Illinois Senate OKs Budget, Not Power To Implement

May 17, 2017

The Senate has approved a $36.5 billion budget that was initiated by minority Republicans. But it turned down authority to implement it.

Credit Jenna Dooley / WNIJ

The Democratic-controlled chamber voted 31-21 to approve the proposed outlay for the year that begins July 1.

The vote looked like a breakthrough after five months of wrangling over the so-called "grand bargain" budget compromise.

But it was quickly followed by a vote on authority to implement the budget. It failed by three votes, 27-24.

The budget proposal was introduced by Assistant Republican Leader Bill Brady of Bloomington. Senate President John Cullerton of Chicago put the plan up for a vote. He urged action because of frustration over lack of progress.

The plan would spend about $1 billion less than the one Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner proposed. Democrats boasted the two sides had negotiated $3.7 billion in spending cuts.

The state has been without an annual budget since 2015. The session is scheduled to end May 31.