80% of state teacher pension payments going towards unfunded liability

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Post By: Fox News
SEE VIDEO: http://foxillinois.com/news/local/80-of-state-teacher-pension-payments-g...

Seven billion dollars of the state's budget goes towards pensions for the fiscal year 2017; Four million of that is for the Teachers Retirement System (TRS). However, 80 percent of that funding goes towards unfunded liabilities, while only 20 percent actually goes towards pension payments accumulated throughout the year.

That unfunded liability comes from the state not paying the full tab, which has been done for years. For the fiscal year 2017, the state should pay $6 billion, rather than only $4 billion, if they want to stop accruing that unfunded liability.

Since the inception of state pensions for teachers in 1939, according to TRS, the state has never fully funded the pension system.

These pension payments are a legal duty of the state of Illinois laid out in the state constitution. Retired teachers won't lose pensions, but the systems may not be as beneficial for current and future teachers.

Also, it will be the taxpayers picking up the tab on the unfunded liability, according to TRS. They say that's the state's obligation.

We reached out to Governor Bruce Rauner's office for comment, but they have not responded yet.