-Dave Davison, President, Illinois Retired Teachers Association
It is March and many 2017 Activities of the IRTA and our Local Units are already underway. Our State Office is closely monitoring the activities over at the capital where the State Legislature is in session. Some local units have already met, and two IRTA State Committees have met-the rest soon will. Also two IRTA informational meetings were held on February 27 & 28, in Arizona; and the committee making plans for the October 30 & 31 Biennial IRTA Convention in Springfield has met twice.
A major issue being monitored closely by our IRTA State Office is the speculation the state may pass legislation to reduce or eliminate its subsidy for our Teachers Retirement Insurance Program (TRIP). You would have to expect the Governor to sign the legislation if it is passed, based on his having zeroed out the line item that provides the subsidy in his last two budgets. We are obtaining a legal opinion concerning this issue from the same law firm we worked with in getting the Illinois State Supreme Court to declare SB 1 unconstitutional.
Of course, I strongly support all the different efforts of our State Office and the efforts of our many IRTA member volunteers. Thank you to the hundreds of IRTA Retirees who are volunteering their time and expertise to help retired Illinois educators in a variety of different ways. The IRTA website address is irtaonline.org.