SPRINGFIELD (Sept. 15, 2017) – Gov. Bruce Rauner took action today on the following bills:

Bill No.: HB 0173

An Act Concerning Public Aid

Action: Signed

Effective: June 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 0311

An Act Concerning Regulation

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediately

Bill No.: HB 0688

An Act Concerning Public Employee Benefits

Action: Vetoed

Note: Veto Message Below 

Bill No.: HB 0760

An Act Concerning Education

Action: Signed

Effective: June 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 2810

An Act Concerning Animals

Action: Signed

Effective: June 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 2993

An Act Concerning Education

Action: Signed

Effective: June 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 3060

An Act Concerning Health

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 3791

An Act Concerning Business

Action: Signed

Effective: June 1, 2018

Bill No.: HB 4011

An Act Concerning Government

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediately

Bill No.: SB 0776

An Act Concerning Civil Law

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediately

Bill No.: SB 1775

An Act Concerning Local Government

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediately

Veto Message for HB 0688

September 15, 2017 

To the Honorable Members of

The Illinois House of Representatives,

100th General Assembly:

Today, I veto House Bill 688 from the 100th General Assembly, which creates a mechanism for members of police and firefighter pension funds to transfer service credits between funds.   

Many of Illinois’ downstate fire and police funds are dangerously underfunded, and some are approaching insolvency. A rising number of retirees, combined with low funding ratios, continues to put pressure on the financial health of local governments.  In its current form, this bill will introduce further financial risks.  This legislation allows service credits to migrate among the respective funds, which may introduce uncertainty with respect to cashflow management.  This bill may also worsen existing unfunded liabilities without comprehensive and foolproof safeguards to assure an appropriate calculation of the true cost for transferring credits. In short, this bill introduces more financial uncertainty to the long-term financial health of these funds and is inappropriate to enact into law.    

Illinois is in the midst of a pension crisis that impacts the state as a whole as well as individual local governments. Dramatically underfunded pensions risk the long-term solvency of local governments and put state finances under severe stress, and the underfunding of downstate police and fire pension funds warrants further investigation. In the meantime, the General Assembly should enact pension reforms that mitigate uncertainty and reduce unfunded liabilities. Unfortunately, House Bill 688 increases uncertainty and could contribute to larger unfunded liabilities in local pension funds.

Therefore, pursuant to Section 9(b) of Article IV of the Illinois Constitution of 1970, I hereby return House Bill 688, entitled “AN ACT concerning employee benefits”, with the foregoing objections, vetoed in its entirety.

Sincerely,

Bruce Rauner

GOVERNOR