The TRS Board's fiduciary duty to its 417,000 members is its paramount concern. The payment of future TRS benefits is jeopardized without a credible plan to address the System's long-term sustainability. The TRS Board and staff unanimously adopts the following positions and will actively pursue their realization as a state government budget is developed for fiscal year 2020:
- TRS opposes any fiscal year 2020 budget for the state of Illinois that will appropriate to the System less than $4,813,577,696, the contribution calculated under state pension funding law and certified by the System on January 14, 2019.
- TRS opposes any extension of the target date currently in statute for the System to reach 90 percent funding. The target should remain no later than fiscal year 2045.
- TRS repeats its long-standing warning that the state's current pension funding law perpetually locks in underfunding for the system. A "full funding" state contribution for TRS in fiscal year 2020 is $7,878,670,709, as certified in January of this year.
- TRS opposes any expansion of the current member "buyout" program if an expanded program does not fund the buyouts with monies other than from System assets. At a funding level of 40 percent, TRS is not accumulating any assets to pay the future benefits of active members and could not afford to buy them out.
- We respectfully request that, as in recent years, TRS and our System actuaries participate in the fiscal analysis and evaluation of any proposals that would impact the System and its members.