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Budget roundup

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

* For starters, here are the bill numbers from yesterday’s hottest legislation

The budget is House Bill 859. The plan that gives Quinn more budget powers is Senate Bill 3660. The [pension] borrowing plan is Senate Bill 3514.

* The SJ-R has an excellent roundup

The [tax] amnesty program is expected to generate about $250 million. From Oct. 1 to Nov. 8, people can make good on taxes owed that were accumulated between June 30, 2002, and July 1, 2009. The bill also allows the state to sell debt to private collection agencies. […]

The wide-ranging [Emergency Budget Act] bill also calls for the state to take out a loan against money it would receive in future years from the national tobacco settlement, a deal worth about $1.2 billion in upfront money. Republicans warned the move is shortsighted because the state uses annual money from the tobacco settlement to fund a variety of programs, including $580 million in prescription drug assistance.

The bill further authorizes Quinn to borrow money from restricted state funds, which previously were “swept” of money to divert to other state expenses and not repaid. This bill requires the money to be repaid with interest, although skeptical lawmakers doubt that will happen. Currie said the administration expects to borrow about $1 billion from the funds. The bill also requires lawmakers, statewide officials and top agency employees to take 12 furlough days in the next budget year. […]

Currie said the [state budget] bill calls for $26.2 billion in general fund spending, the part of the budget over which the state has the most control. She said that is about $400 million less than the current budget, reflecting a 5 percent across-the-board cut in spending for operations.

Go read the whole thing.

* The future, provided by the Senate Dems…

The budget bill is HB 859 which the Senate passed on May 7th, the House concurred to our budget last night. The budget has passed both Houses.

The Senate returns today at 4 o’clock. The House has been in session since 10 this morning.

* Related…

* House approves state budget

* Illinois House votes to leave decision on budget woes to governor

* House passes borrowing plan to fund pensions

* House OKs borrowing to cover state pensions

* Illinois House Votes To Borrow Billions

* Borrowing has huge role in proposed spending plan

* House finds one vote needed to pass key part of state budget

* Lawmakers advance budget proposals

* Plan to borrow $4 billion for pensions barely clears House; GOP leader ‘disappointed’ in Black

* Suburban Dems budget plans receive mixed results

* Illinois House slashes $200 million in Medicaid, rejects other cuts

* SJ-R: Spare state retirees dose of ‘tough love’

* Pantagraph: A few reasons why public sees need for cuts

* And in case you missed any of them yesterday, here are Tuesday’s videos…

* Quinn glares at House GOP Leader Tom Cross during speech on Pension Borrowing bill

* Rep. Miller explains why he changed his vote on pension bond bill

* Rep. Miller speaks enthusiastically about importance of pension borrowing

* Pritchard to vote present until leaders meet

* Pritchard explains change of vote on Pension Bond bill

* Rep. Coulson explains her ‘present’ vote on Pension Borrowing Bill

* Cross discusses Rep. Biggins’ vote for the pension bond bill and why Rep. Pritchard flipped to “No”

* Rep. Bob Biggins explains his vote change on Pension Bond bill

* Raw video: Tom Cross media availability after passage of Pension Bond bill (Part 1)

* Raw video: Tom Cross media availability after passage of Pension Bond bill (Part 2)

* Nekritz on $100M cut fail, other amendments

* Nekritz on cuts that made it to the budget

* “Good talks,” but Madigan stays quiet on details

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, May 26, 10 @ 12:20 pm:

    I’m guessing Bill Black doesn’t give a rat’s behind what Tom Cross thinks.

  2. - The KQ - Wednesday, May 26, 10 @ 12:38 pm:

    The State already has the authority to use third party collectors. I used to staff the Illinois Debt Collection Board a while back. I haven’t had a chance to read the bill, so maybe it does somthing more than the Board is authorized to do today?

    From the Comptroller’s web site:
    The Debt Collection Board was created under Public Act 86-1425 in 1991. The Debt Collection Board is comprised of the Director of the Department of Central Management Services, the State Comptroller, and the Attorney General, or their designees. The Board was established to provide a centralized collection service to aggressively pursue delinquent accounts that are more than 180 days past due. The Board pursues debt accounts after reasonable efforts by the individual state agencies that are primarily responsible for collecting debts owed to them.

    The Debt Collection Board is authorized to enter into contracts with outside collection agencies to help collect outstanding debt. These collection agencies are paid a contingency fee based on the age, nature, and amount and type of accounts referred. Currently, the Board has contracted with four vendors to collect debt for the State. Agencies can also contract debt collection activities with these vendors under the Board’s contract as well.

  3. - Vole - Wednesday, May 26, 10 @ 1:45 pm:

    Nekritz: unpaid bills that we will not be able to meet

    Does Quinn end up with all the authority on which bills do get paid and which do not?

    If you have a donut and you have to divide it up, who decides who get the hole? Does the legislature not budget for holes? Or do they just act like they can do without any holes? Or do they just not know the meaning of holes? Or do they just not know the difference between buns and donuts?

    Holy moly. This makes my bun hurt.

  4. - Rambler - Wednesday, May 26, 10 @ 5:03 pm:

    Quinn’s a hoot. I’d like to see video of him sprinting into the chamber.
    Excellent coverage of all this by the way.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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