* Apparently, the House and Senate Republicans are not operating out of the same budgetary playbook…
Illinois senators voted along party lines Thursday to adopt a revenue estimate for next year that is about $1 billion less than was used to create the current state budget. […]
The new revenue estimate is lower in large part because much of the temporary income tax increase is set to expire at the end of 2014, midway through the next budget year. At the same time, budget negotiators must cope with increased costs that cannot be avoided, such as for pensions, health insurance for both retirees and active workers and Medicaid. Between the higher costs and less revenue, budget negotiators are looking at a $2.3 billion hole they will have to fill in the next budget.
Senate Republicans all voted against the revenue estimate. Some accused Democrats of hiding revenue to make the budget numbers look worse than they are. They said it was part of an attempt by Democrats to build support for continuing the income tax hike. […]
The same resolution passed the Illinois House on a 112-0 vote. Some House Republicans noted that the figures were based on estimates from the legislature’s Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability, which has provided reliable estimates in the past. Republicans said they were also encouraged that Gov. Pat Quinn’s budget office had estimates very similar to COGFA’s.