Senate passes current-year budget fix

SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Dave Syverson (R-Rockford) joined a bipartisan majority of lawmakers to pass legislation that will enable Governor Bruce Rauner to fill a $1.6 billion hole in the fiscal year 2015 budget.

“Today we took a tough vote to plug a massive $1.6 billion hole in the current year budget,” said State Sen. Dave Syverson (R-Rockford). “No one likes the cuts contained in the legislation, and no one wants to make cuts like this, but the simple fact is that former Governor Pat Quinn and Democrat leaders passed an unbalanced budget last year and this what we have to do to clean up that mess.”

The legislative package will enable the Governor to move money around to fill holes in the current budget, including several areas where funds had already run out, or were about to, including payments to daycares and salaries for prison guards and court reporters.

The legislation enacts across the board cuts for many agencies and government functions, and pulls some money from the state road fund. However, according to analysis from Governor Rauner’s office, no current state road projects will be cut, and cuts in school funding will be minimized by additional resources that will help replace funds for schools dependent on state aid.

Governor Rauner has repeatedly promised to increase funding for elementary and secondary education in the FY16 budget, and plans to push through a massive capital construction program for the coming year as well.

“The reality is that today was just the first of many very tough votes that will be required to fix our budget problems,” said Senator Syverson. “Our goal in the end is to put Illinois financial house back in order after 12 years of irresponsible spending by the Majority party and last 2 governors.”

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