State Sen. Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) voted in support of Senate Bill 2039 Dec. 7, legislation that releases the state’s portion of the motor fuel tax (MFT) money and includes funding for 911 call centers, fire prevention, veterans’ homes, lottery winners, payment of utility bills, and other programs..
“With the winter season upon us, it’s imperative our local governments have this funding so they can purchase enough road salt and fix roadways so our citizens remain safe,” Righter said. “This bi-partisan compromise is a step toward ultimately fixing our state’s finances, passing a balanced budget, and moving Illinois forward.”
The state currently owes the city of Marshall thousands of dollars in unpaid utility bills for Illinois Department of Transportation facilities. In October, Marshall threatened to shut off power to these facilities unless the state paid up. In SB 2039, there is millions of dollars allocated for utility costs for state buildings and other services across Illinois.
“These are badly needed funds the city of Marshall and other local governments are rightfully owed,” Righter said. “It’s about time the state pay up. I want to stress, originally, House Speaker Michael Madigan didn’t want this legislation to go through. However, this legislation is proof that political pressure can work, as constituents voiced their concerns in large numbers. That’s the best formula that can work to solve the state’s overall budget impasse going forward.”
Funding for police training services, nursing home licensing and inspections, and the state portion of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is also included in this legislation.
SB 2039 now heads to Governor Rauner.