Rock Island Gov. Pensions Drive Higher Property Taxes

Rock Island

This story was featured by the Dispatch–Argus, KWQC TV, and WQAD TV. Another story on this release was run 9/19/2019 by WQAD TV.

Rock Island, IL – Taxpayer Education Foundation (TEF) today released its updated study on Rock Island County, Rock Island City, Moline, and East Moline government pensions including the top 200 pensions in the Teachers Retirement System (TRS), Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF), and the State University Retirement System (SURS). Taxpayers United of America (TUA) issued the following statement based on the TEF pension study:

“Taxpayers in Rock Island County have been hit with yet another property tax increase. This time additional revenue of 11.9% is needed to keep the IMRF pensions afloat,” said Jim Tobin, president of TUA.

“The IMRF pension fund, which gives lavish, gold-plated pension benefits to retired municipal employees, is funded by property taxes. $903 million in property taxes have been shoveled into this fund to keep it afloat.”

Rock Island County has an effective property tax rate of 2.56%, according to Attom Data Solutions. The national average is 1.17% and the Illinois average is 2.22%.

“Taxpayers in Rock Island County sure aren’t getting their money’s worth. Their effective property tax rate is more than double the national average and even higher than the Illinois state average. The reason it is so high is because goonish politicians spend lavishly on gold plated, retired government employee pensions. Rock Island County taxpayers are paying for government services provided years ago. Sadly, there isn’t enough money left to pay for the services taxpayers need today.”

“The entire local and statewide pension system in Illinois is unsustainable. The other five statewide pension funds are funded by the state income tax. Democrat Governor Jay Robert ‘J. B.’ Pritzker and his tax-raising cronies want to stick it to middle class taxpayers by increasing the income tax under the guise of a ‘more fair’ graduated income tax, so they can make it through the next election cycle. When the state goes under, they will be enjoying their retirements in Arizona or Florida.”

“Middle-class Rock Island taxpayers would be decimated by the Pritzker income-tax hike if it passes. There is nothing fair about his ‘fair tax’ that will, by design, siphon even more wealth out of the pockets of the middle-class. And his tax increases won’t stop there as we’ve seen with Pritzker’s gargantuan gasoline tax-hike.”

“When you look at what individual government retirees are actually collecting in taxpayer funded pensions, you can get a better idea of why this theft of taxpayer wealth is so egregious. Keep in mind that the average taxpayer will collect about $17,500 a year from Social Security and that most IMRF pensioners are also eligible for a Social Security pension.”

Calvin Lee retired from Moline USD40 and currently collects $222,655 a year in taxpayer-funded pension payments. He contributed $390,120 into the TRS to fund his own pension which will total about $7.3 million over a normal lifetime.

Marshall Douglas receives benefits from the IMRF. His current annual pension is $155,673 and will accumulate to $2.5 million over a normal lifetime. He deposited $159,794 into his own pension. Marshall is also eligible for a social security pension.

Black Hawk College retiree, Bettie Truitt, retired at the age of 52 and currently collects $133,568 in pension payments. Taxpayers largely fund her estimated lifetime payout of $7,161,282 as she contributed only $187,423.

“All Illinois government new hires should be placed in a 401(k) style retirement savings account, beginning immediately, and the retirement age should be increased to 65. These measures would at least slow the bleeding until comprehensive pension reform can be enacted.”

Click here to see the top 200 Rock Island, Moline and East Moline TRS pensions
Click here to see the top 200 Rock Island, Moline and East Moline municipal,  and Rock Island County IMRF pensions
Click here to see the top Black Hawk SURS pensions

Taxpayers at LiberTEA Fest 2019

Taxpayers were in Galesburg Saturday, September 7, 2019 for the wonderful IL LiberTEA Fest 2019. Jim Tobin, President of TUA gave a speech exposing the Illinois government pension scam. Local taxpayers were amazed at just how much former government employees were receiving. For example: Ronald L. Cope, who retired at the age of 56 receives an annual taxpayer funded pension of $142,268 a year! Ronald, and many other goons were listed on a flyer handed out to the crowd. These flyers were so popular they ran out.

Jim Tobin will be visiting another city to release even more government pension data soon. Will it be your city? Stay tuned!

Click HERE to view top Galesburg Govt. Pensions as a PDF.


View as PDF

CHICAGO—The head of Taxpayers United of America (TUA) today voiced his group’s opposition to long-standing requests of Illinois cities and towns to consolidate more than 650 police and fire pension funds, saying that the funds are in such bad financial condition that property tax increases, without property tax increase referendums, would result, and that the funds still would be essentially insolvent. Jim Tobin, TUA president, also voiced opposition specifically to House Bill 1567, sponsored by St. Rep. Ryan Spain (R-73, Peoria), which would amend the Illinois Pension Code to merge all Article 3 police officers’ pension funds and Article 4 firefighters’ pension funds into the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF) on January 1, 2021.

“Illinois’ five statewide government-employee pension funds have a staggering $134 billion in unfunded liabilities,” said Tobin. “Chicago’s four pension funds are struggling with $28 billion in unfunded liabilities.”

“Merging government pension funds would solve nothing, and the better-funded pension funds would see their assets diluted.”

“Illinois Governor Jay Robert ‘J. B.’ Pritzker (D) has appointed a task force to recommend changed to the statewide pension funds, but we know what’s coming. Cook County machine boss Pritzker orchestrated placing the Income Tax Increase Amendment on the 2020 statewide ballot, which would strangle Illinois’ economy with a graduated state income tax.”

“Almost all the money from the last huge income tax increase was plowed into the state’s floundering pension plans for retired government employees, and it didn’t even move the needle. If boss Pritzker succeeds in fooling voters into approving his income tax increase amendment, even that crushing tax hike would not solve the state pension crisis.”

“To be clear: It is impossible for the state to tax its way out of the state’s pension fund crisis. The pension funds are too far gone.”

“The only solution is to place all newly-hired government employees in 401(k) retirement plans, and, if necessary, place the worst of the present pension plans into bankruptcy.”