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Old 03-24-2016, 05:11 PM   #21
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Texas has outrageous property taxes, partially in lieu of state income taxes.

My best friend lives in Highland Park (N. Dallas), and when his property taxes hit $50K, he sold his house and rented a luxury apartment.
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Old 03-24-2016, 05:14 PM   #22
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Texas has outrageous property taxes, partially in lieu of state income taxes.

My best friend lives in Highland Park (N. Dallas), and when his property taxes hit $50K, he sold his house and rented a luxury apartment.
HP is about the most expensive neighborhood in Dallas.
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Old 03-24-2016, 05:15 PM   #23
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Most retired state workers do not end up with huge pensions-those are not that common. For instance in Nevada the average state worker gets a pension of 20k. Illinois government workers do pay into SS. I agree that the states need to pay what was promised. In my field I worked for less $ in return for that pension. I could have made more $ in private. Both my siblings are retired from IL and the same was true for their professions.
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Old 03-24-2016, 06:02 PM   #24
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The State of Illinois and Chicago took pension holidays for several years while the employees were paying their fair share all along. Agreed there is some fat cats and double dippers but that is in private industry as well. They just need to bite the bullet and pay up.
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Old 03-24-2016, 06:59 PM   #25
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To fix the unfunded liability shortage in the Illinois State Teachers Retirement System (TRS) Pension fund, every man, woman and child in the state would have to pay $5,000.00.

What to do when reality happens.
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:09 PM   #26
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Sounds like it's a good time to peak into the content of those muni funds.
Probably want to banish paper from PR, CA, IL, and Motown.
A smart guy once told me to go for those waste treatment bonds--they may be stinky but they are safe (er.)
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:09 PM   #27
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The shame is that the situation is effectively a transfer of wealth from the current/next generation to past generations (and past Illinoisans who have moved out) in that the past underpaid their fair share of the cost of these promises. Very unfair IMO, though on could assert that all states are that way to some degree as funding levels have dropped over time.

Lots of blame to be shared with stupid politicians who agreed to promises without appreciation the cost and unions who advocated for these benefits knowing that the employers couldn't afford them and allowing them to be underfunded.

IMO, if these promises had been required to be fully funded then the taxpayers would have put on the brakes long ago.
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:26 PM   #28
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IMO, if these promises had been required to be fully funded then the taxpayers would have put on the brakes long ago.
Politicians do not get union votes unless they deliver these. The same guy has been in charge of the state house for 40 years.....

Teachers deserve to be paid. Pensions are not taxed by the state but they do not get Social Security and they pay for the pension annually while teaching.

The median annual pension is $55,000 and the mode (most common payment total is 11,000 retirees) is $68,000 annually making them millionaires....God Bless....
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Old 03-24-2016, 07:33 PM   #29
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Very confusing article. Why would a state retirement system be on the hook for a private company not making contractual bond payments?

I wonder if the studio sold a bond to the retirement fund, defaulted on the payments and the fund had a loss and the author is twisting the loss into the retirement fund paying the studio's bills.
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Old 03-24-2016, 08:24 PM   #30
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Tonight's paper just came... Front page....
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Trib.jpg (227.7 KB, 30 views)
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Old 03-24-2016, 09:28 PM   #31
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MISH is Chicago based and as written extensively on IL pension issues. His conclusion is court's ruling will lead to bankruptcy of Chicago as only solution.

http://mishtalk.com/2016/03/24/illin...el/#more-36443


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Old 03-24-2016, 09:37 PM   #32
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Tonight's paper just came... Front page....
No surprise... the ship is sinking.
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:25 PM   #33
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The State of Illinois and Chicago took pension holidays for several years while the employees were paying their fair share all along. Agreed there is some fat cats and double dippers but that is in private industry as well. They just need to bite the bullet and pay up.
Do you have any links that prove this about the City of Chicago?, I believe the State of Illinois did take pension holidays but the City of Chicago has always in every year funded the legal minimum. The City of Chicago's problem was in the way they invested the funds and the drop in assumed return rates due to ZIRP, in the year 2000 the pension funds were 83% funded after the dotcom bust it dropped to 50sh rose to 67 percent in 2007 but then by 2009 dropped to just 36 percent funded. Presently they are at between 47 percent and 55 % depending on who you believe.
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Old 03-25-2016, 06:36 AM   #34
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I would think at some point, the Federal government would issue a bailout. The liability can then be on the Fed balance sheet, not the State of IL.

There is only so much money out there at the State level, but an unlimited amount st the Federal level.

Even so, when you look at how many companies that still do business in downtown Chicago, you can see they are willing to pay whatever it takes to be there.
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:08 AM   #35
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Most voters do pay taxes, do not like huge tax increases and do not have large pensions, so I can guess how the public pension issue will ultimately play out across the U.S. In California the voters did not like a Supreme Court Justice's stance on the death penalty and she was removed from office by the voters.
This is a problem. Just because a majority of people don't have something doesn't mean they should get to vote it away for those that do. Maybe alter it for the future (like my private mega crop did 18 years into my career), but not undo contracts that were already honored by one party.

My DW is a RI teacher and got screwed by our government, who added 7 years to her retirement age, reduced her benefits and increased her contributions. This sets a terrible precedent about being able to vote away contracted obligations just because the angry mob is jealous.
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:17 AM   #36
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Sounds like it's a good time to peak into the content of those muni funds.
Probably want to banish paper from PR, CA, IL, and Motown.
A smart guy once told me to go for those waste treatment bonds--they may be stinky but they are safe (er.)
Except in Alabama:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeffer...ap_controversy
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Two extremely controversial undertakings by county officials in the 2000s left the county in extreme debt, eventually leading to a 2011 bankruptcy. In the 1990s, the county authorized and financed a massive overhaul of the county-owned sewer system, beginning in 1996. Sewerage and water rates had increased more than 300% in the 15 years before 2011, causing severe problems for the poor in Birmingham and the county.
Actually, when you read the whole thing, it sounds like Jefferson County took a cue from Chicago politics.

I'm out of Illinois and not looking back. I loved my childhood there, but have no stomach to go back and pay for all the corruption I witnessed in that childhood. Yes, I actually witnessed some of it. It is hard to not see it happen when you live in the midst of it.

Examples:
- Polling places with shady "polling judges" run out of people's basements
- Inspection pay-offs
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:22 AM   #37
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This is a problem. Just because a majority of people don't have something doesn't mean they should get to vote it away for those that do. Maybe alter it for the future (like my private mega crop did 18 years into my career), but not undo contracts that were already honored by one party.

My DW is a RI teacher and got screwed by our government, who added 7 years to her retirement age, reduced her benefits and increased her contributions. This sets a terrible precedent about being able to vote away contracted obligations just because the angry mob is jealous.

What you call "voting away" in another world it is called BANKRUPTCY. If something can't be paid, contract or not, it won't. Municipalities, and states for that matter, are as susceptible to bad decisions and economic down drafts as companies, which is what causes bankruptcies. There is no logical reason why municipalities, or states, therefore in extreme instances of economic distress ought not to extinguish/reorder its financial obligations. Quite frankly, the real threat of bankruptcy might make all future parties more realistic.


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Old 03-25-2016, 07:31 AM   #38
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Fine. Then substitute "social security and Medicare" for pension, and see how the shoe feels on the other foot. Oh wait though, that will never happen simply because the majority of citizens would be impacted. So it's ok to vote away anything the majority doesn't benefit from. Gotcha.

Bankruptcy shouldn't be a way to run away from debts. Raising taxes and cutting government jobs and expenses is an alternative - just not palatable to those without pensions. But doing so would make ALL taxpayers share in the burden of fixing what their elected officials messed up instead of unfairly forcing that burden to be carried only by pensioners - who did their share by working decades and contributing in many cases around 10% of their lifetime income.
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:39 AM   #39
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There is only so much money out there at the State level, but an unlimited amount st the Federal level.
Reminds me of a conversation I once had with a well educated lady. She was telling me about how she got sick in England and it was 'completely free!'.

I said: "Well, someone was paying for it"

She said "Yes, the government"
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:47 AM   #40
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Fine. Then substitute "social security and Medicare" for pension, and see how the shoe feels on the other foot. Oh wait though, that will never happen simply because the majority of citizens would be impacted. So it's ok to vote away anything the majority doesn't benefit from. Gotcha.



Bankruptcy shouldn't be a way to run away from debts. Raising taxes and cutting government jobs and expenses is an alternative - just not palatable to those without pensions. But doing so would make ALL taxpayers share in the burden of fixing what their elected officials messed up instead of unfairly forcing that burden to be carried only by pensioners - who did their share by working decades and contributing in many cases around 10% of their lifetime income.

Staying focused on the issue of bankruptcy (so as to avoid Porky), generally speaking bankruptcy is not "a way to run away from debts". It is, however, a legal process that acknowledges the fact that the debts cannot be paid (again what can't be paid, won't); and, thus a legal mechanism (bankruptcy) is in place to orderly deal with fairly satisfying/extinguishing financial obligations.

Honestly, I would add that personally I do not think it an issue for most voters of "pension jealousy" as tax fatigue. Moreover, Social Security and Medicare, which while benefitting from the fact that they are obligations of the Federal government who has a printing press (which states and municipalities do not) will be susceptible to changes as well. Again what can't be paid, won't equally applies to Federal governments even with their printing presses (as printing presses only forestall but do not eliminate the laws of economics).


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