Illinois legislative session ends without teacher pension reform
June 1, 2012 (CHICAGO) (WLS) -- Despite the failure of the legislature to pass pension reform legislation, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn says he will work with lawmakers to end the stalemate.
Friday, the governor downplayed the partisan rancor that marked this roller coaster week in the General Assembly.
"We must forge an agreement," Quinn said. "I think we have the elements. We're very close, but we're not there yet."
The governor earlier this week tried to forge a pension reform compromise when he sided with Republicans on a key sticking point, asking House Speaker Michael Madigan to back down on a provision that would have required suburban and downstate school districts to pay for their teachers' pensions.
The issue proved a deal-breaker for many Chicago house members, who say it is time for communities outside Chicago to stop relying on state taxpayers.
"When you've never had to pay your share of the taxes at all, having to pay any part of it is going to be a tough pill to swallow, I think," said State Rep. Greg Harris, (D) Chicago.
Friday, the governor said both sides are not as far apart as they seem.
"Those units of government cannot be free riders," said Quinn. "Everyone I've read about has agreed with the core principal. It's how to implement that principal that we're still having the negotiations on."
On another matter, the governor declined to say whether he would veto a bill expanding casino gambling, which he has opposed in the past, instead repeating his usual mantra: "Integrity, integrity, integrity."
The bill's senate sponsor said the measure contains provisions guarding against fraud and expressed confidence he could scrounge up enough votes for a veto override.
"Instead of having to play this game, we're not trying to embarrass the governor. I'm trying to work with the governor," said State Sen. Terry Link, (D) Waukegan.
The governor says next week he will bring together house and senate leaders from both parties to figure out how to move forward in a special session this summer.
A supermajority of votes is needed to pass anything in a special session ... so they have a long way to go.
illinois news, eric horng
- Students, teachers tearful as CPS closures begin
- Body ID'd as missing UofC student, 20
- LeBron headband absence could be key for Miami Heat win
- ABC7 Weather Forecast
- Milwaukee District West Metra trains moving, but delayed 37 min ago
- 'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini dead at 51 in Italy 45 min ago
- More than 8 percent of Illinois bridges structurally deficient 39 min ago
- State lawmakers send pension crisis to committee
- Long lines for Cook County flood assistance
- Blackhawks fans show support with lawns, office decor
- Man convicted with twin faces new sex trafficking charges
- Museum of Science and Industry marks 80th birthday
- Child luring alert issued in Albany Park
- abcnews: Ohio Town Police Chief a Facebook Hit
- More than 8 percent of Illinois bridges...
39 min ago