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Chicago – North side residents drown from higher property taxes as The Illinois Pension Crisis worsens.
Already burdened by some of the highest property taxes in the country, Chicago communities such as Lakeview are seeing their property taxes soar after recent property tax assessments. The average increase in Lakeview alone is 32 percent, and increases as high as 50 percent have been reported. Combined with other tax increases, including another property tax increase pushed by the Mayor of Chicago, the situation is going from bad to worse.
As reported on by the Chicago Tribune, the greedy City of Chicago will be hiking taxes on property, water and sewer. There will also be increased fares for the CTA and increased monthly fees for 911. The Chicago Turbine has finally identified the cause of these tax increases, Illinois pensions.
“The vast bulk of the money raised will be spent on fixing underfunded government worker pension systems that were at risk of going broke. It’s a point Mayor Rahm Emanuel often raises, also noting that he’s trying to end the practice of papering over Chicago’s longstanding financial woes accrued under former Mayor Richard M. Daley. That, however, may be cold comfort to taxpayers now shouldering the burden.”
The state of Illinois pension system has been a burden on taxpayers for years. A recent example of the Illinois Pension Crisis was Harvey Illinois. It was reported that due to pensions, Harvey Illinois was forced to lay off a quarter of the police force and almost half of their fire fighters to pay lavish pensions.
Below are just some of the pensions the citizens of Chicago are forced to pay.
Chicago Municipal Retirees
Top 5 Pensions as of 2017
Current Annual Pension
Age at Retirement
*Estimated lifetime payout
Click here for the Chicago municipal retirees top 200 Pensions
“All of the top 200 Chicago pensions for the ‘poor civil servants’ are at least $100,000 a year,” stated TUA’s president, Jim Tobin. “The average retirement age for this group of pensioners is only 58. Social Security requires taxpayers to reach age 67 before they are eligible for full retirement benefits…which max out at about $32,000 a year”
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CHICAGO—The president of Taxpayers United of America (TUA) today condemned the recommendation released May 13 under the letterhead of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago to introduce a statewide 1% property tax to bail out the floundering government-employee pension plans in the state.
“This recommendation is not only astounding, it’s irresponsible,” said Jim Tobin, TUA president, economist and former Federal Reserve auditor.
“Illinois taxpayers already are heavily subsidizing the lavish, gold-plated pension plans of retired government employees. The $5 billion generated by the latest state income tax increase is being poured into the black hole of the state pension funds, and still the funds are essentially insolvent.”
“It’s impossible for the state to tax its way out of this mess, but tax thieves still propose new and higher taxes for Illinois taxpayers. More taxpayers have fled Illinois than any other state, but this doesn’t seem to register with tax-and-spend politicians.”
“The reasons given for this recommendation are pathetic. Because homeowners purportedly have benefited most from government ‘services,’ say the three authors of this proposal, they should pay a larger share of the costs of bailing out the state pension plans. In other words, they say the most successful people in the private sector should pay more to support these extravagant pension plans.”
“Illinois is bankrupt in fact, if not in name, and the only way to keep the state from going under is to place a state constitutional amendment on the statewide ballot to allow reductions in these pension benefits. All new government hires should be put into their own 401(k) accounts, and current retirees must greatly increase their contributions to their pension plans.”
“A statewide 1% property tax would devastate the already-feeble Illinois economy, and accelerate the departure of the middle class from Illinois.”
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Chicago – Taxpayer Education Foundation (TEF) today released its annual report of the State Employees’ Retirement System (SERS). Each year TEF obtains updated information on SERS retiree pension payments through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests directly from the SERS administrators. That data combined with information from the SERS annual report and the Illinois statutes governing the pension system provide the information necessary to calculate estimated lifetime pension payouts for current pensioners. Expected lifetimes are based on IRS form 590 actuarial tables. All statements and analyses are based on these data.
“SERS is another example of the state’s inability to live up to the pension promises made to the current 72,005 SERS payees in the third largest statewide fund,” said Jim Tobin, TEF president.”
“Like all of the government-employee pension funds in the state, SERS is bound by law to keep unrealistic promises made to government employees, but it is taxpayers who are forced to fund them. For every $1.00 that SERS members deposited into their own pension funds last year, taxpayers were forced to deposit $7.15.”
By contrast, private sector employees are required by law to deposit a combined 15% of their earnings and employer profits into Social Security for an average annual Social Security pension of about $17,000 if they work at least 32 years and retire at 66 while the SERS counterparts average $34,381 annually for only 24 years of eligible employment and the average age of retirement is 59. SERS pensioners are guaranteed an annual 3% compounded cost of living adjustment (COLA) regardless of market conditions. Social Security COLA is always limited to the consumer price index. The 2018 SS COLA is 2%.
“Illinois is functionally bankrupt. Yes, ‘bankrupt’ is the generally accepted term for the financial state of not having the capacity to meet one’s financial obligations. Across the state, services are being cut because Illinois statute requires pensions to be paid before other obligations and we can’t afford both. Illinois is bankrupt and bloated government pensions are the cause.”
“Here are just the top 5 pensions from SERS.
Current Annual Pension
Age at Retirement
*Estimated Lifetime Pension Payout
Employee Contribution % of Lifetime Payout
PARWATIKAR, SADASHIV D
BAIG, MIRZA S
Click here to see the top 200 SERS pensions
“It is mathematically impossible for Illinois to tax its way out of the pension promises corrupt politicians traded for votes, but that won’t stop the greedy Springfield thieves from trying. Moves are already under way to get a graduated income tax on the ballot, and basic services will be held hostage to ensure they get the votes needed to pass it.”
“Illinois has the highest out-migration in the country right now and we are on pace to lose another congressional district when the 2020 census is concluded. We are bleeding productive taxpayers, which only worsens our problems because there are fewer of us to carry the burden of higher taxes and higher interest on borrowing.”
Taxpayers United Of America: (TUA). is a nonpartisan, 501(c)(4) taxpayer advocacy group. Founded June 27, 1976 in Chicago, Illinois by activist and economist Jim Tobin, TUA works on behalf of taxpayers to reduce local, state, and federal taxes. In the past forty years, TUA has saved taxpayers more than $200 billion n taxes and has become one of the largest taxpayer organizations in America. Check All posts.
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