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*** UPDATED 1x*** Today’s number: 10.6

Friday, Aug 14, 2015

By Barton Lorimor Email | @bartonlorimor

* From a press release…

Nearly 90 percent of state spending has now been committed because of recent court rulings and Rauner administration actions even though there is no state budget in place.

Illinois Senate Democrats estimate that 89.4 percent of all state general funding is covered by court orders, consent decrees, mandated state spending or other agreements and arrangements. In other words, almost 90 percent of what the state usually spends has already been committed even through there’s no state budget in place.

In recent weeks, a federal judge ordered the state to pay Medicaid providers who serve children in Cook County. Gov. Bruce Rauner’s administration subsequently announced that it would expand those payments to Medicaid providers serving children throughout the state. Most recently, the administration further expanded that to cover all Medicaid providers and all services statewide in order to avoid additional legal action.

That means nearly $7.8 billion worth of Medicaid spending will occur at the Department of Healthcare and Family Services despite there being no state budget in place. Medicaid spending across all state agencies is approaching $9 billion in the absence of a budget. The Medicaid program and overall budget numbers reflect Senate Democrats’ best estimates based on tracking of past budgets and estimated spending for those programs in the current budget year.

The remaining 10.6 percent, according to the Caucus, was broken down in an attached graphic…

More…

At the moment, the court orders and other agreements have put the state on a trajectory to spend an estimated $38 billion this fiscal year. The budget lawmakers approved that the governor vetoed, contained $36 billion in spending and investments. The state is expected to bring in $33 billion in revenue this budget year.

The thing is that these consent decrees do not cap spending. They only say what services or operations should be funded - sometimes broadly. To the best of our knowledge the administration is sticking to Fiscal Year 2015, but absent a budget and with the decrees structured the way they are there isn’t anything binding them to that.

So what if the budget passes with an appropriation that is below what was spent under the consent decree? It doesn’t sound like there is solid answer to that right now. Depending on how late in the year a budget comes and how much has been spent by then, is it possible there won’t be enough left to cut so that revenues and expenditures line up?

The whole scenario reminds me of speculation during the campaign that Rauner would have to sign a tax increase because the budget would be that bad and his hands would be tied. Are we headed that direction?

* I did ask the Governor’s Office if they agreed with the Senate Dem’s analysis. Their response…

The Governor proposed and asked the legislature to support numerous proposals that would result in billions of dollars of savings to the State, including adjustments to Medicaid provider rates, reductions in the amount the state spends on units of local government, pension reforms, workers compensation reforms, and reforms to the state employees’ health insurance program, among others. None of those proposals have been enacted by the legislature. None.

Instead the Madigan Democrats continue to support the failed status quo and push only for tax increases which failed to solve any problems over the last 4 years.

* Senate Democrats announced their intentions to make MAP Grants their next funding goal. They call it a “financial aid compromise to end student limbo…”

Democrats increased MAP funding in a budget proposal approved earlier this year. Rauner, however, vetoed the legislation, leaving many colleges and students in limbo for the coming year. Because of the governor’s veto, the state began its budget year on July 1 without a full budget plan, forcing colleges and universities to start up a new academic year with no state support and no financial aid for students.

That’s where the Senate hopes to begin to add some certainty. Since the governor vetoed efforts to raise MAP funding, the Senate Democrats are now putting forward a compromise that mirrors funding levels recommended by the governor in his budget plan.

Gov. Rauner recommended spending $373.3 million on student financial aid through MAP. The General Assembly approved an addition $24 million in student aid that led to the veto.

The bill is here.

* Related…

* Our Opinion: Topinka correctly predicted Illinois’ heart attack: The state is like a body, Topinka said during a campaign debate between her and Democratic challenger, former Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon. “If you try to pull it all out now, you will take a $2 billion hit, and you will cause the state to have a heart attack,” Topinka said. “You will also cause me to have a heart attack, because it would leave us high and dry.”

* Budget stalemate adds to Illinois harness racing industry’s woes

* Local colleges crediting students for MAP grants held up by state budget impasse

- Posted by Barton Lorimor        

63 Comments
  1. - LIberty - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 12:58 pm:

    Ruaner is simply making the state a bigger mess.


  2. - Wordslinger - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:04 pm:

    You can run but you can’t hide.

    Due to the govemor’s brilliant legislative strategy of “leveraging” the state budget and refusing to deal with it until he got his anti-union agenda, the state is on track in FY16 to spend $38 billion while taking in $33 billion.

    That’s some strategery.

    I think Gov. Edgar’s words from the other day may be prophetic; the GA might just go home now and let Rauner deal with the mess he wanted.

    He was warned, by Edgar and others.


  3. - The Dude Abides - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:09 pm:

    @Liberty, you are absolutely correct. They have sure made a mess of things. They expect the legislature to do their heavy lifting for them and they don’t want to be held accountable for any of the sour medicine that needs to be administered. They are still hawking the Governor’s pension reform, which 95% of the people who ever read this blog know is illegal. If they drastically increase health care costs to retirees, that’s likely to end up in court too. I do agree with the administration that there are far too many units of local government and there’s a lot of money that could be saved if that problem is ever adequately addressed.


  4. - Anonymous - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:12 pm:

    These consent decrees do not cap spending, but they do not mandate spending minimums either. They simply require ==compliance==, which can be very subjective.


  5. - Anonymous - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:16 pm:

    Madigan was relying on a shutdown and service reductions to add public pressure on Rauner for negotiating purposes. That has not emerged, and at some point he will be forced to give a little.


  6. - AC - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:18 pm:

    ==tax increases which failed to solve any problems over the last 4 years==

    Except for making full pension payments, and comparatively timely vendor payments, but why let facts get in the way of a good argument?


  7. - GA Watcher - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:24 pm:

    Wordslinger makes an excellent point. Would make for an interesting fire drill on the 2nd floor.


  8. - UIC Guy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:25 pm:

    All of this spending is either court-mandated or approved by Rauner, right? So how can he escape the responsibility of finding a way to pay for it? (And also for MAP grants and higher ed, please. Pretty please?)


  9. - Joe M - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:27 pm:

    Those services in the “What’s Left” column could end up in a world of hurt soon, because once the $33 billion of expected revenue is spent, those services can’t be funded with out an increase in revenue. Higher Ed ($1.9 billion) and Human Services programs/grants stick (over $2 billion) look especially vulnerable.


  10. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:30 pm:

    Governors own the budget.

    If the legislature just lest things at the “call of the chair” allowing for 89.4% of spending allocated via ONE signed approp and judicial decree, it will be Rauner’s that programs that populated Rauner Family YMCA just fall to the wayside.

    The Press and Legislative Shops failed Bruce Rauner, but

    Bruce Rauner failed Illinois and those most in need, when they needed a governor most.


  11. - Let'sMovetoNorthDakota - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:32 pm:

    So we have a de facto 10% budget cut . Brilliant. That apparently is the Madigan-Cullerton-Rauner plan. And everyone can blame the greedy state employees and pensioners for causing cuts in social services. Brilliant, and nobody saw it coming.


  12. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:34 pm:

    Meantime, the unfunded Illinois National Guard prepare to occupy state agencies, allowing the Bruce Rauner failure be seen with Labor unrest Rauner craves.


  13. - NoGifts - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:43 pm:

    Medicaid is mostly federal funds. Isn’t it about 10% state match?


  14. - Liberty - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 1:44 pm:

    Legislative Guide to Local Governments in Illinois- Special Districts

    http://www.ilga.gov/commission/lru/SpecialDistricts.pdf


  15. - Team Sleep - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:14 pm:

    Gifts - the pie chart (yum, pie) is for GRF spending. That is the state’s portion of Medicaid spending. I did the math one day at the end of May, and Senator Steans’ bill included over $20 billion in Medicaid, so it looks as though the state’s GRF share of Medicaid is approximately a 40-45% match. But part of this is also the ACA incentive to increase Medicaid coverage, so it is not necessarily a long-term guarantee.


  16. - pundent - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:15 pm:

    ==Madigan was relying on a shutdown and service reductions to add public pressure on Rauner for negotiating purposes. That has not emerged, and at some point he will be forced to give a little. ==

    How exactly does this put pressure on Madigan? If anything it only adds support to his proposed budget because it underscores the fact that 90% of what the state spends is mandated by law. If your response is “all that Madigan and the legislators he controls want to do is raise taxes” this doesn’t exactly help your argument. Set aside your ideological views, we don’t have enough revenue to meet our obligations.


  17. - Mama - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:23 pm:

    Appropriations withheld:
    * $77.8 Please explain which programs & grants are included in “Other State programs & grants”.
    * $148.2 - Transfers out requiring legislative action (What transfers?)
    * $52.4 - “Remaining K-12 grants (which grants?)
    * $2,012.9 - Human Services programs & grants (Is this all of them?)


  18. - nixit71 - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:24 pm:

    I was disappointed by Judy’s “heart attack” comment back then. The state had 4 years to make the necessary changes to their diet to avoid said heart attack. Instead, they continued to gorge.

    A heart attack is a sudden, unplanned event.
    The tax hike expiration was not sudden. It’s expiration was planned. There were no surprises. Everyone knew the law as it was written. Failure to take the necessary precautions falls on the Legislature.


  19. - Facts are stubborn things - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:28 pm:

    Structual deficit.


  20. - illinifan - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:30 pm:

    Okay if I understand this correctly we have a 5 billion budget shortfall with only spending 90% of what is to be spent. What has been spent is non optional spending that is required by law (salaries, payments to health providers, some education etc.) The other 10% includes some other spending that is important (GRF to keep federal match etc.) Am I missing something, or doesn’t this make a relatively strong case for why the state needs more income?


  21. - Miss Marie - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    So the Senate Dems put together a chart with numbers to breakdown the current situation, and the Governor’s Office responds with talking points . . .

    Yup, that seems about right.


  22. - illini - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    Wordslinger makes an excellent point and Willi is absolutely correct when he says “Bruce Rauner failed Illinois and those most in need, when they needed a governor most.”

    This mess has to be resolved and the Governor has to take some positive steps to work towards that end. His anti-union platform ( and I have never belonged to a union ) will never pass - he needs to become realistic!


  23. - Apocalypse Now - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    =Bruce Rauner failed Illinois and those most in need, when they needed a governor most. =
    Oswego. Always to critic, but never a real solution.


  24. - Team Sleep - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:37 pm:

    All talking points aside…

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Governor Rauner wants structural changes to a lot of these programs. He’s probably willing to horsetrade to do it, but he’s so sidetracked with the “turnaround agenda” that he can’t bring himself or order his staff to discuss changes to Medicaid or the LGDF or state employee pay & benefits.


  25. - zatoichi - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    Gonna spend $38B and get $33B. That’s a short of $5B which means the money starts running out in April. Bonds, loans, pensions and other mandated payments will need money to cover those costs. Life is going to get really bad for human services about December. That is also the time when ACA kicks in with mandatory health insurance coverage for thousands of community providers with under 100 employees. That cost is not in any state rate. Tick..tick..


  26. - Mama - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    ++The tax hike expiration was not sudden. It’s expiration was planned. There were no surprises. Everyone knew the law as it was written. Failure to take the necessary precautions falls on the Legislature.++ No, it falls on the current governor because he asked the legislature to wait, and they honored his request.


  27. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:45 pm:

    - Apocalypse Now -

    ‘Nember “Pat Quinn failed…” by Candidate Rauner?

    Yeah, me too.

    It comes with the big chair


  28. - Mama - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:45 pm:

    ++-zatoichi- Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:41 pm:++

    Pensions are paid from the pension funds, not the General Revenue Fund. Therefore, pensions will continue to be paid.


  29. - Cook County Commoner - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:48 pm:

    Some explanation of “public pressure” having an impact on the players would be appreciated. My take:

    Gov. Rauner appears immune to “public pressure.” He is unconcerned about re-election or a legacy, it seems to me. I don’t buy that he is such an egotist that it matters. Guys with his kind of money appear beyond such mortal concerns.

    Maybe the plight of the indigent, etc. could exert “public pressure” on Gov. Rauner,
    but court orders seem to have minimized that.

    Organized labor appears beyond “public pressure” based on Art. XIII, Sec.5 of the IL Constitution and recent court rulings. Labor appears to be holding all the wild cards in this game.

    The State Assembly appears the most susceptible to “public pressure” based on concerns for re-election and legacy. And there are 177 pressure points there. Increased taxes to pay for someone else’s retirement after decades of mismanagement by the 177 could be serious “public pressure” if the voters were aroused.

    Seems to me that the only available and effective “public presuure” is on the Assembly and local government at this time, and it is minimal.


  30. - UIC Guy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:49 pm:

    @zatoichi: ==Gonna spend $38B and get $33B. That’s a short of $5B==
    No, it’s worse than that, unless the things in the ‘what is left’ category are all going to be funded at zero. Do you like having a system of public higher education, and opportunities for the not-so-affluent to take advantage of it? Turns out it costs money.


  31. - pundent - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    ==The tax hike expiration was not sudden. It’s expiration was planned. There were no surprises. Everyone knew the law as it was written. Failure to take the necessary precautions falls on the Legislature.==

    I would respectfully disagree. The legislature took this action at the governors request. This suggests that he either had a plan to make up the revenue shortfall or some ideas on how spending could be reduced. Where’s that plan? As OW is fond of saying, governors own these things.


  32. - jerry in chicagoj - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:58 pm:

    Wow, we fail as a state.

    Can we just legalize and tax marijuana?

    Did you know property values are up !0% in Denver since they stopping arresting citizens for doing something they already do?


  33. - Wordslinger - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 2:59 pm:

    CCC, Rauner has blinked many times: K-12 funding, salaries, reinstating thenfed funds, social service cuts to FY15.

    Hence, the U-Turn theme.


  34. - walker - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:00 pm:

    The Governor’s staff was asked a simple numbers question, and refused to answer. Par for the course.

    Is this a good estimate of where we stand on committed expenditures, or is it not? Yes or no?

    Nuding must know.


  35. - SAP - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:04 pm:

    ==At the moment, the court orders and other agreements have put the state on a trajectory to spend an estimated $38 billion this fiscal year. The budget lawmakers approved that the governor vetoed, contained $36 billion in spending and investments. The state is expected to bring in $33 billion in revenue this budget year.== Not to excuse the legislature for passing an unbalanced budget, but this is why I hate budgeting by court order. This is why we have a separation of powers.


  36. - Excessively Rabid - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:09 pm:

    ==This is why we have a separation of powers. ==

    I don’t disagree, but if the other two branches would do their jobs better, the involvement of the courts would be greatly reduced.


  37. - Langhorne - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:09 pm:

    ===The Governor proposed and asked the legislature to support numerous proposals that would result in billions of dollars of savings to the State, including adjustments to Medicaid provider rates, reductions in the amount the state spends on units of local government, pension reforms, workers compensation reforms, and reforms to the state employees’ health insurance program, among others.===

    pure bunk. dont mean a thing, if you aint got the votes. to get votes that count, you actually have to introduce actual bills. legislatin’

    if the mandated spending is not capped, it seems to me the administration could either sequester funds, cap the funds internally, or adjust the pace of spending to a workable level.

    the indy 500 is what, 200 laps? we have gas to go only about 170 laps. so we have to slow down the pace, find extra gas, or a combination. rauner seems content to run out of gas. then it is too lat to slow the pace.


  38. - Anonymous - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:10 pm:

    Looks like we will be following Brady’s advice and privatizing higher ed after all.


  39. - Wordslinger - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:10 pm:

    Walker, the Frat Boys are in over their heads.

    The $2.2 billion in “savings” was pension reform that was obviously unconstitutional in light of the SB1 ruling.


  40. - Jack Stephens - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:11 pm:

    @sap:

    Bruce’s Budget (Constitutionally Mandated, Separation of Powers) is several billion short of being balanced.

    Thoughts?


  41. - walker - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:14 pm:

    Schnorf was right on the numbers. Again.


  42. - Anonymousse - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:15 pm:

    We’ve all seen this movie before.

    You know, the one where investors buy up nursing homes, strip out assets, and then flip the resulting hollowed-out companies? Thereby leaving highly vulnerable people at risk?

    I heard last week that it’s in remake. Starring the entire State of Illinois.

    Not only that. Dig this: it’s gonna be on IMAX, too.


  43. - Hit or Miss - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:16 pm:

    ===the court orders and other agreements have put the state on a trajectory to spend an estimated $38 billion this fiscal year.===
    ===The state is expected to bring in $33 billion in revenue this budget year.===

    Doing the math, income appears to be about $5B less than spending if the 10.6% of the budget identified in the graphic above as being covered by court orders, etc. is in fact not spent. If the budget impasse continues, this implies that at the current spending rate “trajectory” all the cash will spent with about 2 months to go in the FY. I wonder what happens then?


  44. - Amalia - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:32 pm:

    Topinka….um, Dawn Clark Netsch. If she had been elected governor the best fiscal mind in the state would have been in charge. she was preaching all of this fiscal need for years and years and years….


  45. - Striketoo - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:42 pm:

    “Seems to me that the only available and effective “public pressure” is on the Assembly and local government at this time, and it is minimal.”

    Absolutely correct. It is the sole responsibility of the state legislature to appropriate the funds needed to run state government, and it has failed to do so. It is NOT the responsibility of the Office of the Governor. That office is responsible for administering available resources. Many commenters here simply ignore the fact that the problem is the failure to appropriate sufficient funds, and that falls squarely on the shoulders of the legislature, and those who run it. Simply mindlessly repeating that the Governor has sole (or even the major) responsibility for the current crisis ignores this reality.


  46. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:46 pm:

    ===That office (Governor’s) is responsible for administering available resources.===

    Please see Article VIII, Section 2, subsection (a).

    Report back, - Striketoo -


  47. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 3:49 pm:

    - Striketoo -

    That’s the Illinois Constitution, just to help ya.

    Further,

    The state agencies administering state services are under the Governor’s umbrella. Those agencies, and what they spend, their programs, hires, fires, “fires”…

    Governors own. “Pat Quinn failed…”

    Bruce Rauner failed to get a budget. That’s how it’s always been, this isn’t abything new.


  48. - Austin Blvd - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:00 pm:

    Shysters on the second floor.


  49. - Austin Blvd - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:03 pm:

    Repeat after the Rauner Republicans:
    “We don’t have a revenue problem. We have a spending problem.”
    Now they own it.
    Enjoy the fair.


  50. - Apocalypse Now - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:09 pm:

    =
    ===That office (Governor’s) is responsible for administering available resources.===

    Please see Article VIII, Section 2, subsection (a).

    Report back, - Striketoo -=
    Oswego in cue. Rooting for the downfall of Rauner and the GOP.


  51. - Precinct Captain - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:10 pm:

    Strike too, the legislature appropriated money. Rauner vetoed. Try to keep up.


  52. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:10 pm:

    Oh - Apocalypse Now -,

    Following the constitution isn’t rooting for or against anyone, lol


  53. - SAP - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:10 pm:

    Rabid That is the point I was trying to make. The Governor proposed a bad budget, the Legislature passed a worse budget, and the courts are creating the worst budget on a piecemeal basis with no concept of what they are doing.


  54. - Norseman - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:11 pm:

    Word, should we sum this up as Rauner’s intransigence to address the budget with the adoption of his anti-union agenda has resulted in the creation of an unconstitutional unbalanced spending problem.


  55. - Wordslinger - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:14 pm:

    Norse, that’s the result.

    Do you think that’s how they drew it up in the huddle?


  56. - Norseman - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:21 pm:

    Word, I don’t think the frat boys have left the tailgate party yet.


  57. - Austin Blvd - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:25 pm:

    In Rauner’s bidnesses, he had to deal with the SEC. Perhaps realizing how to deal with that government agency, he just laughs at the prospect of having to follow the Illinois constitution.


  58. - Michelle Flaherty - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:40 pm:

    Where do you go to have a court-ordered budget declared unbalanced?


  59. - Norseman - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 4:42 pm:

    Michelle, isn’t Sandack supposed to be screaming, “it’s unbalanced.”


  60. - Striketoo - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 5:21 pm:

    Hey OW. Nothing like ignoring part b, is there, to make a slanted, one sided argument.

    “(b) The General Assembly by law shall make appropriations for all expenditures of public funds by the State. Appropriations for a fiscal year shall not exceed funds estimated by the General Assembly to be available during that year. (Source: Illinois Constitution.) “


  61. - cdog - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 6:04 pm:

    From the post ==So what if the budget passes with an appropriation that is below what was spent under the consent decree? It doesn’t sound like there is solid answer to that right now==

    It seems that if Rauner and the kids spent as much time managing their agencies, as they do causing trouble in the neighborhood, they might accomplish some real strategic improvements.

    There must be some economies of scale, some wasteful practices, some smart improvements, etc, that can save Illinois some money. Get busy Rauner. This is your job now. You are acting slightly unqualified and appear to be distracted on a personal agenda.


  62. - Michelle Flaherty - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 6:13 pm:

    Norseman,
    I meant to say:

    “Where do you go to get a court-ordered budget declared unconstitutional?”

    Long week of bad typing.


  63. - Cassandra - Friday, Aug 14, 15 @ 6:30 pm:

    What an elaborate trajectory to get to….the middle class Illinois taxpayer. How much? When? How retroactive? Will the Dems and Rauner have the nerve to make their income tax hike retroactive back to January? Will the tax take us back to the Pat Quinn income tax? Higher? A smidgen lower? It’s all about our money. The rest is theater. Stay tuned.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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