IL: Macon County sues Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac over transfer taxes

By   /  December 12, 2012  /  Illinois WatchBlog, WatchBlog  /  No Comments

HARDEST HIT: Only 13 percent of federal "Hardest Hit" Simulus funds intended to help struggling Floridians has actually been spent.

By Jayette Bolinski | Illinois Watchdog
SPRINGFIELD – Macon County is the latest Illinois county to file a lawsuit against Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac over failing to pay real estate transfer taxes on foreclosure properties.
Officials in the central Illinois county filed suit Dec. 4 in federal court in Springfield, asking a judge to order the [...]

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IL: Expert: Cash-balance pension proposal good, but falls short

By   /  December 11, 2012  /  Illinois, Pensions  /  1 Comment

The Illinois Capitol

By Jayette Bolinski | Illinois Watchdog
SPRINGFIELD – A hybrid “cash-balance” pension plan proposed by a group of rank-and-file Illinois lawmakers last week is a step in the right direction, but falls short of setting the state on a course for a healthy pension system, one national expert says.
It doesn’t do anything to address the state’s [...]

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IL: Federal appellate court strikes down Illinois’ ban on concealed carry

By   /  December 11, 2012  /  Illinois WatchBlog, WatchBlog  /  No Comments

LOCKED AND LOADED: A bill protecting gun owners from insurance discrimination advances in state legislature.

By Jayette Bolinski | Illinois Watchdog
CHICAGO – Illinois lawmakers have 180 days to craft a new law that allows concealed carry of weapons, according to a federal appellate court opinion handed down this morning.
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling stemmed from a case that challenged Illinois’ law against carrying concealed weapons.
“We are disinclined to [...]

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IL: Week in review – Pension reform hangs over lawmakers’ heads

By   /  December 7, 2012  /  Illinois, News  /  No Comments

MARTIRE: Ralph Martire, executive director of the Chicago-based Center for Tax and Budget Accountability

By Jayette Bolinski | Illinois Watchdog
SPRINGFIELD — Illinois lawmakers wrapped up their fall veto session Thursday, failing to make headway on comprehensive pension reform. Meanwhile, a bipartisan group of rank-and-file lawmakers unveiled a new reform proposal that could come up for a vote during the January “lame-duck” session.
Lawmakers unveil new pension-reform plan
Two Illinois pension experts [...]

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IL: Borrowing for old bills an ‘aah’ sure to be an ‘ugh,’ treasurer says

By   /  December 6, 2012  /  Featured, Illinois, News  /  1 Comment

Illinois Treasurer Judy Barr Topinka

By Jayette Bolinski | Illinois Watchdog
SPRINGFIELD — It’s really enough to make your head spin.
A proposal in the state legislature to borrow $4 billion to pay down the state’s backlog of bills could mean a double-whammy for Illinoisans who ponied up to pay off old bills as part of a 67-percent “temporary” personal income-tax hike.
The [...]

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