I am writing you to ask you to please support Senate Bill 2404, which is being considered by the Illinois State Legislature. Please do not support Speaker of House Michael Madigan’s pension bill. Speaker Madigan’s bill will hurt my family.
I am a retired teacher. I will not get Social Security benefits because of my years paying into the Teachers Retirement System rather than paying into Social Security.
Therefore, freezing my cost of living adjustments is freezing my income. If Speaker Madigan’s bill passes and is signed by the governor, I will be forced to find full-time work in order to maintain our home and family.
The Illinois Constitution guarantees pension benefits for retired teachers, stating that these benefits “cannot be diminished.” By voting for Speaker Madigan’s bill, you are violating your oath of office to uphold the Illinois State Constitution.
Think of the widowed retired teachers in downstate Illinois who are living on a pension of less than $25,000 per year. These retired teachers are close to the poverty level, and since CIGNA, the state insurance is not paying its vendors on time because the state is broke, these widows are even more strapped for money.
Every time the Chicago Tribune runs a pension story, a rich, retired administrator from the Chicago suburbs is singled out. The fact is that in places like Serena, Knoxville, and Morrisonville, retired teachers are living from hand-to-mouth. You must consider the plight of these female, retired teachers and not listen to the Tribune, which is a shill for the Civic Federation. The Civic Federation is not concerned with “fixing” the pension problem; its members are rich billionaires who only want to continue the corporate tax breaks that the State of Illinois is giving their companies.
A widowed teacher in Alexis, Illinois living on a pension of $19,000 per year will be hurt considerably by Speaker Madigan’s bill should it become law. I hope that you will vote yes when SB 2404 reaches your chamber.
Thanks for considering my request.