Pension session resumes in Springfield Wednesday

By WEEK Reporter

June 16, 2013 Updated Jun 17, 2013 at 11:43 AM CDT

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- The pressure is on for Illinois lawmakers. Wednesday, they return to Springfield for a special session to solve the state's 100 billion dollar pension problem.

Governor Pat Quinn is demanding a bill be on his desk to sign into law.

The legislation, Senate Bill One, was originally approved in the House, but failed in the Senate.

A new vote on the measure would need 36 votes to pass and Governor Quinn said he's been working the phones to get a majority.

He said he expects the state leadership team to do the same.

At a press conference, Quinn was asked if he thought Senate President John Cullerton and House Speaker Mike Madigan don't want the pension stalemate to end in order to make him look bad.

"Well I hope that isn't the case," said Quinn, "because an oath of office means something to me and I hope it means something to them. But I'm governor today and I'm going to be governor tomorrow. And I'm going to be governor because I'm here to do this job for the people. The job is to pass public comprehensive pension reform into law. I have to sign that bill into law so I'm ready to do my job and I think the legislators and their leaders need to do their job."

If the vote fails on Wednesday, Governor Quinn wants to form a bi-partisan conference committee with five lawmakers from each chamber to resolve the differing pension proposals.

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