Illinois now only state without a budget for this fiscal year

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SPRINGFIELD – Illinois is now the only state without a budget for the fiscal year that began July 1. 2015.

Illinois received the dubious distinction after Pennsylvania came to a $30 billion budget agreement this week.

Republican Governor Bruce Rauner expressed frustration at the lack of progress, saying his efforts to arrange a one-on-one meeting with Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan have gone nowhere.

Rauner accused Madigan and his colleagues of playing games by stalling budget talks to force a tax hike.
Madigan spokesperson Steve Brown blames Rauner, saying it was the governor who vetoed the spending plan lawmakers sent him last year.

The impasse has already forced cuts in social services and education and nearly $6.5 billion in unpaid bills.

Meantime, a suburban Chicago community college has told 19 full-time and 10 part-time employees they’ll no longer have jobs June 30.

The college says it is owed $8 million in state aid. Illinois’ public universities and colleges have not received state funding since last summer due to the budget stalemate.

State Comptroller Leslie Munger estimates the backlog could reach $10 billion by the time the current fiscal year ends in July.

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