Governor hopes conference committee can fix pensions

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor Quinn and legislative leaders are considering a new plan to tackle the state's pension crisis. The idea comes as lawmakers continue debating two rivaling pension reform bills.

In a house committee Tuesday, representatives heard from the AFL-CIO president who supports the senate president's plan. He says the plan is constitutional and gives union workers and retirees more choices. But, some lawmakers are still pushing for a bill by House Speaker Michael Madigan (D).

Quinn's conference committee idea would call for five members from each chamber to come together and sort out a plan. Then their report would be signed by at least six of the committee members before moving for votes in the house and senate. The approach hasn't been used since 2005.

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