Rock Island Taxpayers: Enough Already!

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Rock Island, IL – Taxpayers in Rock Island County have had enough of greedy politicians’ lust for other people’s money.

“After the county board approved an 8.9% property tax increase for 2020, taxpayers resoundingly rejected an additional 1% sales tax increase. They let the money-grubbing bureaucrats know they’ve had enough,” said Jim Tobin, president of Taxpayers United of America (TUA).

“It’s no secret that all of the increase in taxes is used to prop up a failed government pension system. And as local governments raise property taxes to fund the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF), Democrat Governor Jay Robert “J. B.” Pritzker seeks to raise the state’s income tax to fund the other five failed pension funds.”

“Pritzker’s income-tax theft amendment will be on the November 3, 2020 ballot. If passed, this taxpayer robbery will hit the middle-class the hardest. And after the huge loss of jobs and income from the Covid-19 pandemic, Illinois’ middle-class will virtually disappear.”

“If ever there was a time to tell Pritzker and the rest of the blood-sucking politicians that we’ve had enough, it’s now!”

“As many of you have been struggling without a paycheck, or watching your business disintegrate, here’s what a few of the political elite in Rock Island County collected without a concern about you:

Marshall E. Douglas retired from Rock Island County government and his annual pension is a comfortable $158,956. His estimated lifetime payout is $2,866,238, but his own investment in that lucrative payout was only about 5.6%

Calvin D. Lee retired from Moline USD 40 and collects $229,335 in annual pension payments. His estimated lifetime payout is a stunning $7,328,284! He was able to retire at the age of 58 and only contributed about 5% of his own money into the Teachers Retirement System (TRS).

Bettie Truitt, Blackhawk College retiree, collects $137,575 a year from the State University Retirement System (SURS). Having retired at the age of 52, she will realize about $7,117,914 in lifetime pension payments.”

Click here to view top Rock Island IMRF pensions

Click here to view top Rock Island TRS pensions

Click here to view top Rock Island SURS pensions

“These government employees only work 20.1 years on average in order to collect these sky-high pensions. And for every dollar they deposit in their own pension fund, taxpayers are forced to fork over $4.74. Add to that a 3% cost of living adjustment and it doesn’t take a genius to understand why Illinois’ government pensions are insolvent.”

“Rather than put an income-tax theft amendment on the ballot, Pritzker should have pushed for a pension reform amendment because these outrageous pensions are protected by the state constitution. Enough is enough,” said Tobin.


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A recent article in the Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills Patch revealed that retired Hinsdale SD 181 elementary Supt. Mary Curley receives an annual pension of an astounding $315,336, and that this enormous pension was made possible by two 20 percent raises in her final two years.


“Curley retired at 55 after 34 years with the district,” said Jim Tobin, president of Taxpayers United of America (TUA). “For years, many districts granted superintendents and teachers two 20 percent raises in their last two years. Finally, the state legislature passed a law limiting end-of-career spiking to 6 percent annually in the last four years, which is still a huge amount.”

“This egregious example is just the tip of the iceberg. Retired government school bureaucrats and teachers in Illinois are receiving lavish, gold-plated pensions and benefits that enable them to enjoy luxurious lifestyles while the state’s government pension funds have become functionally bankrupt.”

“To make matters worse, Illinois taxpayers have had their state income taxes raised by a substantial amount so that their hard-earned dollars can be pumped into the floundering government pension funds.”

“While the average Social Security pension for taxpayers is $17,532, our Taxpayer Education Foundation’s (TUA) research shows that 111,809 Illinois Government Pensioners collect more than $50,000 in taxpayer funded payments, and over 22,000 of those pensioners collect more than $100,000 in taxpayer funded payments. This is outrageous.”

“Retired government employees who receive IMRF pensions, one of the state’s six government pension plans, are subsidized with our property taxes. They also are eligible for Social Security payments!”

“It doesn’t take a genius to figure out why the state’s government pension plans are effectively bankrupt, and why the state itself is going under as it tries to save these funds with more taxpayer dollars. Springfield politicians must now bite the bullet and consider an amendment to the Illinois Constitution to enable pension benefits to be lowered.”

“In the meantime, taxpayers must defeat all property tax increase referenda on the March 17 primary ballot.”

“Finally, it’s crucial that taxpayers vote against the Income Theft Amendment that Gov. Jay Robert ‘J. B.’ Pritzker put on the November 3 ballot.  

Click here to view the 2019 overview of the six major Illinois pension funds.


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The Taxpayer Education Foundation (TEF) today released its study of the McHenry County area government-employee pensions, highlighting the top pensions in the Teachers Retirement System (TRS), the State Universities Retirement System (SURS) and the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF). Taxpayers United of America (TUA) issued the following statement based on the TEF pension study.

“It is no mystery what’s driving the economy-killing property tax increases in McHenry County,” said Jim Tobin, TUA president. “It’s the state’s lavish, gold-plated pension plans for retired government employees.”

“The perpetual tax increases that plague Illinois residents have nothing to do with children, roads, or services. They are about pensions for the privileged government class. This money may be ‘earmarked’ for buildings or whatever, but in reality it only frees up increased taxes for government pensions. It’s a shell game.”

“Those of us in the private sector must reduce our spending if our income decreases; we can’t just go to our employer and demand more money to fund irresponsible spending. That’s not true for the political class.”

“The IMRF pension fund, which gives lavish, gold-plated pension benefits to retired municipal employees, is subsidized by property taxes. If that isn’t bad enough, IMRF pensioners are also eligible to receive Social Security pensions.”

“The entire local and statewide pension system in Illinois is unsustainable. The other five statewide pension funds are partly funded by the state income tax. Democrat Governor Jay Robert ‘J. B.’ Pritzker and his tax-raising cronies want to stick it to middle class taxpayers by increasing the state income tax again. They placed, on the November 2020 ballot, another statewide income tax increase. What does a statewide income tax increase mean for you? It means stealing from you to subsidize government pension millionaires.”

“The federal graduated income tax was sold to taxpayers as ‘a tax cut for the middle class.’ How did that turn out?”

“The state government employee pension system is the single cause of Illinois’ critical financial situation and it is mathematically impossible to tax our way out of this situation.”

“When you look at what the individual government retirees are actually collecting in taxpayer-funded pensions, you can get a better idea of why this theft of taxpayer wealth is so outrageous. Keep in mind that the average taxpayer will collect only about $17,500 a year from Social Security.”

“Here are some egregious examples.”

“Kirk Reimer retired from Crystal Lake Park District at the age of 55. His current IMRF annual pension is $104,096. His estimated lifetime pension is $987,511 over a normal lifetime. He also is eligible for a Social Security pension.”

“Ronald Miller retired from Crystal Lake CCSD 47 at the age of 55. His current annual pension is $185,140. For a total contribution he made to his pension of only $284,287, he will accumulate $6,435,383 in taxpayer funded pension payments over a normal lifetime.”

“Teresa Lane retired from McHenry CHSD 156 at the age of 55. Her current annual pension is $158,038. For a total contribution she made to her pension of only $183,460, she will accumulate $5,777,191 in taxpayer funded pension payments over a normal lifetime.”

“Christine Harris retired from Crystal Lake CCSD 47 at the age of 54. Her current annual pension is $150,228. For a total contribution she made to her pension of only $210,249, she will accumulate $5,657,601 in taxpayer funded pension payments over a normal lifetime.”

“Douglas Evans retired from Seneca TWP HSD 160 at the age of 55. His current annual pension is $147,007. For a total contribution he made to his pension of only $209,384, he will accumulate $5,420,343 in taxpayer funded pension payments over a normal lifetime.”

Click Here to view top McHenry County government pensions.

“The Illinois government in Springfield has failed us. It’s in everyone’s best interest to solve the pension problem before the system completely collapses. It is no longer a matter of ‘if’ it will collapse, but when.”

“All new hires should be placed into 401(k) style retirement savings accounts. Member contributions to their retirement funds should be increased. Retirement age for full benefits should be increased to at least 65, preferably to 67, and contributions for health care also should be increased. Anything short of these reforms will do nothing to permanently solve the problem.”