Letter: WIU will remain open

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While it is certainly unacceptable that our state officials continue to stall on passing a budget, as the editorial “Unacceptable” that appeared as part of a Gatehouse editorial series indicates, it is also unacceptable for an editorial to allude to the closure of select universities as the May 23 PJS “Unacceptable” editorial did.

The editorial also mentions the dire straits faced by mental health services, domestic violence shelters, and others as a result of the stalemate. However, these are mentioned in general terms; specific agencies are unnamed. A mention of the impact of the impasse on public higher education in general is sufficient to make the point, much like another Gatehouse newspaper chose to do in its “Unacceptable” version.

Public universities certainly face challenges as students are being driven out of state because of Illinois’ fiscal crisis and indecision. However, statements without proper attribution do nothing to alleviate the concerns of students and their families; they only fuel the rumor fire. We agree with the editorial’s premise: The budget situation is beyond unacceptable. It is harmful to education, social services, health care, etc. And our state legislators are aware of our concerns and needs. We have been a vocal, steady presence in Springfield.

Recently, Western Illinois University President Jack Thomas sent a letter to the university community to address rumors, as these inaccuracies damage the institution. Western Illinois University will remain open. We are actively recruiting students, accepting applications, and planning for the future.

Darcie Shinberger

Assistant Vice President, Advancement & Public Services

Director, University Relations

Macomb

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May 26, 2017 at 11:10AM

Letter: WIU will remain open

Voters take out anger on ‘dirt bag’ lawmakers over budget impasse

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SPRINGFIELD — Minutes after state Sen. Toi Hutchinson helped to pass a controversial revenue bill that was met with major Republican resistance, she was inundated with harsh words on her Facebook page.

“No more takes [sic] you dirt bags stop screwing the taxpayers!!!!!!!!” one Facebook user wrote.

“How dare you raise my taxes in this corrupt state. You are ruining people’s lives with your tax and spend ways. I literally hate you,” another person wrote.

State Sen. Toi Hutchinson said she has been getting lots of negative comments on Facebook. | Screenshot

Illinois lawmakers — many of whom face uncertain re-election possibilities next year — are being inundated by comments, insults and suggestions as the clock ticks toward the end of the legislative session amid a historic and politically driven budget impasse that’s left the state in the lurch.

State universities and social service agencies haven’t received funds since Jan. 1 when a partial budget expired.

Lawmakers say constituents are amping up the pressure to stop the bleeding.

“People are so angry. And if they’re not impacted by any of the hard stuff, they zero in on the things that they hate the most. It’s in the midst of the environment that we’re in. It’s the . . . trash comments and the people who try to hijack my Facebook page,” Hutchinson, D-Olympia Fields, said. “Go to my state Facebook page. Just take a look. It is cruel, absolutely cruel.”

Hutchinson said she receives “constant” calls about MAP college grants. She represents Governors State University, Kankakee Community College and Prairie State College.

State Sen. Toi Hutchinson said she has been getting lots of negative comments on Facebook. | Screenshot

“Not only did the lack of MAP grants wreak havoc over these institutions, but I can’t tell you how many calls I get from people who say ‘I can’t finish this semester,’” Hutchinson said.

In Democratic State Sen. Heather Stean’s 7th district, which encompasses North Side and Northwest Side Chicago neighborhoods, a non-profit plans in June to close some of its facilities that help take care of people with disabilities and mental-health issues if there’s no budget. Another organization which helps to provide shelter for domestic-violence victims called to tell her they’re planning layoffs because they haven’t been able to pay employees all year.

Despite this, Steans says her constituents aren’t paying attention to the barbs being thrown in the political war between Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago. They just care about the results of it.

“I think people are really frustrated and fed up and to some extent don’t even know what to do with the fact that we don’t have a budget. I don’t think they want to hear about the pointing and blaming. They want us to all step up and do our job,” Steans said.

State Sen. Chris Nybo, R-Westmont, says his constituents are largely calling, emailing and stopping by to complain about their property taxes.

“Nobody is happy. The constituents I represent, they don’t care about scoring political points and so they don’t think it’s good when you make a good argument or when we really stick it to the speaker or the Democrats,” Nybo said. “They just want to see things get done. They’re practical people. . . . I don’t think they’re going to put up with it anymore.”

At baseball, games, hockey games, and when he’s dropping his kids off to school, State Rep. Michael McAuliffe, D- Chicago, said he’s hearing it all.

“They’re telling me how desperate they are, in my suburban areas as well as the city. They’re at wits’ ends. They don’t know what else to do,” McAuliffe said.

Constituents are asking for cuts, not new taxes, McAuliffe says. And many on fixed incomes are worrying if they’ll lose their homes: “Someone who lives in the city of Chicago, last year they saw their water rates go up. They saw a garbage tax. Everywhere you look there’s a new tax. And they’re squeezed all the way to the end.”

State Rep. David McSweeney, R-Barrington Hills, says he’s getting an earful, too.

“People don’t understand why we’re not funding social-service agencies and higher education,” McSweeney said, adding he’s receiving calls about the Pioneer Center for Human Services in McHenry County. “There is no good explanation.”

He’s also hearing complaints from school superintendents worried about whether their schools will be properly funded. And they ask some political questions too.

“People ask me, ‘Why hasn’t the governor been meeting with the leaders?’” McSweeney said. “I don’t have a good answer.”

House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang, D-Skokie, says he’s getting calls from parents of high school students asking whether they should send their kids to an Illinois school or out-of-state.

“It’s hard to give them an answer when we treat higher education the way that we do,” Lang said.

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May 26, 2017 at 12:21PM

Voters take out anger on ‘dirt bag’ lawmakers over budget impasse

The Historic Budget Crisis That’s Threatening the Future of Public Colleges and Universities

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Illinois’ budget standoff poses an existential threat to public higher education in the state.

Illinois has not passed a real budget in nearly two years, the first state to go that long without a budget since the Great Depression. Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has refused to sign off any budget that doesn’t also curtail collective bargaining rights, leading to a showdown with the state’s Democrats. 

Much attention has been paid to the politics of this fight, but what do the effects of the lingering crisis look like in people’s day-to-day lives? Stranded by the State—an 8-part video series produced in partnership with Kartemquin Films—follows the families, workers and students living through these de facto budget cuts, showing the ways they deteriorate the fabric of Illinois communities.

The series incorporates data connecting the situation in Illinois to long-term trends of austerity nationwide—including the staggering cuts proposed in President Trump’s first budget.

This episode spotlights the effects of the Illinois budget crisis on public higher education. In the face of increasing cuts to funding, total enrollment has plummeted across Illinois state universities in recent years. At the same time, tuition has increased for students by nearly 25 percent. 

This situation has led to skyrocketing student debt and public colleges and universities that are struggling to keep their doors open. But as this episode shows, students, professors and state residents are fighting back to save public higher ed.

if you like this, check out:

The Historic Budget Crisis That’s Threatening the Future of Public Colleges and Universities

IVCC to reduce operating costs

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Illinois Valley Community College’s is expected to reduce operating costs 3.7 percent next year, members of the board’s audit-finance committee learned Tuesday night.

“We have reduced operating costs and used zero-based budgeting to the point where there are few areas to make reductions other than in personnel,” said Vice President for Business Services and Finance Cheryl Roelfsema.

Since 2012, IVCC has reduced personnel costs by about $1.5 million by not filling 33 vacancies following resignations and retirements, she said.

The last time it passed a budget in 2015, the state appropriated IVCC $2.7 million. The $21.4 million 2018 operating budget anticipates just 50 percent of that appropriation or about $1.3 million.

“We will work with budget officers over the next six months on an expenditure plan should state funding fall below 50 percent,” Roelfsema said.

Zero-based budgeting is a method of accounting in which all expenses must be justified and start from a “zero base,” Roelfsema said, adding, every line item is analyzed for its needs and costs.

The college anticipates the current budget ending June 30 will have a deficit of $305,000, which will be covered by reserves.

“It is a credit to staff, faculty and our board that for two years we have carefully monitored spending and reduced costs while continuing to provide high-quality education and services to our students,” said President Jerry Corcoran.

The full board will review the tentative budget at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 13.

Audit-finance also reviewed the Information Technology Services strategic plan for 2017-20 that includes expansion of the virtual desktop initiative, website redesign and enhanced document imaging.

In other business, the committee:

  • Heard from Gary Gauger of Midwest Energy regarding potential savings in electricity purchasing. If IVCC contracted with MidAmerican (also known as Homefield Energy) or Constellation Energy, the college could save up to $8,500 per year, Gauger said.
  • Learned dual credit enrollment continues to account for about 10 percent of overall enrollment. The Free and Reduced Lunch waiver generated additional credit hours and provided access to college for a greater number of capable students. Students qualifying for the Free and Reduced Lunch in district high schools took 678 credit hours over the two semesters combined.

The full board meets next at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, June 8.










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May 24, 2017 at 03:14AM

IVCC to reduce operating costs

Our View: Unacceptable

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That one word perfectly sums up the pain, dysfunction and instability Capitol politicians have inflicted on Illinois by their failure to provide a permanent balanced state budget for two years.

As the state’s credit ratings have been repeatedly downgraded, as residents sought greener pastures elsewhere, as community colleges and universities have been gutted, as businesses closed up shop and as social service agencies turned away the most vulnerable residents … elected officials have failed to do their job and show political courage to make the necessary painful decisions.

Who they blame is determined by whether a D or R follows their name. Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner is to blame. No, it’s Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan. Don’t forget the decades of politicians who made terrible financial decisions based on what would get them re-elected, not what was fiscally prudent.

The finger-pointing has gone on for far too long.

The state’s fiscal problems have created a crisis throughout Illinois — except in the state Capitol. Maybe the dome deflects the misery that permeates the rest of Illinois. But it can no longer shield elected officials from accepting the blame each member of the House and Senate, and the governor, bears for the atrocious state of the state.

The stack of unpaid bills climbed above $14 billion last week. The 2016 fiscal year, which ended last June, had a budgetary deficit of $9.6 billion; we shudder to think of what it’s going to be at the end of next month. The five state-funded pension systems are short about $130 billion. Each new financial report paints an even bleaker picture.

Still, every time progress seemed to have been made this year, it faded as quickly as it emerged because the need for a political win was more important. Because most Illinoisans have not been directly inconvenienced by the lack of a budget, it’s been easy to ignore.

But the impasse affects all of us. In order for the state to pay off its unpaid bills, shore up the pension systems and eliminate its deficit, it would cost every man, woman and child who lives in Illinois roughly $12,000 each.

Here’s how you calculate your share of the bill:

  • If every one of the state’s 12.8 million residents kicked in $1,094, we could pay off the $14 billion in unpaid bills.
  • The unfunded pension liability is an estimated $130 billion, due over the next 30 years. If we wanted to ensure today that it will be solvent, each resident would need to contribute $10,156 so state retirees will get their retirement benefits.
  • Don’t forget the $9.6 billion structural budget deficit at the end of fiscal year 2016; add in $750 more per person.

The ugly truth is, we are all going to pay for it somehow. And because politicians have abdicated their most basic duty for two years, the necessary cuts will be deeper and tax hikes will be higher than they should be.

Good. Now get informed on issues, and encourage others to do the same. There’s a reason that millions get spent on relentlessly nasty political ads — they work. They sway the casual voter who doesn’t care enough to dig for facts, or they leave others too disgusted by the spectacle and negativity to participate. Elections shouldn’t be decided by who can throw the most cash at attack ads. It’s up to all of us to keep that from being the determinant.

Next, get involved. Pick up your phone and call your state representative, senator and the governor’s office. Tell them how they have made it an embarrassment to be from Illinois. Share your anger that the significant issues that need attention — school funding reform, creating a thriving economy and building public universities into centers of innovation, to name a few — have been ignored.

A year ago we declared “Enough.” The day after, the governor and lawmakers passed a six-month stopgap spending plan that did not provide lasting stability. That’s not good enough.

It’s time to demand that Governor Rauner and our lawmakers do what is right. It’s time for the budget to come first. To not do so will cement their legacy with one word that encapsulates the sorry condition of our state.

Our View: Time to take action

If you don’t depend on the state for health care, social services or for business, it can be easy to ignore the nearly budget impasse that has created the sorry state Illinois is in.

But it’s reached the point where that cannot continue: The gridlock will endure unless residents become engaged in the political process. It is time to sound the alarm on how dire the situation is and how much worse the costs will become the longer Illinois does not have a permanent spending plan.

We want you to be informed. We want you to ask questions and demand better when a politician’s answer is to blame the other party.

More importantly, we want you to take action.

Here’s how to contact the governor, House and Senate leaders and your local senators and representatives. We encourage you to reach out to any and all of these politicians to express your frustration.

We have even included a “postcard” that you can clip, copy and send to the politicians who represent you.

Illinois’ current fiscal state is unacceptable. It’s time we demand our elected officials did something about it.

It’s time to demand a change. Tell our elected officials it’s time to get to work:

State officers

207 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0244;

House Speaker Michael Madigan

300 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-5350.

Senate President John Cullerton

327 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-2728.

Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno

309G Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-9407

House Minority Leader Jim Durkin

316 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0494

103A Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-6216.

Bloomington district office: 2203 Eastland Drive, Suite 3; (309) 664-4440.

119A Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0228.

Decatur district office: Macon County Building, 141 S. Main St.; (217) 429-8110.

103C Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-5755.

Vandalia district office: 310 W. Gallatin; (618) 283-3000.

309M Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-6674.

Mattoon district office: 88 Broadway Ave., Suite 1; (217) 235-6033.

108E Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 558-1006.

Decatur district office: 5130 Hickory Point Frontage Road, Suite 103; (217) 330-9356.

227N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8071.

Litchfield district office: 301 N. Monroe; (217) 324-5200.

1128E Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0053.

205N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0066.

Salem district office: 1370 W. Main St., Suite A; (618) 548-9080.

204N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8398.

Shelbyville district office: 203 N. Cedar St.; (217) 774-1306.

632 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8163.

Decatur district office: 5130 Hickory Point Frontage Road, Suite 100; (217) 876-1968.

200-1N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 558-1040.

632 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-2087.

Olney district office: 219 E. Main; (618) 392-0108.

E-2 Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 524-0353.

Decatur district office, 1301 E. Mound Road Suite 270, (217) 877-9636.

The lack of a state budget for nearly two years has made it embarrassing to be from Illinois.

The self-created crisis by politicians has caused a huge deficit that is accompanied by an even larger stack of unpaid bills. It has harmed the most vulnerable of the state’s residents, crippled our higher education system and caused businesses to hesitate to plan for the future.

I’m tired of our politicians putting their party first. Please work in a bipartisan manner to pass a permanent balanced state budget for Illinois.

To not do so is unacceptable.

Don’t miss another special section.








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May 23, 2017 at 12:14PM

Our View: Unacceptable

Our View: Unacceptable

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That one word perfectly sums up the pain, dysfunction and instability Capitol politicians have inflicted on Illinois by their failure to provide a permanent balanced state budget for two years.

As the state’s credit ratings have been repeatedly downgraded, as residents sought greener pastures elsewhere, as community colleges and universities have been gutted, as businesses closed up shop and as social service agencies turned away the most vulnerable residents … elected officials have failed to do their job and show political courage to make the necessary painful decisions.

Who they blame is determined by whether a D or R follows their name. Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner is to blame. No, it’s Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan. Don’t forget the decades of politicians who made terrible financial decisions based on what would get them re-elected, not what was fiscally prudent.

The finger-pointing has gone on for far too long.

The state’s fiscal problems have created a crisis throughout Illinois — except in the state Capitol. Maybe the dome deflects the misery that permeates the rest of Illinois. But it can no longer shield elected officials from accepting the blame each member of the House and Senate, and the governor, bears for the atrocious state of the state.

The stack of unpaid bills climbed above $14 billion last week. The 2016 fiscal year, which ended last June, had a budgetary deficit of $9.6 billion; we shudder to think of what it’s going to be at the end of next month. The five state-funded pension systems are short about $130 billion. Each new financial report paints an even bleaker picture.

Still, every time progress seemed to have been made this year, it faded as quickly as it emerged because the need for a political win was more important. Because most Illinoisans have not been directly inconvenienced by the lack of a budget, it’s been easy to ignore.

But the impasse affects all of us. In order for the state to pay off its unpaid bills, shore up the pension systems and eliminate its deficit, it would cost every man, woman and child who lives in Illinois roughly $12,000 each.

Here’s how you calculate your share of the bill:

  • If every one of the state’s 12.8 million residents kicked in $1,094, we could pay off the $14 billion in unpaid bills.
  • The unfunded pension liability is an estimated $130 billion, due over the next 30 years. If we wanted to ensure today that it will be solvent, each resident would need to contribute $10,156 so state retirees will get their retirement benefits.
  • Don’t forget the $9.6 billion structural budget deficit at the end of fiscal year 2016; add in $750 more per person.

The ugly truth is, we are all going to pay for it somehow. And because politicians have abdicated their most basic duty for two years, the necessary cuts will be deeper and tax hikes will be higher than they should be.

Good. Now get informed on issues, and encourage others to do the same. There’s a reason that millions get spent on relentlessly nasty political ads — they work. They sway the casual voter who doesn’t care enough to dig for facts, or they leave others too disgusted by the spectacle and negativity to participate. Elections shouldn’t be decided by who can throw the most cash at attack ads. It’s up to all of us to keep that from being the determinant.

Next, get involved. Pick up your phone and call your state representative, senator and the governor’s office. Tell them how they have made it an embarrassment to be from Illinois. Share your anger that the significant issues that need attention — school funding reform, creating a thriving economy and building public universities into centers of innovation, to name a few — have been ignored.

A year ago we declared “Enough.” The day after, the governor and lawmakers passed a six-month stopgap spending plan that did not provide lasting stability. That’s not good enough.

It’s time to demand that Governor Rauner and our lawmakers do what is right. It’s time for the budget to come first. To not do so will cement their legacy with one word that encapsulates the sorry condition of our state.

Our View: Time to take action

If you don’t depend on the state for health care, social services or for business, it can be easy to ignore the nearly budget impasse that has created the sorry state Illinois is in.

But it’s reached the point where that cannot continue: The gridlock will endure unless residents become engaged in the political process. It is time to sound the alarm on how dire the situation is and how much worse the costs will become the longer Illinois does not have a permanent spending plan.

We want you to be informed. We want you to ask questions and demand better when a politician’s answer is to blame the other party.

More importantly, we want you to take action.

Here’s how to contact the governor, House and Senate leaders and your local senators and representatives. We encourage you to reach out to any and all of these politicians to express your frustration.

We have even included a “postcard” that you can clip, copy and send to the politicians who represent you.

Illinois’ current fiscal state is unacceptable. It’s time we demand our elected officials did something about it.

It’s time to demand a change. Tell our elected officials it’s time to get to work:

State officers

207 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0244;

House Speaker Michael Madigan

300 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-5350.

Senate President John Cullerton

327 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-2728.

Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno

309G Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-9407

House Minority Leader Jim Durkin

316 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0494

103A Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-6216.

Bloomington district office: 2203 Eastland Drive, Suite 3; (309) 664-4440.

119A Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0228.

Decatur district office: Macon County Building, 141 S. Main St.; (217) 429-8110.

103C Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-5755.

Vandalia district office: 310 W. Gallatin; (618) 283-3000.

309M Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-6674.

Mattoon district office: 88 Broadway Ave., Suite 1; (217) 235-6033.

108E Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 558-1006.

Decatur district office: 5130 Hickory Point Frontage Road, Suite 103; (217) 330-9356.

227N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8071.

Litchfield district office: 301 N. Monroe; (217) 324-5200.

1128E Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0053.

205N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-0066.

Salem district office: 1370 W. Main St., Suite A; (618) 548-9080.

204N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8398.

Shelbyville district office: 203 N. Cedar St.; (217) 774-1306.

632 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-8163.

Decatur district office: 5130 Hickory Point Frontage Road, Suite 100; (217) 876-1968.

200-1N Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 558-1040.

632 Capitol Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 782-2087.

Olney district office: 219 E. Main; (618) 392-0108.

E-2 Stratton Office Building, Springfield, IL 62706; (217) 524-0353.

Decatur district office, 1301 E. Mound Road Suite 270, (217) 877-9636.

The lack of a state budget for nearly two years has made it embarrassing to be from Illinois.

The self-created crisis by politicians has caused a huge deficit that is accompanied by an even larger stack of unpaid bills. It has harmed the most vulnerable of the state’s residents, crippled our higher education system and caused businesses to hesitate to plan for the future.

I’m tired of our politicians putting their party first. Please work in a bipartisan manner to pass a permanent balanced state budget for Illinois.

To not do so is unacceptable.

Don’t miss another special section.








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May 23, 2017 at 12:14PM

Our View: Unacceptable

The Latest: House Democrats propose college grant program

http://ift.tt/2qLOTzt

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Latest on legislative action in Springfield (all times local):

11:30 a.m.


House Democrats have proposed a plan to subsidize higher education costs for college students who choose to stay in Illinois.

Democratic Reps. Lou Lang of Skokie and Will Guzzardi and Christian Mitchell of Chicago announced their plan Tuesday. It would provide full-time Illinois students attending a public university or community college with a yearly grant capped at $4,000.

Students who maintain a B average with families earning less than $125,000 annually would qualify.

Lang says the plan would support Illinois’ economy by incentivizing students to stay. He says over a quarter of the growing number of Illinois students attending out-of-state colleges never return.

Students would start receiving grants in 2018 at an estimated cost of $300 million.

The proposal would also create a faculty-retention fund and a debt relief program.

___

The bill is HB1316.

___

11:10 a.m.

Senate Democrats are proposing a backup state budget plan that doesn’t cut some vital areas as much as a proposal that narrowly won approval last week.

Sen. Heather Steans’ (STAYNZ’) plan would spend $37.3 billion. A measure spending 2 percent less was OK’d last week but with only Democratic votes.

It’s an attempt by the Senate to open the door to Illinois’ first annual budget in two years. First-term Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has sparred with Democrats who run the General Assembly over raising taxes to settle a deficit.

Steans’ budget plan projects the same level of spending Rauner himself proposed in February. The Democratic senator from Chicago says it still includes steep spending reductions but forgoes a previous $400 million cut to Medicaid.

Income and other taxes would be increased to bring in $5.5 billion.

___

4 a.m.

The Illinois Senate could take up some lingering issues related to the “grand bargain” budget compromise.

Senators were winding down to a possible vote Tuesday on changes to the workers’ compensation system. It’s one of the “structural” changes Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has demanded during the two-year budget stalemate.

Democrats have argued that significant cost-saving measures were enacted in 2011, but those savings have not been passed along to business owners in the form of lower premiums.

Democratic Senate President John Cullerton of Chicago made workers’ comp part of the attempted compromise he hatched with Republican Leader Christine Radogno (ruh-DOHN’-yoh) of Lemont (lih-MAHT’) last winter.

As it stands now, medical fees paid to doctors would be cut significantly under the bill. Medical fees were cut by 30 percent in 2011.


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May 23, 2017 at 05:31AM

The Latest: House Democrats propose college grant program