The new fiscal year is under way, and among the issues that still must be addressed are funding of the reduced fare program for disabled and low-income senior citizen public transportation users and a gambling expansion bill. The General Assembly didn’t provide funding for the Circuit Ride Free program, which provides reduced-fare rides for those who qualify. Gov. Pat Quinn says he is aware of the situation.
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“We’re gonna work with the General Assembly and we have some concepts that we are going to propose to other executive branch officers to see if we can work this out,” Quinn said. The Regional Transportation Authority says 84,000 low-income seniors and 58,000 disabled people utilize the program in the Chicago area; Downstate usage is less. On a gambling expansion bill that would add five new casinos and allow slot machines at race tracks, Quinn maintains that the bill hasn’t arrived on his desk and says as soon as it arrives his staff will go through it line by line. Quinn expects the bill to arrive “shortly.”