No one says the $35.7 billion 2015 budget approved by the Illinois Legislature late last week is balanced. As the Belleville News Democrat reported, “Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski, a Senate budget negotiator, described the plan as ‘incomplete’ but the best lawmakers could do this session.
Despite years of cuts to the Illinois state budget, even more are ahead. Legislators are still deciding where else they can slash spending.
"Human services" is a legislative phrase that covers many departments and services, according to Representative Greg Harris.
"All the state departments dealing with health care, senior services, children services, so the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, Medicaid, human services, mental health, substance abuse, Department of Aging, DCFS, public health and veterans," said Harris.
Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Amanda Vinicky.
In his annual budget address today, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn laid the blame on the General Assembly for forcing him to cut spending on schools and other key state priorities. Quinn says the cost of pensions is "squeezing" Illinois' finances, to the point that he's calling for a $400 million hit to education.
Illinois officials say Gov. Pat Quinn has decided three state facilities helping former prison inmates transition into society will remain open, a reversal of plans to close them because of budget constraints.
Illinois Department of Corrections spokesman Stacey Solano said Monday the governor plans to keep the Fox Valley Adult Transition Center open. Kelly Kraft of Quinn's budget office also said the Peoria and Chicago's North Lawndale adult transition centers were also saved.
Brian Mackey contributed reporting from Springfield.
An Illinois state House committee has approved sweeping changes to public employee pensions.
It's one of Gov. Pat Quinn's priorities for the legislative session that ends on Thursday.
Current and retired state and university employees, and public school teachers would face a difficult choice; keep their health care in retirement and have future pay raises count toward their pensions, but a smaller cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), or keep the current 3 percent compounding COLA but lose health care.
More people are moving out of St. Louis County than moving in – and they’re taking money with them.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch cites Internal Revenue Service figures that show those who left the county between 2001 and 2010 earned on average $8,000 more than those who moved in. And about 52,000 more people left the county than moved in.