Illinois lawmakers propose IOU's for pension payback

SPRINGFIELD, IL (AP) - Illinois Democrats are considering the idea of IOUs for government pension systems as they try to piece together a new state budget.

It's just one of many ideas under discussion as officials grapple with a huge deficit.

Illinois owes $3.7 billion to the pension systems for state employees, downstate teachers and more.

Gov. Pat Quinn originally proposed borrowing the money to make that payment. Now he suggests borrowing half the money and giving the pension systems bonds to cover the other half.

Essentially, the state would be promising to pay off the bonds with interest over the next eight years.

The pension systems object. They say the plan would not yield enough money and might endanger their tax-exempt status.

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