Illinois to potentially go off fiscal cliff of its own

By WEEK Producer

Illinois to potentially go off fiscal cliff of its own

January 1, 2013 Updated Jan 3, 2013 at 2:45 PM CDT

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- State Senator Bill Brady says despite what happens in Washington, the reality is that Illinois is already hanging over a Financial Cliff of its own.

According to Reuters, the state will have to come up with $1.1 billion dollars more in the 2014 fiscal year to fund state pensions. That's on top of the currently underfunded system of $96 billion.

Legislators are scheduled to return to Springfield in the coming days to tackle the issue during the Lame Duck Session, which has been shortened by leaders of both the House and Senate.

"There seems to be great dysfunction," said State Senator Bill Brady, R-44th District. "Senate meeting certain days. House meeting different days. We got serious problems we are facing: Pension reform, the financial crisis that we face under this Governor that need to be addressed immediately."

"I think there is still too many individuals who are too far apart on pension reform to be able to have it done in that Lame Duck Session, but we will just have to wait and see," said State Representative Dan Brady, R-88th District.

Governor Pat Quinn says the state's pension liability is growing by an estimated $17 million a day, but he believes that despite the Lame Duck cancellations, legislators will have ample time to get a pension reform done before the new legislation is sworn in January 9.

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