State Employee Checks On The Line

Decatur – As the state fails to reach agreement on a budget compromise by July 1st efforts are underway to figure out a way to keep paying state workers.

State Representative Bill Mitchell, (R) Forsyth, told WAND State Capitol reporter Doug Wolfe Monday he is filing an amendment to the state budget act to continue paying state and university workers.  The first check workers will be receiving in the new budget year is scheduled for July 15th.

“The state employees and the university employees they're doing the work, they should get paid,” Mitchell said at his office in Forsyth.  “They shouldn't be penalized because the General Assembly is not doing its job."

AFSCME is telling its members to report to work Wednesday.  But the union says it is prepared to take legal action to make sure checks are delivered on time.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan says Gov. Bruce Rauner's plan to keep paying state employees even without a budget agreement could hit a legal snag.

The Republican governor sent a memo to employees Monday in an attempt to reassure them that they will get their paychecks as scheduled and should continue punching in on Wednesday. That's the beginning of a new fiscal year and there's no spending plan in place.

 Rauner says his action is based on "precedent."

Madigan -- a Democrat -- released a statement Monday afternoon saying a 1991 appellate court ruling decreed there can be no paychecks without a budget. She says a union lawsuit in 2007 during a budget impasse allowed the state comptroller to make payroll under very limited circumstances.

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