Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office argued last week in state court that state constitutional protections against impairing retiree pensions don’t extend to healthcare benefits.

Attorneys representing plaintiffs in four lawsuits in Sangamon County District Court are challenging legislation that took effect last July overhauling retiree healthcare subsidies by shifting more of the funding burden for premiums to recipients. They argued that language in the state constitution guarding against the diminishment or impairment of pension benefits extends to retiree healthcare.

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