State Sitting on $4B in Special Funds; No Budget Agreement Yet

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Springfield - For taxpayers the frustrations of Illinois continuing to run despite not having a budget may continue now that an Associated Press report shows the state has nearly $4B in 531 separate accounts, each with special and very specific purposes.

However, instead of sweeping funds to fix the budget, the governor's office, in a statement to WAND said,"Illinois needs structural reforms, like a property tax freeze, workers' comp reform, and tort reform, along with term limits and redistricting reform to grow the economy and put the state back on sound financial footing."

"The fact that we're still battling this out, the fact that leaders are refusing to meet and talk about big issues is very frustrating," added Litchfield state representative Avery Bourne.

She adds that she's hopeful the new year starts like the previous year ended, full of hope and optimism that the state can be turned around and that lawmakers from both sides of the aisle can work together to pass a budget.

"I think there's potential for compromise.  I think the unemployment insurance bill was a good showing of bipartisan effort of both sides coming together and finding a solution.  However, for every time there seems to be some progress, it seems to be a step back, so there's I'm hopeful the new year brings kind of a new, fresh slate, but also there's a lot, months and months of disagreement to get over first," said Bourne.

North Aurora state representative Keith Wheeler added,"we can make progress.  We've got a lot more to do, but we really can do it."

Lawmakers will resume budget talks at the Capitol on January 13th.

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