By: Diane Benjamin
A number of people have asked me recently where the tax money is in Illinois if the bills aren’t being paid. Senator Chapin Rose took the time on Tuesday to fill me in.
First, he went over how we got in this mess. Of course, this is his opinion.
The Democrats didn’t care about not having a budget because the courts were handling spending for them. Republicans thought Gov. Rauner could work with Rahm Emanual to put pressure on Madigan, the way every other Governor had with Daley.
Both plans failed.
The courts ordered more spending than Illinois brings in! Medicaid is way up for claims that shouldn’t be paid, but without a budget nothing can stop it. Courts ordered payments for pensions and State employees. That’s why prison guards are getting paid, but the bills for electricity and water aren’t. The courts created a deficit of around $4.5 billion.
Emanuel has been neutered by the videos of police shootings and by his attempt to close almost empty Chicago schools. The unions revolted, he could never get elected to any office in Chicago now.
Senator Rose says a comprise stop-gap balanced bill is available for 6 months of spending. Another K-12 bill is available for a full year. He has no idea what will happen to either.
The Democrats want billions more to bail out the Chicago Public Schools, but the money doesn’t exist.
Meanwhile, higher education and mental health get no funding. Routine bills go unpaid.
Chapin thinks that not opening the Chicago schools is the only thing that will end Madigan’s stalemate. He said every governor in recent decades has dealt with late budgets, a problem created by Madigan. He said he has only voted for 2 budgets in 14 years. Twelve didn’t come close to balancing, the two he voted for only marginally balanced. He is happy Senate Democrats didn’t fall for Madigan’s $7 billion unbalanced budget.
That still doesn’t means Illinois is close to a solution however. July 1st all spending ends.
Mike Madigan is the problem, he needs to feel the heat of kids not in school this September and state workers not getting paid.
Even Democrats in the House know Madigan is the problem. They could revolt and kick him out as Speaker.
(just kidding, they don’t have the guts)