Chicago aldermen stand to get millions in pensions

May 1, 2012

Associated Press

An analysis of pension fund documents by the Chicago Tribune shows retiring City Council members stand to get millions in benefits thanks to a quiet deal engineered under former Mayor Richard M. Daley.

The newspaper reported Tuesday that documents show 21 aldermen who have retired under the plan are in line to get nearly $58 million over their expected lifetimes. But contributions and the likely investment returns are forecast to cover just $19 million — or about a third — of the sum.

The gap is contributing to the municipal pension plan's $6.7 billion in unfunded liabilities. That's adding to the strain for taxpayers and current and future city employees.

Legislation creating the plan was tucked into a larger bill signed into state law in 1991 without public vetting.