WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Rauner Announces Closures And Budget Cuts

Jun 3, 2015
Originally published on June 3, 2015 11:38 am

Illinois leaders have another month to settle on a new budget plan, but given their failure to reach a deal by Sunday's initial deadline, Gov. Bruce Rauner says he must take immediate steps to manage state spending.

Illinois will begin closing down a prison work camp in downstate Hardin, and laying off its 60 employees. A pair of youth prisons may also close. The Illiniana Expressway won't go forward.

Gov. Rauner is also suspending state funding of a program helps low-income people keep their air conditioner on in hot summer months, and their heat on when temperatures drop. He'll make it tougher for elderly people to get support for home care. The state museum in Springfield, as well as the Dickson Mounds site, will be closed to visitors.

It's not that there is no budget; the Democratic-controlled legislature passed one. But Rauner, a Republican, has threatened to veto it.

"I cannot sign a fake budget, a phony budget, an out-of-balance budget," Rauner said.

While Rauner says it's time for the Democratic leaders to come to the table to work out a resolution, their offices say Rauner has scheduled no meetings.

A spokeswoman for the Senate President says Rauner's actions show he'd rather slash services than work on a bipartisan solution.

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