By AP/Illinois Public Radio
St. Louis, MO – Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed off on the state's budget Thursday, making $1.4 billion in cuts.
Quinn said the new budget will help decrease spending and focus the state's energy on important public services.
The cuts will hit health services and higher education the hardest, as well as the state's police, public defenders, and attorneys. Social service advocates are skeptical that the budget will keep vital services intact.
Quinn had long called for a tax increase to fix the state's $13 billion budget hole. He said he had to make cuts when legislators did not approve any of his proposed tax increases.
The governor said he's likely to make more cuts this year using his emergency budget power.