Michael Madigan

Rich Egger

As Illinois' budget stalemate continues, the state's top political leaders have been focusing on a relatively small number: $250,000. That's roughly how much Illinois is set to spend this year on pay raises for legislators.

Amanda Vinicky

There's no clear path forward on a long-term budget solution for Illinois, and temporary solutions are murky too.

A Cook County judge has ruled Illinois may not continue to pay state workers in full during an ongoing budget impasse. Now the state comptroller says she will appeal the decision.

Judge Diane Joan Larsen ruled Tuesday that Illinois Comptroller Leslie Munger may pay only some workers who are covered under a federal law.  The U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act requires essential workers to be paid the federal minimum wage plus overtime in the absence of an annual appropriation.

 

Western Illinois University is reducing certain employees' 12-month contracts to 10 or 11-months, some temporary employees won't be returning this fall, and a few other staff members have been let go. The changes went into effect Wednesday, July 1.

Illinois is officially without a state budget -- the deadline to pass one came and went any movement toward a compromise. Lawmakers are poised to vote on a temporary version Wednesday.

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has vetoed the bulk of a proposed new state budget. Only funding for schools is safe.

Rauner says he had to do it because the plan approved by Democrats is out of balance and, thus, unconstitutional.

But that means Illinois in will have almost no spending authority when the new fiscal year begins next Wednesday, July 1.

Rachel Otwell

Just a few of the budget bills Democrats passed have made it to Governor Bruce Rauner's desk --- where he has the ability to sign them into law, reject them entirely, or cut down the levels of spending.

Brian Mackey / WUIS/Illinois Issues

Additional state services are getting caught in the fight between Republican Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner and Democratic legislators.  The governor announced he's preparing to suspend funding for dozens of programs because there is still no agreement on a new state budget. 

Illinois' legislative session was supposed to be over by now. The schedule published months ago marked Sunday, May 31st as the adjournment date. Legislators typically don't return to Springfield until the fall. Instead, members of the General Assembly will be back beginning Thursday for a "continuous" summer session.

Illinois Democrats have begun to unveil their new state spending plan, which looks a lot like the current one. That's despite Illinois having billions of dollars less, thanks to a rollback of the income tax rate in January. Even before the details were made public, Gov. Bruce Rauner's office was out with a statement tearing into the proposal, and its architect, House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Illinois' budget, and Gov. Bruce Rauner's influence on it, will be examined by a special legislative committee. The powerful House Speaker announced its creation today.

It's either a sign of a contentious budget battle, or an early attempt at reaching a compromise.

No Vote On Illinois Term Limits

Jun 27, 2014
Brian Turner / Flickr Creative Commons

Cook County Circuit Court Judge Mary Mikva has ruled the question is unconstitutional for voters to take up.

  Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) says he's come to an agreement on state spending with the speaker of the Illinois House. But Cullerton is leaving the door open for an income tax hike after the November election.

Gov. Pat Quinn appealed directly to Democrats in the Illinois House Monday evening. He’s struggling to win support for his plan to extend Illinois’ higher income tax rate.

The governor appeared at a closed meeting of the Illinois House Democratic caucus.

Quinn is trying to win the support of the 60 Democrats required to make Illinois’ 5 percent income-tax rate permanent — instead of letting it decline by more than a percentage point as scheduled at the end of the year. Quinn warns without the higher tax rate, there will have to be drastic cuts in state services.

  A legislative committee Wednesday voted to authorize spending $100 million to lure Barack Obama's presidential library to Chicago ... for the second time.

Before he became President, Barack Obama served as an Illinois state senator and a U.S. senator. He worked as a community organizer in Chicago, and taught at the University of Chicago law school.

All reasons he might locate his presidential library and museum in Illinois.

But New York and Hawaii are also in the running.

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