Casinos, pensions top veto session agenda

Lawmakers head back to Springfield for unfinished business

October 24, 2011

Kristen McQueary

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From pension reform to pregnant prisoners, lawmakers returning to Springfield face a packed agenda.

The first day of the veto session is Tuesday. Members of the General Assembly say they expect to vote on a gambling expansion bill, again, after Gov. Pat Quinn rejected several pillars of the plan they sent him in May.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel hopes lawmakers and the governor can find common ground. Otherwise, a casino for Chicago, which the mayor wants to help ease budget constraints, could be placed on the back burner after finally getting through both chambers for the first time in more than a decade.

Also set for a committee hearing is a bill to prohibit the Department of Corrections from shackling prisoners while they are giving birth. The bill arose after national news stories highlighted that restraints were being used on women during labor. 

County regional school superintendents also hope to get paid. Quinn eliminated their salaries from the budget in May, but support has emerged for a plan to pay them out of local tax dollars.

And pension reform is expected to be addressed, too. Several bills expected to move through committees that would eliminate a loophole in pensions for leaders of organized labor, along with revamping the pension boards that oversee systems for city of Chicago and Cook County employees.