Brian Mackey/Illinois Public Radio

When lawmakers in Springfield begin crafting a state budget for next year, they'll have $2 billion less to work with than they had last year.

That decrease stems from a drop in state's income tax rate. But a new survey says Illinoisans would be up for new revenue, if it meant fewer cuts.

Republican Bruce Rauner said he'd be open to new revenue sources, like expanding service taxes and taxing retirement income. But since being elected, Rauner has tweaked that message:

state of Illinois

Lawmakers will have nearly two billion dollars less to work with as they craft next year's budget.

There's one big reason Illinois isn't going to have that $1.9 billion to spend on assets like education, health care, foster care and long-term care.

Lucas Koprowski / The Courier

Illinois Republican Governor Bruce Rauner will present his budget for the financially struggling state this week. Many Democrats are concerned he will propose big cuts to social service agencies. 

Greg Harris is a Chicago-based state Representative. He heads a committee that appropriates money to agencies that manage public health, child welfare, and mental health programs.

"All that takes revenue and right now the state is facing a $6 billion dollar loss of revenue next year and I just don’t think that’s sustainable."


Next week, Governor Bruce Rauner will introduce a new spending plan for Illinois. But that’s supposed to focus on the next fiscal year; he also has to worry about the current budget.

State agencies are supposed to be running out of money at the end of the fiscal year, in June. Today, there’s no more money for a subsidized day care program or to pay prison guards. The budget lawmakers passed last spring–when Rauner was still a candidate–was intentionally incomplete.

State of Illinois

State education leaders urge Illinoisans to weigh in on their priorities for education as the state develops the 2016 K-12 budget.

The State Board of Education will hold public hearings to gather opinions and ideas about resources and funding. This year the hearings will also offer attendees an opportunity to give feedback on Senate Bill 16, which would distribute state dollars more equitably among public school districts. 

state of Illinois

Illinois will have a budget in place when the state's new fiscal year begins Tuesday. The governor signed it into law Monday. He left much of the plan approved by Democratic legislators intact, with a couple of exceptions meant to play well with voters.

Lawmaker Bothered By Interfund Borrowing

Jun 2, 2014

Democrats wanted to use the higher income tax rate to prop up the state budget. Instead, they turned to "interfund borrowing" which involves taking funds from hundreds of small pools of money earmarked for specific purposes.

Senator Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) doesn't support the idea.

"I'm concerned about how you're raising the money for those funds and whether or not you're spending the money from those funds the way you told the taxpayers or the contributors to that fund that you would spend it."

Final Stretch At Illinois Statehouse

May 20, 2013

Illinois lawmakers are set to meet every day through May 31st when the session is scheduled to adjourn.  Plans for the next state budget are expected to begin surfacing this week.

Other major issues before legislators include the state's pensions, same-sex marriage, and new casinos.

The House and Senate are working on dueling versions - the Senate, for example, is expected to fight against cuts to education.

Quinn signs new Illinois budget

Jul 1, 2012

The $33.7 billion dollar budget is $57 million dollars less than the budget lawmakers sent him. As promised, the governor is moving to close several state facilities, including Rockford's Singer Mental Health Center. 

Governor Pat Quinn delivered his State Budget Address Wednesday, announcing “today, our rendezvous with reality has arrived.”