Lawmakers Deal With Budget Crisis By Heading Home


State Capitol – It is day two of the state budget crisis but lawmakers could not be found at the Capitol.  Despite state worker paychecks and vital services being threatened by a lack of money lawmakers went home for the July 4th holiday.

Kristina Rasmussen of the Illinois Policy Institute told WAND Capitol reporter Doug Wolfe it has been years since Illinois has had a real balanced budget.

“Illinois has not had a balanced budget since 2001,” Rasmussen stated.  “More than a decade.  And we’ve been paying through the nose through their bad spending habits and you have seen the debt racked up.”

The battle over the budget has come down to two people.  House Speaker Mike Madigan and Governor Bruce Rauner.  Rauner rejected a budget plan sent to him by the legislature that was nearly $4 billion in the red.  Madigan has been seeking an increase in revenues through new taxes to help pay for the states vital services.

Rasmussen says it is time for the Governor to hold out for a balanced budget.

“Some needs to say the buck stops here,” she said.  “He was elected on a platform saying I’m going to respect taxpayers and stop the madness.”

A deal on a compromise budget is not likely anytime soon as lawmakers spend the long weekend in their home districts.

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