State Legislators prepare for second week of fall veto session

By Denise Jackson

November 4, 2013 Updated Nov 4, 2013 at 8:53 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- State legislators say they have heard there could be some progress on reforming the pension program.

Five months ago, the pension conference committee began the task of trying to find a way to pay for the state's $100 billion underfunded retirement program.

State Senator Dave Koehler said two weeks ago state leaders began meeting after the committee hit an impasse. Legislative leaders are trying to close a gap between committee members who are split over a savings plan.

"I'm gonna reserve my judgment until I see the final product cause I do have some concerns about the fairness of this and the constitutionality," Koehler said.

Koehler said he does not think legislative leaders or the committee will have a pension reform bill to discuss this second week of veto session.

State Representative Jehan Gordon-Booth sounded a little more optimistic.

"Elaine Nekritz who has been a leader on pension reform for the last couple of years, when I talked to her last week she said we're at the one yard line," Gordon-Booth said.

"The bottom line is what is going to be brought to the floor and at the end of the day what the speaker is going to be allowed to be voted on," said state Representative Mike Unes.

Same Sex marriage, tax incentives for businesses and tougher gun penalties are some other issues state legislators could consider this week.

If there is no movement on pension reform Governor Quinn could call a special session before the end of the year.

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