Gov. Bruce Rauner has a specific request for Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan regarding state-employee pay: Don’t intervene.
A St. Clair County judge last year ordered the state to keep paying state employees during the budget impasse. In a separate case the Illinois Supreme Court recently ruled that the state can’t pay state employee raises if there’s no appropriation.
Rauner is concerned that ruling could lead the attorney general to file a motion to block state-employee pay, something the governor said June 2 would create a crisis.
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“I’m asking Attorney General Lisa Madigan: Don’t try to stop our state government employees from being paid. Don’t hold up salaries,” Rauner said.
The attorney general’s press secretary, Annie Thompson, said, “[T]he best way to ensure state employees are paid for the rest of this fiscal year and all of the next fiscal year is for the governor to work with the Legislature to pass an appropriation to cover state-employee pay.” The response did not provide any update on a review to possibly file a motion to block pay.
Illinois Comptroller Leslie Munger’s spokesman, Rich Carter, said paychecks will continue to go out.
“We’re continuing to follow the ruling of the St. Clair County Court that required the comptroller’s office to continue processing employee payroll going forward,” Carter said.
The state hasn’t had a budget since June 30, 2015.