Undeterred and Hopeful
It was unfortunate that the Republican initiatives were not considered in the last days of the scheduled session. While it’s disappointing the General Assembly failed for the second year in a row to approve a state budget by May 31, there are hopeful signs of an eventual resolution to Illinois’ budget crisis.
Session days are expected to be scheduled on a weekly basis and working groups of lawmakers are also planning to continue meeting on unresolved issues, including the government and economic reforms sought by Republicans and the Governor.
Senate Republicans will continue to push for a complete and constitutional state budget, which means spending must match revenues. The Caucus will also insist on real reforms to rebuild and revitalize our state economy before any consideration of new taxes. Growing the economy and providing opportunities and prosperity for working families is the best and long-term way back to fiscal good health. After years of truly unbalanced budgets, Illinois is faced with unprecedented debt and deficits.
According to a recent report from the Illinois Comptroller’s office, the state’s backlog of more than 48,000 bills – money owed to social service agencies and vendors – totals $7 billion.