The Civic Federation was one of the strongest and most consistent voices calling for the repeal of the Seniors Ride Free subsidized transit program for all but the lowest income seniors. The program, which offered free rides to all senior citizens 65 and over, proved to be a major revenue drain for financially stressed mass transit operators across the state. After Governor Pat Quinn signed Public Act 096-1527 into law, transit operators may expect to save $37 to $90 million a year with the termination of the program.
Civic Federation Achievements
In the 119 years since its founding, the Civic Federation has been credited with an array of significant accomplishments in improving government efficiency, effectiveness and transparency.
The work of the Federation the 21st century has evolved from its work in the 20th century as a leading advocate for governmental fiscal responsibility and as an effective champion of rational tax policy. The Civic Federation now also places a greater emphasis on working with government officials to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of Chicago-area governments.
The following is a short round-up of the Civic Federation’s recent and historical achievements, collected as a service to our Board of Directors and the public.
The Illinois General Assembly heard the Civic Federation’s call for the State of Illinois to implement an accountability and performance reporting system. The Budgeting for Results initiative that was enacted as part of the fiscal year 2011 budget will now continue as an annual requirement with the signing of House Bill 5424 into law in February 2011. The purpose of the bill is to force the state to reduce spending to match its reasonably expected revenues, just as the Civic Federation’s state research institute has recommended in its reports on the state budget.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law two bills that represent significant first steps toward pension reform in Illinois. Senate Bill 1946 reduces pension benefits for state and local public employees not yet hired and Senate Bill 3538 does the same for police and fire employees across the state. The Civic Federation has long recommended similar reforms to the state pension system.