* Press release…
Illinois is among the eight worst states in the country in long-term budget planning, according to a major new report from the Washington, DC-based Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Illinois, a state with chronic budget problems, should adopt a set of proven fiscal planning tools that that could help it weather difficult economic times, build an attractive business climate, and make government more effective and efficient, the report finds.
The report examines whether and how well states use ten key fiscal planning tools that fall into three broad categories:
A map for the future: the budget and accompanying documents should include a detailed roadmap of the budget’s immediate and future impacts on the state’s fiscal health.
Professional and credible estimates: standards and sufficient oversight are needed to guarantee that these analyses of the budget’s impacts are professional, credible, and prepared without political influence.
Ways to stay on course: mechanisms should be in place to trigger any needed changes during the budget year, before too much damage is done.
Fiscal planning tools not used at all in Illinois include independent consensus revenue estimates for the coming fiscal year, current services baseline budgets, five-year revenue and spending projections, and a well-designed rainy day fund.
The study is here.
…Adding… The governor’s office points out that Gov. Quinn will be doing some long-term planning when he rolls out his five-year budget blueprint in March. Good point.
Also, the governor’s office clarified something last night via text and I didn’t see it until just a few minutes ago. The budget address has been delayed 8 times since Gov. Jim Edgar’s administration, not 13 as claimed yesterday.