This just in… Holbrook holds up budget, and updates *** Updated x1 ***
Thursday, May 31, 2007
* Rep. Holbrook hasn’t returned my call either, and the House Dems have refused comment, but this is as good a theory as any I’ve heard… [Holbrook has now returned my call. See “Update 1″ below]
* Word is the Senate Democrats will remove all language pertaining to Chicago State University from the gaming bill and run it today. The bill will include other changes as well.
* The so-called “seven percent solution” property tax assesment cap bill will likely be called in the Senate today. It flew out of the House with over a hundred votes yesterday. The governor, however, has privately said that he might veto the bill. Stay tuned.
* Meanwhile, a proposal to levy a quarter-percent sales tax for the RTA/CTA jetted out of a House committee today with bipartisan support. The governor has indicated he will veto the bill if it ever reaches his desk.
* No word yet on when or if the Senate will call the electric utility rate freeze, but check back later.
* Also, a bill to make it easier for AT&T to enter the cable TV industry rocketed out of a House committee this morning and easy passage is expected in that chamber, and perhaps both chambers.
*** UPDATE 1 *** Rep. Tom Holbrook just called me back to answer questions about why he put the hold on the budget bill passed by the House last night. Turns out, Aaron Chambers was right again. It was about electric rate relief.
“We know there will eventually be a budget. We don’t know whether there will eventually be rate relief,” Holbrook said. Holbrook added that the Downstate Caucus voted to put the parliamentary hold on the budget yesterday and that he, as chairman, was in charge of executing the plan.
Holbrook also said that he told House Speaker Michael Madigan before the budget was debated last night that he would be placing the hold on the budget bill, adding, “We’ve told him all along that we don’t wish to vote on a budget until we’ve voted on the rate issue.”