Bloomington proves why Fair Tax is the wrong amendment

By:  Diane Benjamin

On the November ballot will be an amendment to the Illinois Constitution to change income tax from a flat rate to a progressive tax.  The State will quickly run out of high income people to tax – the middle class makes up the majority of taxpayers so that tax will hit them quickly.

The REAL problem in the State of Illinois is pensions.   The Bloomington Finance Director proved that point last night, of course nobody on the Council mentioned it.

This statement is in the packet:

imrf rate increase

All city employees other than Police and Fire are in the IMRF retirement fund.  They will all get pensions that within 10 years will pay them about as much as they got working because pensions checks go up 3% every year whether inflation does or not.

Employees pay a flat percent of their salary into the plan, everything else if paid by taxpayers.  I haven’t heard why IMRF is requiring higher employer contributions when the economy is booming, but taxpayers get to fund the decrease they are expecting in investment returns.  The employees get a pass.

How much more is the City required to contribute to IMRF next year?  Listen at 22:20:

Almost $800,000

That is $800,000 that can’t be used for essential services.  The employees will see no difference in their contributions.  Defined benefit programs put taxpayers on the hook for all future payments.  Don’t forget the MILLIONS you forked over because employees were allowed to spike their pensions too.

The Constitutional Amendment that should be on ballot is fixing pensions.  Taxpayers mostly don’t have defined benefit retirement plans.  If the market goes down their plans go down, IMRF participants don’t have that problem.  It isn’t fair.  The Fair Tax just means this injustice continues.  Thank the Democrats and vote NO in November.

FYI:  The City is finally not sending as much (if any) of your money to Springfield for legal.  Jeff Jurgens is a City employee now.  I hope he moved here, otherwise it will be spent in Chatham/Springfield.

One thought on “Bloomington proves why Fair Tax is the wrong amendment

  1. Diane,One reason IMRF employer contributions have risen is because the number of working employees in the system has gone down each year for several years, thus reducing the amount working employees contribute.  I started work (1970) when almost everyone had a defined benefit package through both public and private employers.  Of course this has changed over the years as the economy has changed.  Something probably does need to change for new employees but I’m not going to feel guilty for drawing my pension that I worked over 30 years for.The difference in most pensions compared to IMRF is IMRF annual raises are always based on the BASE salary at retirement.  They are not compounded like most other pension plans.  If your annual IMRF 3% raise is $800, that figure is the raise for the rest of your retirement.  It never changes.  Most other systems compound the raise so it is always more each year. In all my years working under this system I never knew anyone that had their pension “spiked”.  That usually happens with the big wigs that are in their ivory towers and control the purse strings.  I’m not saying it didn’t happen.  I just never knew anyone that got spiked.My experience was with County employment so I don’t know what other municipalities have done.Keep doing what you’re doing Diane.  It is appreciated by many.

    Liked by 2 people

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