A former mayor turned state legislator weighs in on the potential impact of cuts to state aid to local governments. A 50 percent cut to that aid would hurt, says State Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove), who served as mayor of Downers Grove from 2007 to 2011.

While the governor justified the proposed cut by saying local governments have billions in reserves, Sandack says some towns and cities are struggling financially. When it comes to cutting funding, however, he doesn't see how the state could pick and choose which towns receive reduced funding.


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My gut tells me that probably is not something that could be done, Sandack said, and even if it legally could be done, I don't know how you do it operationally.

While Sandack says local governments shouldn't be surprised by the proposed cuts, he cautions that it's only a proposal, and he's open to compromises to soften the blow on local budgets.

I've talked to some municipal leaders, many of whom say, Look, we need a phase-in on this so we can prepare down the line. I understand that. I don't think it's unreasonable, Sandack said.

Once the cuts are finalized, Sandack hopes towns and cities focus on reducing spending before considering options like raising property taxes.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio / www.AltonDailyNews.com)