Illinois begins a second year without a full budget. Today (July 1) is the start of the new fiscal year and the beginning of the second year in which Illinois is without a full budget for government operations. Gov. Bruce Rauner praised the bipartisan compromise to get to a stopgap budget but said the work is not done.
“This is not a budget. This is not a balanced budget. This is not a solution to our long-term challenges. This is a bridge to reform,” Rauner said.
House Speaker Michael Madigan also said lawmakers aren’t done. “Very important work has been accomplished after serious compromise and good faith efforts but our job is not finished.”
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Madigan and Rauner have been at odds over reforms and spending since the governor took office. Rauner wants reforms he says will grow the economy while Madigan contends those reforms will hurt the middle class.
State Rep. Jack Franks, D-Woodstock, voted against the stopgap budget. He said the General Assembly is setting taxpayers up for a huge tax increase. “Our debt will continue to grow. Our unpaid bills will continue to grow. Our pension obligations will continue to grow and our state willfall farther and farther behind in paying its bills and our credit rating will probably be downgraded again,” he said.
State Sen. Jason Barickman, R-Bloomington, said more work needs to be done, especially in reforming the state’s education formula. “Many of us on both sides of the aisle recognize that there is more that can and should be done for the children and the future of our state,” he said.
The stopgap budget approved June 30 funds K-12 education for the entire year and road construction projects, some human services and government operations through the November election.