Within two hours of a state lawmaker proposing paying for pensions by extending the 2011 income tax increase, the governor said he opposed the idea. “I really don’t feel that solving the pension problem is a revenue issue. I think we have to deal with it on a comprehensive basis,” Gov. Pat Quinn said.
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The tax increase, from 3 percent to 5 percent, went into effect in 2011. Part of the tax increase expires at the end of 2014, so notwithstanding future legislation, it will go down to 3.75 percent at the start of 2015. Quinn prefers S.B. 1 as a solution to pensions. The bill requires that the pension system be 100 percent funded by 2043. “I think S.B. 1 understands that there are different concepts but you can put them in one bill, that can get the job done,” Quinn said.