Chicago wants to open a casino to help pay down its public pension debt

In Politics by Michael Rae

Chicago recently announced it is in the process of opening a new casino with the intent to use its revenue to pay down significant unfunded liabilities in the city’s public safety pension plan. According to estimates in the recommendation report by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s office, the casino will cost around $1.7 billion to build and generate roughly $200 million per year.

But even under the proposal’s optimistic outlook, the casino’s annual revenue is only a fraction of the annual required contributions to the city’s police and fire pension fund. Due to the gargantuan amount of unfunded liabilities the city already