GOP state Rep. Skillicorn opposes Pritzker's short-changing of retired teachers outside Chicago
Republican state Rep. Allen Skillicorn (East Dundee) fails to see the logic in Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s plan to pay more into the pension system of Chicago teachers while leaving retired teachers across the rest of the state to essentially fend for themselves.
“Another bailout for Chicago will not save the state of Illinois,” Skillicorn told McHenry Times. “To have any chance of fixing this state, we need to deal with the issue of pension reform in a real way.”
Skillicorn is convinced that Pritzker’s plan to underfund teacher pensions outside of the city by as much as $500 million falls woefully short of that standard. And he’s not alone in his criticism of the plan, with the Illinois Retired Teachers Association (IRTA) also being among the loudest critics. The IRTA argues that Pritzker’s latest stance is in complete contrast to the position he took as a candidate, when he regularly preached about his vision of paying more into all pension systems.
In all, unfunded pension liabilities in Illinois are pegged to be in the range of around $135 billion.
“State elected officials like the governor need to be reminded they represent the entire state and not just Chicago,” Skillicorn added. “The welfare of all the people of the state needs to come before just one town and any special-interest group.”
Skillicorn admits it is harder for Republicans to be heard in Springfield these days, given the new makeup of the legislature and Democrats' overwhelming majority. No matter what, he vows to fight on.
“I will continue to oppose any Chicago bailouts and use my voice to expose all frauds and wrong doings,” he said. “My commitment is to do all I can to make sure that the people and taxpayers of East Dundee and the state as a whole are treated fairly and with the respect they deserve.”