* State Rep. Jack Franks (D-Marengo) wins our award…
I offer a simple alternative, in return for my support of more borrowing. I call on Governor Quinn to make $2 in cuts for every $1 borrowed.
I’ll let you know when Franks comes up with $10 billion in cuts. Simple. Right.
* The governor has been using his “cuts” to education spending as a way to win support for a tax hike. This has often backfired, with people blaming him for the cuts and trashing him for the tax hike. Senate President John Cullerton has now proposed a partial solution to Quinn’s school cuts through a cigarette tax hike. He also got in some digs at the governor’s school funding cuts. From a press release…
“On March 10, 2010, Governor Pat Quinn proposed a series of cuts to education that includes spending reductions of $613 million in General State Aid payments and $400 million in mandated categorical spending for critical programs such as special education and school transportation.
After serious assessment and discussion with members of the Senate Democratic caucus, it is evident that there remains little if any support for these cuts to schools. So, to be clear, Senate Democrats support a budget plan that holds General State Aid payments to schools at current levels.
To avoid a reduction in mandated categorical spending, a bi-partisan coalition of members of the Illinois House of Representatives must pass the cigarette tax (SB 44). Through this measure, Illinois will realize approximately $200 million that will be matched with $120 million in federal funds, relieving pressure from Medicaid costs in the budget.
Our caucus continues to maintain a serious commitment to developing a short-term and long-term approach to stabilizing the state budget. We support significant spending cuts and recognize that Illinois’ outdated revenue system is in serious need for reform. However, draconian cuts to education would drop Illinois to worst-in-the-nation status when it comes to state support for schools and will kick an estimated 20,000 teaching professionals into the unemployment line.”
They’re going to try a piecemeal approach to closing this school budget hole. The cig tax is just one of the tools. Quinn is sticking to his tax hike guns, however.
A Carterville mom says she was denied medical care for her children because the state isn’t paying its bills. […]
“On one point, I want to be mad at the doctors because I feel like they have a moral obligation to hang in there and not bail on us when times get rough,” says [Ashley Wright of Carterville].
During a recent check-up, Ashley’s four month old son Noah was denied immunizations by his pediatrician.
The doctor said Ashley’s insurance provider wasn’t paying its bills. Ashley doesn’t know how to fight back.
“We can’t go after the doctors, they’re not being paid. We can’t go after the insurance company, they’re not being paid. But how do we fight the state?” she asks.
* Gov. Quinn talks tax amnesty, adjournment (Part 1)
* Gov. Quinn talks tax amnesty, adjournment (Part 2)
* Live Blog: Evanston goes to Springfield
* Lawmakers Mull Budget with No Tax Hike
* Quinn angling for more education money as Obama visits Illinois
* Lawmakers Fear Deja Vu with Budget
* Herald & Review: Crisis has no bearing on senators’ decisions
* Pantagraph: Moving deadline for paying bills ignores problem