The bill passed the House 110-0 in March. The legislation seeks to require cities, villages or other governments employing a former lawmaker for short periods of time to pay for the additional pension expenses that go with the new job.
"(The Senate vote) says unfortunately part of the General Assembly doesn't get it. ... It's almost a lack of recognition that there's a problem and abuses are taking place," said HouseRepublican leader Tom Cross, of Oswego, who sponsored the bill.
Last year, the Tribune and WGN-TV disclosed a pension windfall for former Democratic Rep. Robert Molaro, of Chicago. Molaro nearly doubled the $64,000 legislative pension he would've gotten without the boost from working one month as an aide to Chicago Ald. Edward Burke, chairman of the City Council Finance Committee. Molaro received a $12,000 paycheck for the advising job and for writing a 19-page white paper on pensions. He was able to annualize the paycheck over 12 months and base his government pension on a $144,000 salary.
Sen. Donne Trotter, D-Chicago, voted against sending the bill to the full Senate because he said it's "people overreacting to, in most cases, very isolated incidents."