SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – To take the financial burden off of municipalities and create a stable path to fulfilling pension payments, state Rep. Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, supported legislation to consolidate downstate police and fire pension systems.
“This legislation will help shift the financial burden off of municipalities, while strengthening the pension fund and maximizing investments,” said Stuart. “Our first responders deserve the peace of mind that they will receive their pensions without causing financial hardships for our local municipalities and townships.”
Stuart supported Senate Bill 1300, which will consolidate over 600 different downstate fire and police pension systems into two funds for both firefighters and police officers. The larger funds will yield higher returns on investments for public safety officials. The measure garnered bipartisan support as a solution to stabilize pension payments and relieve local administrative costs and tax burdens, like property taxes. Stuart voted in favor of the measure as part of her agenda to build a stronger Illinois and reduce property taxes for local municipalities.
“Consolidating the assets of the more than 650 downstate public safety pension funds throughout Illinois will help provide stronger investment returns for active and retired public safety employees and reduce redundant administrative costs on Illinois’ taxpayers,” said Illinois Municipal League Executive Director Brad Cole. “This is a good first step forward on the complicated and comprehensive issue of pension reform.”