Illinois' unprecedented budget impasse has ended … for now, and just in the nick of time. The governor signed, and legislators passed, a partial budget Thursday, on the final day of fiscal year 2016. But it's only a temporary salve.
Illinois lawmakers are expected to vote on a short-term budget on Wednesday, when they'll be back in Springfield for the first time in a month. There's no budget plan in place for the new fiscal year that starts Friday, which could create even more disarray after a year-long stalemate.
Though political fighting at the statehouse and the lack of a complete budget meant it was haphazard, municipalities got much of their state funding this year. But Illinois is set to begin a new fiscal year Friday with no spending plan in place. That has local officials worried.
Mahomet Village President Sean Widener says it's a matter of stability.
Illinois' budget crisis will continue, unabated. The regular, spring session came to an end Tuesday night, without any resolution to the stalemate that has the state entering its twelfth month without a complete spending plan. There's no plan for next year, either.
Lawmakers only have two days to pass a budget before a pending deadline. But even as top leaders came out of a meeting Sunday, saying that a deal is possible, it was clear the chances are woefully slim.
Gov. Bruce Rauner has danced around it before. But this time, he didn't flinch.
Rauner says if it gets to his desk, he will reject in its entirety the only spending plan currently alive in the statehouse: a plan House Democrats approved last week.
Despite recent hype over the possibility of legislators putting questions on the November ballot to change the constitution, the Illinois House adjourned Wednesday without even voting on proposed amendments. Their lack of action means voters won't be asked whether they want to change how they're taxed.
As the state budget impasse has entered an eleventh month, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner said he's hopeful a "grand bargain" can be worked out by the end of May. But he's leaving the bargaining to others.
Gov. Bruce Rauner says he isn't a billionaire, but he's not far off. Me? I'm Amanda Vinicky, statehouse bureau chief for Illinois Public Radio, and let's just say I've got a better chance of walking on the moon than ever making a billion bucks.
But both Rauner and I -- as does everyone else who lives in Illinois, no matter how rich or poor -- pay the same state income tax rate. The constitution requires a flat tax.
Some Illinois Democrats are moving to change that.
Gov. Bruce Rauner has created a task force charged with finding fraud in taxpayer-funded health care programs.
The Republican Tuesday used his executive authority to form the group. It'll seek ways to prevent waste in state- and federally funded Medicaid , the state employee's health insurance and even costs of caring for inmates in Illinois prisons. Rauner says the cost of state-run health care programs increases when no one watches to stop abuse and fraud.
Illinois lawmakers are moving to make it easier for transgender individuals to change the gender marker on a fundamental document: their birth certificates. Democrats on a House committee approved the legislation Tuesday on a partisan vote of 8 to 6.
Alexandria Dinardo, who was born and raised in Springfield, was born male; that's what Dinardo's birth certificate still says.
Some of the primary races in early March were the most expensive in state history, but it will remain a mystery where all of the money to fund them came from. That does not appear to concern Gov.Bruce Rauner.
Unions landed a victory Tuesday: A tie at the U-S Supreme Court on a case perceived as do-or-die for public employee unions means current rules will remain in place. But Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner says he'll continue to try to ban so-called "fair share" fees.