke about the proposal’s importance to the basic functions of government.
UPDATE: Rockford workers react to pension reform passing IL House
Michael Madigan, IL House Speaker urges lawmakers to pass pension reform. Cyndy Janssen works in her classroom. Cyndy Janssen ROCKFORD (WREX) – “I was always investing to supplement what was coming from the state but now I’m worried that I don’t have enough saved.” Illinois takes what some call its biggest step toward fixing the state’s massive budget crisis.
Public Pensions’ Fate Rests Largely With Divided Democratic Leaders | WUIS – My Source for News
A plan that will leave state employees and teachers with reduced retirement benefits made it out of the Illinois House Thursday, potentially paving the way for the pension overhaul that has thus far eluded lawmakers. But it also ignites a face-off between two of the state’s top Democrats — with the potential to keep a pension overhaul as elusive as it’s ever been. …
Chicago Well Represented at Senate Gun Hearing
At Sen. Dick Durbin’s request, people with family members or friends who were victims of gun violence stood during a packed Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing on Tuesday.
School district reaches contract agreement
Negotiators reached a tentative agreement Thursday for a new contract between the Charleston school district and its teachers union. A joint announcement from the board and the Charleston Education Association teachers union said the agreement was reached during the eighth session of negotiations.
Changes to your child’s sex education classes
KFVS – Students in Illinois could soon be learning a lot more in their sex education classes then some parents and school leaders want them too. The Comprehensive Sex Education bill as it’s being labeled by Illinois Lawmakers in Springfield, has some very definitive language in it. HB 2675 could change the material in your child’s sex education classes, the changes would be more graphic material.
Unit 5 names officials; Niehaus to retire in 2015
NORMAL — The McLean County Unit 5 school board has approved several personnel changes and learned that Superintendent Gary Niehaus intends to retire in two years. Laura O’Donnell, the Evans Junior High School principal, will become director of secondary education, starting July 1 with a salary of $91,800. She has been an educator for 18 years, including as a principal at Olympia South Elementary …
New online program creates automatic classroom communication
A new online program, designed by Illinois Wesleyan professor Mark Liffiton, will allow students to give instant feedback to teachers during class when the student does or does not understand something. The program was created because of how many students are hesitant to raise their hand and ask a teacher a question during classes. “I think part of the reason that students often don’t…
CPS quietly lowers its estimated cost savings from closing 54 schools
Chicago’s school district will not be saving as much by closing 54 schools as it originally told the public. When it announced the closings, Chicago Public Schools said it would save $560 million in capital expenses over the next 10 years by closing schools and avoiding repairs and upgrades on those buildings. Now, the district is revising that cost savings number downward. It says it was …
The community of Roxbury had high hopes for its newest public school back in 2003. There were art studios, a dance room, even a theater equipped with cushy seating. A pilot school for grades K-8, Orchard Gardens was
NBCNews.com – Bob Kittredge, 73, and his wife drove from Port St. Lucie, Fla., this week to attend the National Rifle Association’s annual convention.
Ted Nugent accuses U.S. schools of “brainwashing jihad”
Examiner.com – “Like the brainwashing jihad running amok among government goons and most of America’s media,” Nugent wrote, “our social engineering indoctrination camps (formerly known as the public school system) clearly have it in for guns. “This is not surprising since these camps are controlled by the National Education Association, which is the largest contributor to the bigger/more-control government-approved party (formerly known as the Democratic Party).”
U.S. employers added 165,000 jobs in April, and hiring was much stronger in the previous two months than first thought. The gains trimmed the unemployment rate to a four-year low of 7.5 percent. Here’s the story.
Crain’s has found a set of twentysomethings who defy any stereotypes of their generation: Lazy? Tough to manage? Emotionally fragile? Not these Millennials. Check out the video preview of our inaugural feature that introduces the next generation of Chicago’s leaders.
After a significant delay caused by a bitter dispute involving the developer and the Terra Foundation for American Art, Tommy Bahama finally opens its store inside the Ritz-Carlton Residences. Crain’s has the backstory on the modern 4,000-square-foot space.
As we rush to reap the benefits of new technology, the potential damage from breakdowns, intentional misuse and unintended consequences is rising just as fast, writes Crain’s Joe Cahill. Recent tech problems that interfered with the markets underscore the need for corporations to invest in protections, as well.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s annual economic interest statement shows his connections to Hollywood entertainment moguls, millionaire venture capitalists and the like. Many of the gift-givers are also major campaign donors, the Tribune reports.
A shareholder in OfficeMax Inc. sued to block its acquisition by larger rival Office Depot Inc., calling the proposed $1.2 billion all-stock deal “grossly inadequate,” according to Reuters.
A weaker Maker’s Mark? Anxious whiskey drinkers apparently flocked to liquor stores before a less-strong version of the alcoholic beverage hit shelves. Though the company quickly reversed the plan, the rush boosted sales. And as the Wall Street Journal reports, Beam Inc. officials say they can’t sustain those growth rates.
CPS parent Ian Belknap takes issue with what he calls the double-talk of presumptive Illinois gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner, who reportedly used his influence to get his daughter into Walter Payton College Prep High School. Read his Crain’s op-ed here.
McDonald’s continues to be the most visited retail business in America, beating out Wal-Mart and Walgreen’s, with 49 percent of Americans over the age of 14 walking through the Golden Arches in March, according to a study by the analytics firm Placed Insights. Find more at the Huffington Post.
The New York Times Magazine profiles Ikram Goldman, owner of Ikram in Chicago, and looks at her outsized influence in the New York Fashion world. Here is the story.
|The Evil Brain: What Lurks Inside a Killer’s Mind|
|As tragedies like Boston and Newtown mount, scientists and criminologists are trying harder than ever to understand the minds behind the crimes|
|U.S. Employers Add 165K Jobs, Rate Falls to 7.5%|
|Legalize Marijuana and Other Ways U.S.-Mexico Can Win Drug War|
|Viewpoint: Plan B Is Very Misunderstood|
|Emergency contraception is not “the abortion pill.” Like other forms of birth control, it prevents fertilization in the first place|
|Cannibalism at Jamestown: Listening to the Bones|
|She was thrown out, or at least her head was, with the remains of other animals — dogs, horses, squirrels — and other debris that the colonists discarded during the winter of 1609-1610|
The Washington Post
Intel for investors: What’s going on behind closed doors in Washington
The Washington-based firm Height Securities is a small player in a burgeoning financial field where companies seek to acquire valuable information about even the most minor of federal actions and provide it to investors.
Biden ponders a 2016 bid, but a promotion to the top job seems to be a long shot
When Vice President Biden arrives in South Carolina on Friday to headline a sold-out dinner for state Democrats, here’s what you can expect to go down:
For sale at gun shows: Stuff that has nothing to do with guns
Vera Torres went to the Nation’s Gun Show in Chantilly last month looking for a handgun. She left with Amazing Wonder Tops.
Editorial Board: The legal mess on emergency contraception
WHEN U.S. District Judge Edward Korman ruled last month that the government had to allow unrestricted, over-the-counter access to the emergency contraceptive Plan B, it seemed as though the Obama administration had stumbled its way out of a political quandary.
Guantanamo hunger strike renews debates over indefinite detention
Twice a day at the military detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, guards take a group of detainees from their cells, one at a time, to a camp clinic or a private room on their block.
Word of the Day for Friday, May 3, 2013
ratiocination \rash-ee-os-uh-NEY-shuhn, -oh-suh-, rat-ee-\, noun:
the process of logical reasoning.