state budget

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he doesn't want to call the General Assembly into special session for votes on a budget even though there are just 10 days left in the fiscal year.

The Republican told reporters Tuesday that special sessions in the recent past have produced only hotter tempers.

Rauner says he'll "evaluate options" in the coming days to avoid the shutdown of ongoing projects and delays to the opening of public schools.

Winnebago County Bar Association

Illinois is approaching a new fiscal year without a state budget. The head of an organization that helps fund social service agencies says citizens need to demand more from their lawmakers. 

Paul Logli is president and CEO of United Way of Rock River Valley. He told the crowd at the Rockford Urban Ministries annual meeting Friday that no matter where they stand politically, they have to be unforgiving of ALL state lawmakers about the budget impasse.

Illinois Lottery

Illinois Lottery officials say they support a short-term budget proposed by Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner because it would pay lottery winners.

The state of Illinois remains without a budget after Rauner and Democratic leaders couldn't come to an agreement. Last year lottery winners sued when the state withheld winnings because of lack of a budget.

A patchwork plan allowed lottery winners to eventually be paid but it expires June 30, the end of the budget year.

Flickr user / alamosbasement "old school" (CC BY 2.0)

More than a dozen school superintendents have written a letter to Republican Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner accusing him of playing politics with education funding.

School leaders including from Chicago, Peoria and East Moline sent the letter Monday to Rauner. They say schools won't open on time and call Illinois' funding formula the nation's most "regressive." 

They also claim stand-alone school funding bills Republicans introduced at session's end continue unequal spending.

Phil Masterton / WNIJ

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner joined a number of local lawmakers in Loves Park to address the budget situation.

    

The officials didn’t hold back. Rauner was already quoted as saying the spring session of the General Assembly ended in “stunning failure.”

Over the last few days, Rauner has been criss-crossing the state to draw attention to his disappointment.

He made a stop Thursday morning at the Winnebago/Boone County Regional Office of Education.

Eastern Illinois University

 A fund set up to help Eastern Illinois University employees who lost jobs due to the state's budget stalemate is taking applications from potential recipients. According to the Mattoon Journal-Gazette, the group called Support EIU Employees has raised more than $12,000. 

The group is taking applications from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesdays in the upstairs lounge in the County Market grocery store in Charleston. Eastern Illinois is located in Charleston, about 50 miles south of Champaign. 

Sangamon County Historical Society / sangamoncountyhistory.org

Governor Bruce Rauner shuttered the Illinois State museum last fall, saying the closure was a necessary cost-saving measure. This week, his administration announced the Springfield branch of the museum and the Dickson Mounds location will reopen on July second, if a legislative committee approves a plan to charge adults a five dollar admission fee. That committee meets June 14th.

 

 

 

 

Brian Mackey

The inability of Illinois Democrats to agree on a budget leaves open a window for Governor Bruce Rauner to push one of his own.

The Republican is doing a campaign-style tour to push for a skeleton budget. He says it would keep government's basic functions going until January -- except for education. 

He wants schools fully funded, for the whole year. Making sure schools have the money to open come fall is a top priority for most legislators. But they’re divided over how much to spend on education.

FLICKR User Jim Bowen

The prospects that Illinois' nearly yearlong budget stalemate will soon end are quickly diminishing even though Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner says he's still "hopeful" for a deal.

Legislative leaders were meeting with Rauner Thursday afternoon. But Democrats have so far ignored Rauner's calls for compromise.

House Democrats have approved their own budget that the governor says is $7 billion out of balance.

His aides say he'll likely veto it if the plan gets to his desk. It includes education funding but Rauner hasn't said what he'll do with that portion of the plan.

State of Illinois

Illinois' top political leaders remain divided. Tomorrow there will be only eight days left for them to reach a budget deal.

It's crunch time, says Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno:

"It is critically important that we complete this task within the next eight days or it becomes much more difficult."

More difficult, because it takes a supermajority -- rather than a simple one -- to pass a budget after the end of this month.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has gone out of his way to strike an optimistic tone that it can happen.

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