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Governor Quinn’s full “slash and burn” explanation

Monday, May 18, 2009

* OK, let’s start a fresh “doomsday budget” thread, shall we? That other one was getting too long. This is the full explanation from the governor’s office. Have at it…

“Slash and Burn” Budget Consequences

Balancing the fiscal year 2010 budget by using only a “slash and burn” approach will take a significant toll on the people of Illinois. In this grim budget scenario, Illinois meets requirements to tap American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding and provides limited state money necessary to attract other federal matching funds.

What follows are some of the dire consequences should this scorched-earth, cuts-only, approach be used to close the deficit:

Education – $1.5 billion cut – Over 14,300 teachers laid off
• Cut school aid by $568 million, causing more than 9,300 teachers to lose their jobs.
• Eliminate preschool for 100,000 children, causing more than 5,000 teachers to lose their jobs.

Higher Education – $554 million cut – Over 400,000 students affected
• Eliminate all state scholarships, including MAP grants, making college less affordable for 400,000 students.

Healthcare – $1.2 billion cut – Over 650,000 people lose healthcare
• Eliminate healthcare for 300,000 children and 175,000 parents, and Rx assistance for 172,000 seniors.
• Eliminate all healthcare subsidies for 78,000 retired teachers, university and state employees.

Seniors – $368 million cut – Over 271,000 seniors affected
• Cut Community Care program in half - 26,000 seniors would not receive services to help remain in their homes.
• Eliminate Elder Abuse and Neglect program - 11,000 cases would not be investigated.
• Eliminate Circuit Breaker program, cutting property tax relief for 271,000 seniors.

Veterans – $27 million cut – Over 150,000 veterans affected and 1,000 kicked out of veterans’ homes
• Close all four Illinois veterans’ homes, leaving over 1,000 veterans without critical care.
• Eliminate Traumatic Brain Injury & Post Traumatic Stress Disorder counseling and assistance program.

Public Safety – $294 million cut – Nearly 1,000 State Troopers laid off and 6,000 inmates released early
• Lay off nearly 1,000 State Troopers -50 percent of the force - and eliminate the 2010 class of 100 cadets.
• Release over 6,000 inmates early and close the Sheridan and Southwestern Drug Treatment facilities.
• Close four Department of Juvenile Justice facilities and release over 500 juveniles early.

Human Services – $769 million cut – Over 100,000 people affected
• Eliminate home services for 5,000 people with disabilities.
• Eliminate addiction treatment and prevention for 45,000 people.
• Close one out of every five Illinois Department of Human Services offices.
• Eliminate child care for 1,000 kids and increase co-pays for remaining children.

Economic Development – $549 million cut – Every mass transit district affected
• Eliminate all state funding for public transit and AMTRAK.

Agriculture and Natural Resources – $98 million cut – 60 parks and every museum closed
• Shut down half of the state parks and lay off one-third of frontline park staff, and close state museums.
• Eliminate state funding for Springfield and Du Quoin state fairs, 4-H and county fairs.

Local Government – $1 billion cut
• Eliminate state funding for local governments, reducing their ability to fund core services like law enforcement, fire service and garbage collection and offices like public defenders, county treasurers and state’s attorneys.

Additional– $1.1 billion cut
• Require additional deep reductions in agency services, eliminate support for numerous specialized programs and eliminate dozens of state boards, offices, commissions and agencies.

————————

• The two-year deficit from fiscal years 2009 and 2010 is $11.6 billion.
• Of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds that Illinois is receiving, $4.1 billion can be applied towards closing the $11.6 billion deficit.
• In this “Slash and Burn” budget scenario, the remaining deficit is closed with $7.5 billion in cuts that hurt the citizens of Illinois and further damage the economy.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

116 Comments
  1. - ILPundit - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:28 pm:

    Better late than never, I suppose.

    Imagine how much more productive the budget discussion would have been this Spring if this had been the starting point, rather than a 4th quarter desperation play to get votes for the revenue.


  2. - Downstater - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:42 pm:

    I understand the politics of this draconian budget approach, but really why make these silly statements. A different approach- Health care- Have those getting the care to pay a small portion of the cost. Lower the threshold for income qualifications. It may not solve the problem, but for goodness sakes it makes more sense, than actly like the state will grind to a halt.


  3. - Anonymous45 - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:45 pm:

    IL Pundit: It wouldn’t have made a difference…the tax increase is coming and be sure to thank folks like Blago, Emil, Mike Madigan, Rickey Hendon, Donne Trotter, and most of the members of the House…


  4. - Ghost - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:45 pm:

    Interestingly many who are against the tax increase claim that the extra 1.5% from their salaries will doom them, and a few imply the extra cost will leave them penniless. They go on to say that by leaving the money with them this will stimulate the economy.

    But when you cut the roughly 25000 workers who will be laid off to pay for this you will be pulling a lot of money out of the local economy. Many of those opposed to the tax increase may find themselves beocming unemployed from the huge economic donwturn cause bu such a huge layoff.

    Setting aside the layoff, the majority of the tax increase goes back into the economy. The services, salaries etc are contribute to the economy. This small increase puts billions and billions back into play in the economy. So the tax increase will actualte help the ecnomy, stimulate reveunes, and create buisness opportunity instead of killing it.

    these costs do more to push businmess out of the state and damage the economy. The tax does the reverse, builds infrastructure and provides more money in the economy to attract buisness.

    Raise taxes In IL, its good for the economy and business


  5. - Easy - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:45 pm:

    thank goodness. way too many troopers on I-55 anyway.


  6. - Rich Miller - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:49 pm:

    Ghost, I think an economic case can be made that with consumers (both human and commercial) refusing to spend, a small tax hike would force money into the economy. Then again, there are all those business struggling out there who have no extra money to pay the corporate tax hike. Small businesses often pay both individual and corporate, which hits them with a double whammy. That ain’t a good thing.


  7. - dave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:51 pm:

    But when you cut the roughly 25000 workers who will be laid off to pay for this

    25,000 layoffs may be low. The home care cuts to seniors and people with disabilities alone could cut 15,000 workers.


  8. - Just a Citizen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:53 pm:

    Just looked at Melissa Hahn’s link on Twitter that lists state employees’ salaries. I couldn’t believe the huge amount of highly paid state employees in my small, rural county. Some of these positions should be ripe for cutting.


  9. - steve schnorf - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:53 pm:

    I dare anyone to do a better job than Quinn just did of cutting that much money from the proposed budget.


  10. - 2ConfusedCrew - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:54 pm:

    Speaking of DoomsDay…..Lawyer: Patti will do reality show…..A lawyer who represents Rod Blagojevich and is close to the Blagojevich family just told me that it’s looking like Patti Blagojevich will appear as a contestant on the reality TV show “I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!”
    Sheldon Sorosky said the former Illinois first lady is expected to fly out to Los Angeles this week to sign a contract to do the show her husband was barred from doing because it’s being filmed out of the country……Can you imagine that bow-wow on the tube?


  11. - Rich Miller - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:55 pm:

    ===Health care- Have those getting the care to pay a small portion of the cost. ===

    If all those 650,000 people paid almost $2,000 each, you’d get to the $1.2 billion. That’s quite a lot. Especially considering that many families have more than one recipient.


  12. - Anon - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 2:57 pm:

    from the earlier thread:

    ==I was on unemployment briefly in the mid 1980s, and I paid income tax on my unemployment checks. ==

    Under the federal stimulus legislation passed earlier this year, the first $2400 of unemployment is exempt from federal tax, which makes it exempt from Illinois tax unless legislation is passed to specifically tax it. This is for 2009 only, however.


  13. - Ghost - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:01 pm:

    === Small businesses often pay both individual and corporate, which hits them with a double whammy. That ain’t a good thing. ===

    Which to me sets a point for discussing solutions to provide insulation or apporpriate decusitons to minimize such effects; but overall I would argue that small business has the greatest need for the tax increase as it will take the hardest hit without the infusion of cash the increase will bring.


  14. - Cheswick - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:01 pm:

    Is it safe to say that some of these cuts on the state level will be overturned (I don’t know the right word) by tax increases on the local level? Like teachers being laid off. If the local school board needs to keep the teachers on, then the local school board will increase its tax rate to property owners? Just an example. But if so, a budget cut instead of an income tax increase could equate to a property tax increase. Just thinking out loud. Is this right or wrong?


  15. - Captain Flume - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:03 pm:

    This announcement merely puts examples of what a $12 billion cut would look like. Most here already knew some of these examples or could have speculated on them with reason. It was no different last week, nor will it different next week. The dilemma for the Democrats is how to take this type of budget to the voters and be blamed for the shortfall in state-provided services, or how to take a tax increase to the voters without taking the “member initiatives” along, too. Does the Dem caucus endorse this budget? Does the Speaker? I’m wondering what the Speaker’s chess board looks like now and it will look like next week.


  16. - Greg B. - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:03 pm:

    I agree with Steve Schnorf. This is a great jumping off point for an adult discussion on right sizing state government and discussing what we believe priorities should be.

    Would we be better off with state parks charging admissions and demanding they be self sufficient? Sanganois has had to live like that for years and by gosh the mallard loving enthusiasts keep it open and it is one of the premier spots for migratory birds in the country!

    Do local budgets need to be subsidized by the state taxpayer? Yes, local taxes might go up. But under the current system both could very well end up going up. How’s that for a better deal for taxpayers?

    Do economic development programs work? A lot economists say no. A lot of states argue they do it to keep up with the Jones’ next door.

    Higher education could use a hair cut. A little market discipline could do them a lot of good. Steve Rauschenberger is big champion of looking under the hood of this area of the budget.

    Instead of extortion, this could have been put to good use.


  17. - Shore - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:04 pm:

    Just asking, but how many of these state workers that get laid off would we really miss? Having worked for a federal government agency I know there’s A LOT of waste to cut and efficienies that could be made without hurting the taxpayer.

    Teachers unions getting whacked doesn’t sadden me either. At my high school lots of the best teachers have quit at the tender age of 55 in the last decade so that we could get lackluster younger teachers at less cost and pay these older folks to sit and do nothing for 30 years when now more than ever their skills are needed to prepare kids to compete for 21st century jobs.

    the 9,300 teacher number is inflated, that really amounts to probably 7-10 teachers at each high school in the state. do we need a $70k a year librarian and 5 hall monitors instead of 3, no.

    It also doesn’t sadden me that state government is finally having to make tough choices. 4-H, that is what exactly? Springfield should pay for its own fair. Has anyone in one of the 6 collar counties ever been to a state park? Those state scholarships handed out by state reps are a waste and as far as patronage jobs go it’s worth noting the country of Great Britain has only 200 patronage jobs in its entire government.


  18. - 47th Ward - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:10 pm:

    Thanks Shore,

    Be sure to send your talking points on to Rep. Kirk. That is precisely the kind of message he should run on statewide.

    Good luck with that.


  19. - He Makes Ryan Look Like a Saint - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:12 pm:

    Steve is right about the cuts Quinn just showed. It took guts, something Illinois has not seen in a long time.

    As far as people saying go ahead it won’t really bother them. Maybe the initial cuts won’t bother them, but the trickle down will affect EVERYONE in the state, in one way or another.


  20. - dave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:14 pm:

    Do economic development programs work? A lot economists say no.

    And a lot of economists say yes.

    Just asking, but how many of these state workers that get laid off would we really miss?

    First, yes, the State will miss many of the State workers. Illinois already has the lowest number of state workers per capita in the country. Further, many, many departments are incredibly understaffed as it is.

    Second… this isn’t just cutting state workers. It is cutting thousands of front-line workers - teachers, home health care workers, etc.

    Teachers unions getting whacked doesn’t sadden me either.

    Really? You want to see thousands of teachers get laid off? It isn’t the union that is going to suffer… it is the students. One of the best predictors of student success is class size. Laying off thousands of teachers will mean larger class sizes, and overburdened teachers, and less successful students.

    And cutting pre-school? Research has shown that investing in early education gives you an 8 to 1 return on your investment.

    Cutting home care? Home care saves the state millions by keeping seniors and people with disabilities out of nursing homes.

    These cuts are not just devastating now. They will also end up costing the state hundreds of millions, if not billions, more down the road.


  21. - Anonymous - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:14 pm:

    Go for it!


  22. - Anon - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:21 pm:

    === Small businesses often pay both individual and corporate, which hits them with a double whammy. That ain’t a good thing. ===

    Any small business that is paying both corporate and individual deserves to get “whammied.” That’s what partnerships, S corporations and LLCs are for.


  23. - ispretired - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:22 pm:

    Hey if Quinn just gives it 3 years you will see 500 troopers retire anyway. From 82 to 86 about 600 were put on , most of them have retired(including me) and others will soon. Hey maybe a few less seatbelt details and more troopers working real traffic safety on the state roads.


  24. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:26 pm:

    Shore…

    Large stretches of expressways without troopers, what the heck, no one speeds or drives recklessly. No problem.

    No one to prevent deer wasting disease from making it into Illinois (can’t monitor deer that are taken by hunters and no more DNR guys pulling double duty as snipers taking deer out). Yeah a deer population boom, that will not kill anyone at all…

    Snowplows on highways, who needs them outside the big city. If you drive over a road enough the snow gets packed down anyway.

    Teachers and manageable classroom sizes for poor kids, heck it’s their fault for being poor, screw em.

    Grandma got old and needs home health care, sucks to get old dude.

    We already have the lowest ratio of state workers to people in this state (we did that under Ryan)


  25. - 2ConfusedCrew - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:27 pm:

    capt fax meant to say duquoin fair canceled


  26. - Shore - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:28 pm:

    I am not affiliated with the Kirk operation, just a fan although I have major issues with the failure of he and his pal McKenna to do anything to rebound the state party. In my mind he spends too much time on human rights activists in bangladesh and too little time advancing the state party. For me he’s like whoever the top state gop elected officials are these days (I see tupac more than them on tv in chicago) in Illinois: too invisible when it counts and too afraid to get mad as hell. His followers sure are.

    As for the state workers and Springfield, to an outside observer the past 7 years look like this:the promise of reform FAILED, a bunch of political heirs in the news more for tyring to figure out the next way up the political ladder they’ve been groomed for their entire lives rather than do anything for the people that give them their power, nonstop debate and failure to act on reform, and 1.5 years spent partying for Obama.

    The teachers thing is ridiculous. I had gym teachers that made $100,000. Seems ridiculous that if business has to tighten its belt, the state should have to ask if we really need every last patronage hack, what programs haven’t worked, and where government can get more efficient.

    This corruption thing makes me sick. People are struggling right now and democrat state legislators that promised reform 7 years ago are diddling their thumbs on their own ethics.


  27. - Greg - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:30 pm:

    “the majority of the tax increase goes back into the economy. The services, salaries etc are contribute to the economy. This small increase puts billions and billions back into play in the economy. So the tax increase will actualte help the ecnomy, stimulate reveunes, and create buisness opportunity instead of killing it.”

    I don’t know where to start. But I think you may have pushed your supply and demand curves in the wrong direction; that big old triangle is loss, not magic gain. Govt spending can stimulate the economy (obviously at the expense of higher future debt payments) but that’s entirely separate from what’s facing Illinois.

    If we think a tax increase is necessary for social/moral/stability/etc reasons, fine–it may well be–but don’t add tortured economic logic.


  28. - Concerned Observer - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:30 pm:

    I’d just like to agree with ILPundit and Schnorf on two separate issues. I do wish this had been the jumping-off point. Perhaps it still could be. And I think it’s an incredibly clear job by Quinn’s team of what would happen in the “scorched earth” scenario and a better job than I, or most others, could do at laying that out.

    All I can say otherwise is that I’d rather pay taxes than lose most of this. The word “Compromise” had better come into play at the Capitol.


  29. - Mr. Wizard - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:34 pm:

    Consumer spending drives 2/3 of the economy. State spending drives your taxes up and stops you, as a consumer, from spending. No case to be made that a tax increase helps the economy.


  30. - dave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:39 pm:

    No case to be made that a tax increase helps the economy.

    You are sure about that?

    http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=1032


  31. - Legaleagle - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:41 pm:

    So state government needs to be downsized. We can’t keep subsidizing everything. But cuts should be targeted and need not be across-the-board. A great many of us just don’t trust those in charge with more of our money. State government has grown much too big over the last 6 years. No new taxes! Do what you can with what we already give you - prioritize!


  32. - techboy - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:43 pm:

    Man, the ugliness sure does come out when the draconian cuts are brought up. But Quinn spoke about all this weeks ago, maybe months ago; none of this doomsday list is a surprise. It serves as a clear example of how ridiculous are the arguments by the “we can cut our way out without a tax increase” people. There is not a legislator alive that would put their name on that budget, to do so would be political suicide. A MODEST tax hike has always been what was needed, it is six years overdue. Let’s please stop the kabuki theater and GET ON WITH IT.


  33. - dave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:44 pm:

    Legaleagle … so what would you cut?


  34. - VanillaMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:44 pm:

    After watching a General Assembly kick every decision down the road and refuse to make any decision with an iota of risk, there is no reason to believe that this “doomsday” will be any more different that the earlier ones ignored by the power players in Illinois politics. If a tax increase occurs, you can kiss any opportunities to really reform how Illinois operates, goodbye.

    We are in this crisis for a reason. One of many is the unwillingness to lead, debate, or to allow bipartisan consideration over the slow-motion train wreck that is the Illinois state budget. Since 1999, we have known this day was coming. The people in charge did nothing to avoid it. The harshness of the situation we are in is due to a political corruption resulting in negligence.

    The “best and brightest” are sitting in office under the capital dome in Springfield. It is high time they do their jobs beyond padding their fiefdoms and advancing their family’s careers and fortunes.

    No more money until we start seeing some results!


  35. - Rob_N - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:46 pm:

    Shore asks, “Has anyone in one of the 6 collar counties ever been to a state park?”

    Yes, several. Museums around the state too.

    Spent money on the way there, while there and then again on the way back.

    If they’d been closed… that money probably would’ve stayed in the bank or been spent locally instead.

    Shore continues, “At my high school lots of the best teachers have quit at the tender age of 55 […] so that we could get lackluster younger teachers at less cost and pay these older folks to sit and do nothing for 30 years when now more than ever their skills are needed to prepare kids to compete for 21st century jobs.”

    …Which do you want, cuts in spending or the best qualified, most experienced (and highest paid) workers?

    It’s an either/or question.

    Shore also claims, “as far as patronage jobs go it’s worth noting the country of Great Britain has only 200 patronage jobs in its entire government.”

    If you believe that, I’ve got some bridges in Brooklyn and London I’d like to sell you.

    They may not be called “patronage” jobs in print, but you can bet your greenback they’re there.

    To wit, the Bush Administration converted hundreds (if not thousands) of essentially non-partisan civil service jobs into patronage jobs by asking lithmus type questions of government job applications from literally the level of park rangers on up.

    And it’s not like Britain doesn’t waste taxpayer money (big time) either.


  36. - BIG R.PH. - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:48 pm:

    Sounds Great!! Let’s try it.

    You can’t just keep soaking the “Rich”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124260067214828295.html

    We do not live in an isolated world. We need to be competitive with not only neighboring states but other states and other countries.

    The only way out of this mess is to grow the economy of Illinois and quit “giving away the farm”.


  37. - Rob_N - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:50 pm:

    Legaleagle, this “doomsday” budget is prioritized.

    It balances everything out - no tax increase.

    As someone else asked, what would you cut instead?

    This is a starting point. Since most of the state’s budget goes to Education and Local Government anyway, it’s only natural that this is where large chunks of the cuts are going to come from. But, even then these cuts are spread out.


  38. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:52 pm:

    I guess the capital bill is sacrosanct, even with a doomsday scenario.


  39. - Karen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:54 pm:

    Reinvest in local law enforcement. ISP is a waste and should be drastically cut. ISP should strictly be an enforcer of laws within the executive branch and available for local conflicts.

    Also, lessening of big brother practices with “safety checks” would be a good thing.


  40. - Rob_N - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:54 pm:

    PPS - One more point on the proposed cuts to Local Governments…

    Rich said in the earlier post, “…Adding… By zeroing out local governments, slashing school aid and mass transit subsidies, you can guarantee local tax hikes.”

    …Keep in mind that not every locale has home rule to just willy-nilly raise property taxes, etc.

    Look for a lot of usage fees to increase too.


  41. - Cosmic Charlie - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 3:59 pm:

    Lets assume this budget is accurate, which I think it largely is. I still do not understand why the Governor is steadfastly opposed to a temporary tax hike. If we need to raise taxes to weather this storm then fine. But once the storm has passed lets roll it back. Same with fee increases and other revenue enhancers (other than those needed for a Cap Bill). If we need more right now, ok, pair it up with a budget caps and other spending controls so that at the end of the crisis we do not end up with an even more bloated and more dysfucntional budget.


  42. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:00 pm:

    ==Reinvest in local law enforcement. ISP is a waste and should be drastically cut. ISP should strictly be an enforcer of laws within the executive branch and available for local conflicts.==

    Karen, reinvest with what? If you use the money you save from eliminating a big chunk of the state police to do the reinvesting then you don’t save any money.

    Also who watches the highways? Cities (a lot of millage of expressways in this state are not in incorporated areas, counties?

    Who do you call when you need to deal with a Drew Peterson (strong ties to local law enforcement), does will county cut a deal with Sagamon county to deal with that sort of thing…


  43. - Merit Comp Slave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:01 pm:

    Karen you need to stay away from the Kool-aid. That’s just beyond ridiculous.


  44. - wordslinger - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:08 pm:

    Hello!

    Now you might get some people’s attention!

    But you better beat that drum loudly — everyone’s in the middle of graduations and Memorial Day Weekend.

    Bang, bang, bang…..


  45. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:09 pm:

    The Devil is in the details:

    Quinn and Democrats should IMPLEMENT the cuts to K-12 education by eliminating the aid formula hold harmless and special education line items.

    Let suburban Republicans explain that vote.


  46. - Third Generation Chicago Native - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:12 pm:

    This is all to scare all the legislators into coming up with some cuts they can really make.


  47. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:14 pm:

    Prediction

    If Republicans think this is a “gimmick” or a “scare tactic”, I’ve got news for them.

    Madigan asked Quinn to draft this budget.

    When was the last time you saw Madigan bluff? Have you EVER seen Madigan bluff? I haven’t.

    Madigan, Cullerton and Democrats WILL help Republicans pass this budget, or they’ll allow Republicans to kill it.

    Either way, Republicans will end up being blamed for draconian cuts or forcing a tax increase.


  48. - Vote Quimby! - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:14 pm:

    ==State government has grown much too big over the last 6 years==
    Legaleagle, the facts don’t bear you out on that one.
    ==I had gym teachers that made $100,000.==
    Shore, try finding one south of I-80 that makes 2/3 of that…and likely they have a teaching load to go with it.


  49. - The Fox - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:26 pm:

    What about all those louts at various state universities? Whoever said that professors, adminstrators, coaches, marketing people are immune from economic downturns? Take it out on kids and parents. What about layoffs, salary cuts, a cut in all those other perks for professors etc.who hardly put in a days work fro a day’s pay.


  50. - Ghost - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:31 pm:

    greg, do you have an explanation of why this is tortured logic, that putting more money into the economy stimulates it, or is the argument ad hominem supposed to stand as sound conclusion?

    === But I think you may have pushed your supply and demand curves in the wrong direction;===

    You do know that supply an demand is a toll used by a private buisness to establish price equlization?

    the Economy is a broader socialized structure that is influenced by hings like spending. On a macroeconomic level if you reduce spending your economy retracts.

    Government spends money, a lot of it locally. The slaraies go to people who buy houses; the services support buisness that do the same.

    My logic is simplistic, but overall the concept is well supported. Show me an economy where increasing unemployment and decreasing spending improved economy and I will retract my statement.


  51. - 2ConfusedCrew - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:33 pm:

    and then home to watch half-naked Blagoofette in the jungle eating hairy toads…wait she has done that…maybe she won’t leave the jungle


  52. - Karen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:36 pm:

    OneMan-

    Local cities, towns and counties reinvest. If the locals want radar gun readers every 10 miles of highway they can subsidize it through local revenue. In many rural places of the state county sheriffs do a fine job patrolling the endless miles of road.

    I mentioned local conflicts in my first post. Peterson issue would fall squarely into that and ISP could handle. Need to severely dismantle ISP (secret society)!


  53. - frustrated GOP - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:37 pm:

    too late for teachers to lose their jobs this year. It will have to be next year. There is a notice issue. So what happens is state cuts funding,teachers get paid, school districts go into debt.


  54. - VanillaMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:38 pm:

    If Republicans think this is a “gimmick” or a “scare tactic”, I’ve got news for them.

    - You can’t blame a political party that doesn’t exist. Sorry, but this is the Illinois Democratic Party’s party that is ending.


  55. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:40 pm:

    So they huff and they puff, then pass a temporary tax increase and send it to the Governor and he signs it and wala-no cuts.


  56. - Third Generation Chicago Native - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:43 pm:

    ===So they huff and they puff, then pass a temporary tax increase and send it to the Governor and he signs it and wala-no cuts.======

    Passing this would be political suicide. It looks like a lot of huffing and puffing.


  57. - Shore - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:49 pm:

    Rob N, you are clearly a democrat operative as clear from your postings on team america.

    Having turned down a job in the bush administration and worked with civil servants I can tell you that wasn’t the case. Not everything you read on daily kos is truth. Bush people were mostly from anti-government regions of the country and wanted nothing to do with working in a beuracracy permanently especially not taking orders from some lib think tank/special interest appointee.

    As for the state legislature and these god-like figures madigan, cullerton, alexi, emil, ect that you all show the love for, I’d take 40 team America’s on our side and 40 of his arch nemisis from the left ellenofthetenthblog.com and have more faith in them not to ring up an 11 billion dollar deficit and 7 years of failure to do any reform, and maybe not see our state lose a congressional seat every 10 years. These leaders have outstayed their welcome.

    On the teachers salary there used to be a website, thechampion.org that documented such things. 120k to coach lacrosse and pass out tests on the length of a soccer field. Good work.

    And as far as the state spending goes, these are democrat programs and democrat failures to grow our economy that brought this mess. Blaming the economy is no excuse.


  58. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 4:53 pm:

    karen
    ==OneMan-

    Local cities, towns and counties reinvest. If the locals want radar gun readers every 10 miles of highway they can subsidize it through local revenue. In many rural places of the state county sheriffs do a fine job patrolling the endless miles of road.==

    Then why not take it one step closer, my block or subdivision could get our own cop! We pay him and he can generate revenue for us, heck we can have him camp on Ogden and cha-ching!

    So you think if a local community does not think the mile of I-55 does not need to be monitored that it is fine if it left un-patrolled? Seriously?

    So looking for guys who escape jails, jump bail or do all sorts of other things that may span various counties or cities should be left to what, task forces? Leave homeland security response and coordination to ad-hoc law enforcement groups?

    I know lets let the cities and counties patrol the expressways and see what they can sease when they pull someone over. That works so well in Texas and other places down south. We will be rolling in the dough!

    ==Need to severely dismantle ISP (secret society)!==

    Seriously, a secret society? Are they the freemasons or the illuminati?


  59. - Bill - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:00 pm:

    ==At my high school lots of the best teachers have quit at the tender age of 55==
    That’s the result of dealing with students like you for over 30 years.


  60. - wordslinger - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:02 pm:

    –too late for teachers to lose their jobs this year. It will have to be next year. There is a notice issue. So what happens is state cuts funding,teachers get paid, school districts go into debt.–

    Frustrated GOP, well, certainly not this year — there’s less than a month. But certainly next fiscal, which starts July 1.

    It’s quite common for letters to got out in the spring and summer laying teachers off for the next year, and then reinstating many after retirements, quits and finding out how much money you’re getting from Springfield. Sometimes teachers don’t get the word they’ll be back until August.


  61. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:03 pm:

    Bill,

    LOL….


  62. - Bill - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:06 pm:

    Wow, Confused!Two attempts to deflect the attention away from your guys malfeasance in allowing the state to descend into this abyss. That’s real classy talking about Rod’s wife. True colors come through in times of stress. If you think this is bad wait until the 2010 primary.


  63. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:10 pm:

    Ummm, Bill

    We haven’t controlled the mansion for 7 years and haven’t controlled either house for quite some time.

    The leadership let Rod do all these stupid budget tricks to put this day off, the day we all knew was coming.

    There is plenty of blame to go around, but it seems to me most of it should be with the party that controls the branch of government that approves budgets.


  64. - DuPage Moderate - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:11 pm:

    So is the pension reform now off the table?


  65. - DuPage Dave - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:13 pm:

    “Cosmic Charlie” gets the nickname of the day award. I think maybe I ran into you in Rosemont recently. Go on home, your mama’s callin’ you….


  66. - Bill - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:18 pm:

    OneMan,
    I completely agree. I am assuming that 2Confused works for the big Kahuna.


  67. - worker bee - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:20 pm:

    Is IDOT cuts on the table?


  68. - Ahem - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:20 pm:

    Mind boggling.


  69. - this old hack - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:22 pm:

    this proves that there is no free lunch. Those who are calling for cuts, blah blah blah are full of baloney. Illinois income tax remains one of the lowest in the country and taxes an ever shrinking amount of the economy.

    Nevertheless, I am under no illusions that there will be plenty of irresponsible legislators who will make it difficult to pass the needed revenue increases.

    the 12 BILLION shortfall is the real crisis facing the state. This is what legislators should be focused on, not ethics “reforms” that are poorly thought through and are not “reforms” at all.


  70. - Legaleagle - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:23 pm:

    Hey,then let’s raise the pay of the University of Illinois’ basketball coach a half million bucks, as those wonderful people in charge have proposed! Nobody bails my business out when I run out of money; and I couldn’t dare just double my prices. Let’s try doomsday; anybody who can is already moving out of Illinois anyway!


  71. - MC - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:26 pm:

    I am surprised at the callouseness i have seen on this post. I make a lot more money than most of the people posting on here and i am willing to shell out the additional money for a tax increase to help my fellow man. You people who have this “screw em” attitude toward educators, state employees and those that are less fortunate and rely on needed state services should go back to listening to sean hannity and beating puppies.


  72. - Steve - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:34 pm:

    The choices are coming.Can Illinois afford a massive pension program and other services at the same time?


  73. - Bill - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:38 pm:

    ==Can Illinois afford a massive pension program and other services at the same time? ==

    YES!


  74. - MC - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:44 pm:

    Ok, i take part of that back. there is no reason a captain at the illinois state police as well as sargeants should be making over $100K. that’s ridiculous. for state salaries, check out this link. maybe across the board cuts for people making over 100K in government? that’s just not necessary.

    http://www.pantagraph.com/state-salaries/?appSession=766169453714273


  75. - Capitol View - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:46 pm:

    I was waiting for someone to raise the U of I ’s coach’s salary. That funding comes from a separate account, as sports are run as an on-campus business that pays it own way - not taxpayer supported any more, excpet at the smallest of schools.

    I’m also for examining what state government should and should not continue to do or fund, but in an orderly manner with a one year timeframe for serious study and review.

    But this is the middle of May. Pass the Doomsday budget by May 26th — and let the governor veto it and call the legislature back into special session to formally consider his tax legislation as proposals, and then pass them and adopt a functional budget by May 31st.

    I understand marketing. There still is a case to be offered, to get the public to better understand how badly these tax increases are needed. The Doomsday budget is part of that marketing to voters and to the overly cautious caucus mushrooms in both parties.


  76. - Greg B. - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:47 pm:

    “I am surprised at the callouseness i have seen on this post. I make a lot more money than most of the people posting on here and i am willing to shell out the additional money for a tax increase to help my fellow man.”

    Well, that’s great. Why don’t you pay my taxes and all those other callous fellows posting here, as well. I mean, hey, if you want to help your fellow man so much, here’s your chance these guys. They’ll be grateful too. And you’ll know that you are helping your fellow man instead of your Alderman’s deadbeat brother-in-law.


  77. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:51 pm:

    I suspect YDD is probably right. Besides never bluffing. MJM is unparalled at changing the subject whenever it starts hitting too clsoe to home, no matter who goes under the bus.

    As AA has observed before, he used a phony-baloney “pension ethics” bill to get away from contribution caps. Then it’s something else. Now it’s the Reform Commission and “Madigan Electric.” Voila! Out rolls Gov. Bad Timing with his Delayed Doomsday.

    The State could save some symbolic money by prohibiting the Speaker’s annual staff payoff, er, bonus, er, merit compensation awards to his top toadies, a couple of whom seem to have nothing better to do on State time than blog and harass interns.

    For the most part, I agree with Schnorf that PQ & Co. made the best of a bad situation given their policy choices (personal exemption) in the menu of budget cuts. One quick fix to solve one of the most disagreeable pieces of the budget is to kill the personal exemption tripling and stop the pension skim-the $ amounts are roughly the same.


  78. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:57 pm:

    MC, why shouldn’t State Police captains make $100k if we pay buttloads of desk jockeys the same or more, and they don’t tend to get shot at along the cubicle career path?

    I have a number of concerns about the ISP, but what they are paying frontline up to district command officers ain’t one of them.

    I can’t believe these nitwits who think we don’t need a State Police force. I prefer a little bit more than Barney Fife and Triple A out there protecting my sorry keister on the Interstate at night in the middle of nowhere, thank you very much.


  79. - oneman - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 5:59 pm:

    Just remember
    Everyone else is overpaid it is just you who is underpaid


  80. - Speaking at Will - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:10 pm:

    Everyone realizes this “doomsday” budget is a big pile of bluster that isnt going anywhere right?

    Its fun to take a look at it and then post on Cap Fax about what should or shouldnt be cut, but the reality is that none of these cuts are politcally possible, and even in the shape we are in, politics always comes before finance.


  81. - MC - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:10 pm:

    “Well, that’s great. Why don’t you pay my taxes and all those other callous fellows posting here, as well. I mean, hey, if you want to help your fellow man so much, here’s your chance these guys. They’ll be grateful too. And you’ll know that you are helping your fellow man instead of your Alderman’s deadbeat brother-in-law.”

    I agree that some of the state employees can be cut, and that there should be some type of salary cap for non-exempt civil service employees (e.g. $85,000 for lifers); however, those cuts would not begin to touch the $12 billion dollar hole.

    My main concern is the thousands of kids that will not be able to go to college, the seniors that will not receive adequate care (and could die, dont you have a mother?), the thousands that will lose adequate healthcare (what would happen to your kids if you didnt have healthcare and they got sick?), the thousands of people that wouldn’t receive help from Human Services (guess you dont see that a lot in Naperville), and last, but certainly not the least, veterans (why don’t you people suit up and go fight for your country).

    So, all i am saying is have some empathy for other people and dont be so f++kin greedy. Maybe you buy the taurus instead of the town car, but isnt it worth it to know you have helped somebody else that really really needs it?


  82. - MC - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:26 pm:

    AA, there are highly educated people that work in the private sector that don’t make 6 figures, just because you work somewhere for 30 years doesent mean you should make that much money, just look at the private sector (plus, if you look at averages for salaries, CEO’s of companies on average make @$160K and work a lot more).

    Also, as a former madigan staffer i can assure you that the bonuses arent that big and neither is the $35K a year for how hard and how much you work for the House Democrats.


  83. - Anonymous - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:30 pm:

    from AA: “The State could save some symbolic money by prohibiting the Speaker’s annual staff payoff… a couple of whom seem to have nothing better to do on State time than blog and harass interns.”

    Harrass interns? specifics, please.


  84. - steve schnorf - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:32 pm:

    Will, the problem is that both these cuts and no tax increase can’t be impossible to pass. One or the other (probably bits and pieces of both) will have to pass.


  85. - this old hack - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:35 pm:

    As a former HDem intern myself, and considering many of their top staff began as interns, I doubt this is occuring. But if you have evidence, bring it forward.


  86. - 2ConfusedCrew - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 6:44 pm:

    Bill:
    Please remind us who flushed Mrs. Blagoof into the limelight (sorry if any earlier references did not convey the proper respect for the aforementioned subjects)
    Have a great night


  87. - aloize - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 7:25 pm:

    Hopefully the repubs will lose their minds completely and run on this budget.


  88. - Karen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 7:57 pm:

    Those who support ISP and those ridiculous salaries have to be affiliated with the agency somehow.

    ISP is a complete joke to those who work in real law enforcement. Usually when they come in to “save the day” they jack things up. Like one cop I know say, when they come to the scene they would be best directing traffic. I am sure there are some good cops at ISP but the majority have no clue how to work up a crime scene or deal with gangs, etc.


  89. - Go to hell Karen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:08 pm:

    Karen, I say again, GO TO HELL! Same to you Rich. I thought you don’t post gratuitous insults.


  90. - wordslinger - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:23 pm:

    –Is IDOT cuts on the table?–

    Worker Bee, based on the question, they probably should be.


  91. - Working - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:25 pm:

    Out of all of these comments I see little that address able bodied people who PLAN to leave jobs and “collect”. They all address WORKING people. I know FIVE who live with people who make more than me and “collect”. I think this whole conversation is backasswards. As a matter of fact maybe these people have the right idea based on what I am reading here working people are “evil”. If I am on public aid, even if I am getting farmer subsidies from daddy, or living with a man who makes 60,000 a year I am a victim. Everything I have learned if WRONG. The best career advice I can give my kids is get knocked up by the right person and don’t get married. This makes me sick!!!!!!


  92. - Zoble - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:28 pm:

    This is all set up because the democrats that run this State from the Gov’s office to the House and Senate don’t want to raise taxes and run the goverment without the Republicans onboard to blame at election time…Democrats wanted control, they got it but don’t want or know how to run it!! They got us into this mess, lets watch them get us out. Good Luck Illinois!!


  93. - Bill - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:30 pm:

    Now that definitely deserves a bite me.


  94. - wordslinger - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:36 pm:

    Zoble, what exactly is it the GOP would want to do, if they had the power and the votes? I think everyone’s all ears.

    And Worker Bee, I think the big question is: Under the Doomsday Budget, is our children learning?


  95. - Bobs yer - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:36 pm:

    ABCD: Anyone But Chicago Democrats


  96. - Zoble - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 8:52 pm:

    Wordslinger, How about for starters, have a balance of goverment so the people of Illinois can be heard and not just Chicago.
    So much for Quinn’s love and caring attitude toward our Vets. Lets kick them to the street and not help the war Vets. With that thinking Quinn should not ever attend another Veterans Funeral!!


  97. - JohnR - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:14 pm:

    Zoble - you want cuts, you got ‘em.

    Their your cuts. And all the other gutless wonders’ in Springfield, too. You don’t want to pay for your government, well, you ain’t gonna get it.


  98. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:32 pm:

    AA doesn’t do gossip or innuendo. Public record. Look it up for yourselves if you’re starved for scoops. The point is not the “who”, but the “what,” especially in this era of reform, transparency, and fumigation. You know, glass Houses and such.

    I do feel the pain for all you poor ex-HDem staffers who endured 18-24 months of $35k (and some campaign pay) and are now ensconsed in agencies, unions, and lobbying while knocking down 3-10x that for less heroic and noble efforts.

    If anyone else in State Government ever got a “bonus,” small or large, the ISL forms would spontaneously combust; but it’s ok for The Speaker’s Staff to get them.

    Turning to another point, “Karen” you are absolutely full of crap. You obviously got a big-a ticket or several from the ISP and your caboose is still red.


  99. - MS - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:33 pm:

    “Karen - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 7:57 pm:

    Those who support ISP and those ridiculous salaries have to be affiliated with the agency somehow.

    ISP is a complete joke to those who work in real law enforcement. Usually when they come in to “save the day” they jack things up. Like one cop I know say, when they come to the scene they would be best directing traffic. I am sure there are some good cops at ISP but the majority have no clue how to work up a crime scene or deal with gangs, etc. ”

    Reinvest in local law enforcement. ISP is a waste and should be drastically cut. ISP should strictly be an enforcer of laws within the executive branch and available for local conflicts.

    Also, lessening of big brother practices with “safety checks” would be a good thing.
    ————————————————-

    I’m not quite sure what your problem is Karen, but I’m assuming your a local or a wanna-be who tried very hard to get on ISP and couldn’t make the grade. Or, did you get arrested by a trooper and now your upset? But now you know everything about the ISP because you know someone who’s in “real law enforcement”. You show your ignorance. Why don’t you look up what most officers in other departments are making statewide before you open your yap. You’ll find the ISP is on the same level with most large departments in pay. Why is ISP a waste? Can you expound on your logic? Please enlighten us. “Enforce laws in the executive branch” Huh? What does that mean? “Available for local conflcts” Again, what? ” And, of course the ISP is the only department conducting “safety checks”. Right Karen? It’s called law enforcement. It stops drunks like you from driving.


  100. - OneMan - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:36 pm:

    Last time I checked it was a certain Democratic Governor who talked about he didn’t raise taxes but yet he managed to increase the size of government.

    So yes there is blame to go around… But the one upside of not having any power is you don’t have much responsiblity..


  101. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:37 pm:

    –Is IDOT cuts on the table?–

    Worker Bee, based on the question, they probably should be.

    Ironically, the feds have raised concerns about IDOT’s staffing shortage already, and its eligibility for future federal funding if they don’t have an adequately qualified staff on board. And if IDOT staffing is cut and fails to deliver, the state loses out on federal matching funds. And if they are short staffed, they need to hire more consultants to deliver the program…all that federal stimulus $, etc. It’s a vicious cycle that “doomsday” probably loses more than it gains, if applied to IDOT.


  102. - Ill-Will - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:42 pm:

    Rich,
    Rein these folks end. the ones I agree with and their oppponents. Everyone! Take a deep, deep breath. Please. You are all too smart, even Cassandra.


  103. - Zoble - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 9:45 pm:

    JohnR, I don’t have a problem paying my taxes. And I always do… I’m concerned about our Vets. Maybe you should think about them. But its hard for a non-vet like you to do!


  104. - Plutocrat03 - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 10:20 pm:

    Sounds like the state sounds like an organized crime family….

    Give me all your money or the weak and defenseless get it. (Never mind about the details of the millions enriching me and my friends)


  105. - the ole precinct captain - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 10:23 pm:

    ZZZZZ Look there is going to be a tax increase cause the State has been broke for years and no all those cuts will not happen. Relax people, the Sun will rise and the land of lincoln will still be running.


  106. - progressive dem - Monday, May 18, 09 @ 11:01 pm:

    what about the idea that new york implemented. a temporary income tax increase for those making over a million per year. the % income tax goes up at $1M then increases progressively at $2M, $3M, etc etc……the millionaires tax. It is in place for 3 years , and then goes away. Has a lot of merit ……. in presentation (no one likes rich folks these days) and in time frame (millionaires are less likely to leave the state since it is temporary) this was combined with added innovative tax breaks for the wealthy as well……. We just cant keep cutting things in Illinois….we all agree that cuts need to be made…but all agencies need to be ordered to develop real plans to raise revenues from services or grants etc…and/or cut expenses until they are much more self sufficient. Just a small example, the license fees for guns and hunting, boating, camping etc, seem way to low in relationship to the “value” people receive from them and also in relationship to the money they spend on the rest of the hobby. And what about a legislative commission to open up a new discussion about broad changes we need to make to attract businesses that bring in jobs and pay taxes? we need a leader as governor, quinn just continues to bumble around like a cork on ruff waters.


  107. - Pot calling kettle - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 12:05 am:

    Too many posters seem to have forgotten that the function of government is to serve the common good.

    A quality education system benefits us all, as do good roads, police, and healthcare. I want to live in a society where people are willing to work towrd the common good. It does cost money, which the government collects in the form of taxes. Here in Illinois, we have had the benefit without paying the full price for decades. Now it’s time to pay. Deal with it.


  108. - Bubs - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 12:11 am:

    I’m actually impressed. Everyone is finally facing the music, which has been coming on for a long time, and rapidly accelerated in the last four years.

    I think there will be a tax increase passed and this current agony will end. Then in 2010 perhaps we can finally discuss the financial train wreck that our state government has become, and what to do about it outside of limping from crisis to crisis, with stopgap decions.


  109. - LN - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 1:56 am:

    Shore: “Those state scholarships handed out by state reps are a waste…”

    So I’ll just send you my tuition bill for next year then? …since my high school teacher father and nurse mother can’t afford to pay out of pocket and I don’t qualify for federal aid. Those GA scholarships are the only way some students can go to college. But I guess I have to apologize to you for trying to better myself and the state I live in. Sorry!


  110. - HGW XX/7 - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 7:42 am:

    Has anyone checked out the searchable database contains job and salary information for over 82,000 Illinois state employees? www.pantagraph.com/state-salaries/
    The Illinois Tollway has must have a record amount of employees making over $100,000 per year, heck the head custodian hauls in $104,199.14 per year.
    Not bad for pushing a broom!


  111. - Secret Square - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 8:06 am:

    While I sympathize with your situation, LN, it’s my understanding that GA “scholarships” don’t actually provide any money to pay for the recipient’s education — they are simply waivers telling the school not to charge tuition to the recipient. If the recipient doesn’t pay for his/her education, who does? You guessed it — other students (through higher tuition and fees charged to them).


  112. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 9:06 am:

    A quality education system benefits us all, as do good roads, police, and healthcare. I want to live in a society where people are willing to work towrd the common good.

    Sit down Jimmy Stewart, the director called, “cut!”

    How many of “all” are getting a quality education right now? How long have we been shelling billions to this? What has been the results? Children are getting a worse education than ever. This has been the case for over thirty years. Obviously shelling more money through the bottomless buckets set up by our state government has been an utter waste, if you want to claim that “quality education benefits us all”. We are farther from acheiving that goal than ever. But those in power are refusing to change this. There is no reform. They just want us to keep paying for an educational system that does not work.

    “Good roads”? Illinois has not had a Capital Bill in years. Chicago was once the hub of the airline industry and lived large. Not anymore. Somehow after a century of being the transportation hub of North America, Chicago’s infrastructure didn’t keep up enough to remain top dog. Yeah, I’d like good roads too, but where has our money gone?

    You claim that you want to live in a society where people are willing to work toward the common good. No one disagrees with that, yet we also have to wonder why those paying for society’s common good is so lop-sided and why their voices are refused to be heard by those of you too comfortable to listen. We want government to serve us, not vice-versa. Your pipe dream is merely that. It doesn’t take into consideration the massive failures we have been enduring over the past few generations in the areas that are bankrupting us.

    We don’t need to hear a mommy remind us to behave. We need a leader to make the changes we are willing to pay for.


  113. - Dee - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 2:13 pm:

    The only way we will ever straighten out this state is to cut to teh core. Make everyone of those cuts, and than see what you cannot live without. After you do all of that it should be the only time you consider raising the income tax, not before. We have state and government workers with bloated salaries, compensation pakages and retirement plans. It is time to grandfather them in and than start from scratch. I say No tax increase Governor Quinn until you have done everything else necesary to clean your house. People would be amazed what we can live without, and what services we really do not need. But absolutely the biggest gripe is the insane retirement packages that we are all subsidizing for all public and govenment workers. Their retirement is at least 2/3rds higher than that of the general public. Their retirement age is earlier. Their medical is better. They work shorter hours. If their pension plan loses mioney because of teh drop in teh stock market due to porrr investing. We make up the difference by doubling our payments into it. This is absolutely bizsrd. No one does that for teh people in corporate america or any private industry. This just simply has to stop. Lay them all off, We do not owe anyone a golden parachute. No new taxes Governor Quinn.


  114. - Dee - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 3:12 pm:

    Thosw teachers that quit at 55 are really retiring, which they can do early at theeir same exact salary. They do not quit. They retire. They are on the taxpayer’s dime for the rest of their lifes with bloated pensions medical plans. They all retire at 55 and than work the required quarters in private industry to get social security and medicare too. It’s a big scam. so they really will be retiring with $70,000 a year incomes. Well the average private worker retires with about $20,000 in Social Security a year and whatever they managed to save for themselves. And poor This is an unbelievable problem. The big joke about this is all of these subsidized by us government workers and elected officials are trying to eliminate social security because they do not have to be on it. The higher the government employees salrary theh worse it gets, and the higher theri pension is. For example the $100,000 a year gym teacher will be retiring onm uch more than that, and you are paying for it right now. You may get soical security, but if he retires at 55 which he is allowed to do , he will work long enough to get that also in addition. allof that for working 5 hours a day 10 months out of the year. I know I our children will suffer if they get paid less, or have a poorer education.NOT)Everyone complains about the poor unionized auto workers. These poor sots do not hold a candle to well organized teachers unions and the public service unions when it comes to raping the public with their unbelievable greedy selfserving demands. Lay them all off and Start over. These jobs are not rocket science. No One will suffer except these greedy culperts.


  115. - Dee - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 3:37 pm:

    Let’s go through the doomsday cut. It will be the only way paid government employes will get the message that life is not a “bowl of cherries.” Compare their guaranteed wages, plus cola, plus 6 per cent annual increases, plus IMRF, plus accumulated sick pay amounting years of pay, plus their 2 to 4 week vacations, plus healthcare to the GM, Chrysler, Auto Dealer, CamCar, Bank, Insurance, home builder, realtor, employees and all the unemployed without a source of income–how will they pay for those tax increases and salaries of government employees who are having a hard time. It’s time to cut back, cut, cut, cut and cut some more.


  116. - Na - Tuesday, May 19, 09 @ 10:32 pm:

    Dee, you don’t know what you are talking about.

    All teachers aren’t retiring at 55 and teachers aren’t able to get Social Security thanks to President Reagan. Upstate teachers skews the average salaries and retirement figures. I’ll retire from teaching at the age of 60 with a PhD, nearly 40 years of service, and get under $70,000 a year.

    Some claim the education is bad now. Cut 7 to 10 teachers from each High School and see how bad it can get. Years ago when parents actually raised their children 35 kids in a class could happen. Try it now and see how little ‘education’ goes on. The teachers will spend their days keeping the students from killing each other instead of teaching them.


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