On November 6 a proposed Amendment to Article XIII of the Illinois Constitution will appear on the ballot. This Amendment would add a section to the Constitution requiring a three-fifth majority of the voting body to approve any pension or retirement benefit increase for public employees.
The Amendment would adversely affect teachers, police officers, fire fighters, prison guards and anyone else employed by any branch of government in Illinois. It would require a super-majority to ever again increase pensions, compensated time off, other incentives and possibly salary for these workers. Workers who, for the most part, do not receive Social Security benefits.
It is unfair for the General Assembly to further punish the hardworking state and municipal employees for the wrongdoings of elected officials. The General Assembly did not protect the monies these workers paid into the pension system from every single one of their paychecks never missing a payment.
This Amendment will limit the collective bargaining power of employees, will cause increased litigation over what constitutes a benefit and will make it harder to attract the best people to work in government service.