Proposed Legislation could deny Lawmakers their paychecks

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SPRINGFIELD – State Representative Avery Bourne (R-Raymond) is co-sponsoring legislation that would deny lawmakers their paychecks if there is no balanced budget.

Bourne says the need for “common sense legislation like this” is stronger than ever with the State being in its ninth month without a budget. She says no one is being held accountable for this lack of a plan.

“For years, our constituents have watched helplessly as the legislature passed unbalanced budget after unbalanced budget. It’s about time that the legislature put forth the necessary effort to give us something that is truly balanced or not get paid,” Bourne explains.

The bill demands that within 30 days of the enactment of a budget, the Auditor General’s Office must certify that the budget will be balanced with expenses not exceeding expected revenue.

If the Auditor General declares the budget is not balanced then the Comptroller will:

  • Stop payment for the salary of the General Assembly members and Constitutional Officers; and
  • Within 10 days of the Auditor General’s certification that the budget is not balanced; the General Assembly must convene to enact a new state budget

This announcement of support for the bill by Representative Bourne comes after a report by the Comptroller’s Office that over the last six years, the money paid by the State of Illinois in late fees has topped $900 million.

According to Comptroller Leslie Munger, Illinois is on course to develop a backlog of unpaid bills and invoices that could top $10 billion before the end of the current, budget-less fiscal year.

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