The We Are One Illinois coalition of labor unions and other plaintiffs in the lawsuit over Illinois' pension reform law filed a motion Thursday in Sangamon County, calling on the circuit court to consider a July Illinois Supreme Court decision, which they say "confirms that the Pension Protection Clause in the Illinois Constitution is absolute and without exception, even with respect to the fiscal circumstances alleged by the state in its defense."
We Are One Illinois and the suit's other plaintiffs are also asking the circuit court to enter judgment in their favor.
In the Kanerva v. Weems case, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled in July that the "state's provision of health insurance premium subsidies for retired state workers is a constitutionally protected pension benefit that the state is precluded from diminishing or impairing," a news release from the coalition reads.
We Are One Illinois issued the following statement:
The Kanerva decision confirms what we have always argued, that the state's constitutional language guards against any diminishment or impairment of pension benefits that Senate Bill 1 imposes. We believe, then, that the State's defense is without merit and so have asked the Court in this motion to rule in our favor on the State's defense that seeks to justify Senate Bill 1. We maintain that the constitution protects the hard-earned and promised retirement savings of our members and remain ready to work with any legislator willing to develop a fair and legal solution to our state's challenges.