A group of social service providers that sued the state over lack of payment are pushing forward with their case. But the coalition has shrunk.
The Pay Now Coalition used to have nearly one hundred members. Now fewer than fifty have signed on to appeal a judge’s recent dismissal of their lawsuit.
Coalition chair Andrea Durbin says that courts can’t force lawmakers and the governor to raise taxes so Illinois can afford to pay up. But a judge could enforce the contracts the state has with social service providers.
“What judges can say is you need to find a way. You can’t escape your obligations. It’s on the other two branches of government to figure out how they’re going to pay. That’s their role,” Durbin said.
Since a stopgap budget was signed into law in June, some social service providers have received payment. But Durbin says there isn’t enough money in that plan to cover all the state owes.
The Ounce of Prevention Fund, which is headed by the governor's wife, is among the groups pursuing an appeal.