Springfield - Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has signed a $2.7 billion package of cuts and taxes designed to fix the state's broken Medicaid system.
Quinn signed a total of five bills, including one that will increase cigarette taxes by $1.01 per pack. The tax money will be used to fund the Medicaid program.
"If we didn't act the system would have collapsed," Quinn told WAND News this afternoon at the Executive Mansion. "We had to make some tough decisions that are necessary to protect our state from having a collapse of its entire Medicaid system."
Cuts to Medicaid programs hit the disabled and senior citizens especially hard. Consumer group Citizen Action/Illinois says the cuts could cause "real harm." They suggested Quinn could have closed corporate loopholes, "so that everyone would pay their fair share."
Quinn praised state lawmakers for passing the Medicaid reform legislation saying they "worked together in a bipartisan manner to tackle a grave crisis."