Illinois is facing a $1 billion annual increase in retirement payments in Chicago for the next four years. Mayor Rahm Emmanuel feels that the best solution for his city is to funnel marijuana revenue directly into the pension fund. He sees that move as part of a three-pronged attack that includes revenue from a new casino in the area and also a cap to specific benefits that are given out.
However, the reality of legalization for Illinois, while more favourable than in previous years, is still a ways from a reality. The incoming Gov. J.B. Pritzker is in favour of marijuana legalization. However, details and a timeline of such a move are still up in the air.
The current state of pension funding in New Jersey, meanwhile, is hitting dire straits. The state has around 3,000 retirees who get six figures a year in pension benefits. This adds up to $11 billion per year for the 340,000 retirees in the state; that’s not to mention that each year, that total grows by around 10,000 retirees.