Springfield (AP) -- The Illinois
House returns to work as the General Assembly gears up for a spring session
that promises a continuing struggle over how to close a $96 billion funding gap
in the state's public-employee pension system.
House members will be in session Wednesday and Thursday. Their Senate
counterparts return next week and both houses will meet in joint session Feb. 6
for Gov. Pat Quinn's State of the State address.
Lawmakers were last in Springfield
on Jan. 9 for the inauguration of the 98th General Assembly and met briefly the
That meeting followed a furious but disappointing six days closing the
last session. Lame-duck lawmakers failed to ink a deal to remedy years of
pension underfunding and reduce the multibillion-dollar annual payment to