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Theory vs. reality

Friday, Jan 29, 2016

* Yesterday, Rep. Scott Drury (D-Highwood) said he was voting “No” on a bill to appropriate over $700 million for MAP grants, community colleges and adult education programs because appropriating the money would take pressure off the General Assembly to get a budget deal with the governor.

That’s a fine theory. And he may even be right. And even if he’s wrong, and even if the governor flip-flops and signs the bill, there is no funding source to pay for it.

* But real life has a way of busting through

Decatur school board members expressed aloud their reluctance to approve the suspension of adult education classes until funding is restored by the state but did approve the decision at the Tuesday meeting.

“We never talk about adult education, probably because it runs so well,” board member Fred Spannaus said. “They serve a population that might never get into the work force without their help. The money’s there, but it’s caught up in this incredibly stupid political dispute.”

Adult education, with the exception of the current certified nurse assistant class that will end March 2, will be discontinued indefinitely.

* From a Herald & Review editorial

Many of the adult students are taking the classes in order to better themselves. For example, as reported by Herald & Review reporter Valerie Wells, Robert Brown comes to class even though he works an overnight shift that end at 6 a.m. He is working on improving his reading skills and hopes to enroll in a nurse assistant class and eventually study to become a nurse practitioner.

“You’re taking away from people who are trying to learn,” he said. Brown said he was more than a little angry that the state government can’t come up with a budget.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Marty Funkhouser - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 9:53 am:

    You know I used to be a federal prosecutor, right?

  2. - Tumbleweed lines - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 9:57 am:

    Any vote against MAP will be used against you in the court of public opinion…. do you understand you rights?

  3. - Anonymous - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:02 am:

    Maybe someone should sit down with Rep Drury and explain what the impasse is about?

  4. - CCP Hostage - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:06 am:

    As a fellow hostage, I’m watching eagerly to see how the court of public opinion will judge the proceedings on the MAP grant bill. Is there any hope this move may bode good things for the rest of us?

  5. - illini97 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:09 am:

    To build on –CCP Hostage–’s point, is this the Democratic majority testing Rauner’s assertion that people all over are telling him to “Stay strong” and fight the good fight?

  6. - Century Club - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:12 am:

    This is like in The Usual Suspects when Keyser Söze shoots his own family so to show the other gang who’s the boss.

  7. - Team Sleep - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:12 am:

    I saw analysis that the MAP funding is 8.8% above the previous year’s levels. This is a good time for Governor Rauner to get out his pen, AV the thing back to FY2015 levels and then issue a “take it or leave it” presser. After all - as I attempted to note the other day - it only takes a majority of votes to override a line item. 8.8% of nearly $375-$400 million is a decent chunk, but that would be better than an outright veto.

  8. - Mama - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:13 am:

    The MAP Grant should be passed for all higher ed. including adult ed. programs. However, what good is it to pass any bill without the means to fund it?

  9. - Mama - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:15 am:

    Rep. Scott Drury should vote No - due to zero funding for the bill, but he is voting No for the wrong reason!

  10. - Anonymous - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:17 am:

    Mama - what funding source is providing the K12 approp that was enacted?

  11. - illini97 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:23 am:

    Aren’t we funding everything at this point via court order with no identified appropriation authority? Why is MAP funding different/worse than any other spending.

    I mean, I guess we could refer to the FY2016 budget to see what we are spending on MAP. Wait…

  12. - Anon221 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:27 am:

    Doesn’t the bill that was passed provide for movement within current funds to those that have been zeroed out? I realize that there is the bigger picture of overall deficit spending, but it seems that in this part of the “piecemeal” it could be done. Revenues are still coming into the Education Fund (007).

  13. - Anon221 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:30 am:

    correct site for searching funds- Education is 0007

  14. - kitty - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:35 am:

    I visit Highwood occasionally, great restaurants, love Miramar and Maria’s Bakery. Highwood has a large, growing and mostly poor Hispanic population, many families in this area struggle financially. A good number of high school grads accepted to attend college are the first in their families to achieve this. Once again, Mr. Drury is not acting in the best interests of working class families in his district in order to bring attention to himself. Using an abstract theory pertaining to need to create pressure to justify a no vote may result in financially marginalized students from his district not being able to attend college.

  15. - Sir Reel - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:37 am:

    At this point, funding anything at fiscal year 15 levels increases the deficit because the 5% income tax is history.

    It’s such a mess now with court mandates funding programs at FY15 levels, schools at an even higher level than FY15 and other spending at above FY15 levels.

    Each of these fixes are justified but the State’s fiscal situation deteriorates daily.

    A mess.

  16. - A Jack - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:43 am:

    Decatur has some of the highest state unemployment, yet can’t afford to retrain its workers. Can we all give the Governor a round of applause for this accomplishment?

  17. - Anon221 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 10:47 am:

    A Jack- Hey, he told ‘em what to do in a PowerPoint!!/s

  18. - olddog - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:02 am:

    This is the harvest of seeds that were deliberately sown.

    “In Illinois there’s been a long-time history of what I would call social service, social justice, a bigger role for government in the safety net than in many other states,” Rauner said at a tax policy conference sponsored by the George W. Bush Institute. “I think we can drive a wedge issue in the Democratic Party on that topic and bring the folks who say, ‘You know what? For our tax dollars, I’d rather help the disadvantaged, the handicapped, the elderly, the children in poverty. I’d rather have my tax dollars going to that than the SEIU or Af-scammy (AFSCME), who are out there for their own interests.’”

  19. - olddog - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:02 am:

    This is the harvest of seeds that were deliberately sown.

    “In Illinois there’s been a long-time history of what I would call social service, social justice, a bigger role for government in the safety net than in many other states,” Rauner said at a tax policy conference sponsored by the George W. Bush Institute. “I think we can drive a wedge issue in the Democratic Party on that topic and bring the folks who say, ‘You know what? For our tax dollars, I’d rather help the disadvantaged, the handicapped, the elderly, the children in poverty. I’d rather have my tax dollars going to that than the SEIU or Af-scammy (AFSCME), who are out there for their own interests.’”

  20. - olddog - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:03 am:

    Sorry about posting twice. I think I’ve got to break down and replace my mouse.

  21. - Dirty Red - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:09 am:

    And it’s Decatur. The needs of that ever-regressing local economy aside for a moment, the Governor invested a lot of time and assurances there during the campaign.

  22. - Wensicia - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:18 am:

    Can Drury explain how using hostages to force a budget has been effective so far?

  23. - Ghost - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 11:55 am:

    with the booming job market and employment in decatur the city doesnt really need adult education and opportunities to learn and change carreers….

  24. - Mattman - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:03 pm:

    === And it’s Decatur. The needs of that ever-regressing local economy aside for a moment ===

    Dirty Red: the whole state is regressing, don’t single out Decatur

  25. - VanillaMan - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:40 pm:

    Rauner said that there will be sacrifices - it was the naïve citizens of Illinois who thought that the sacrifices would be fair.

  26. - Anon221 - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 12:59 pm:

    Not everyone, VM. Those that didn’t vote for him had their suspicions.

  27. - jeanne Dough - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 1:40 pm:

    Because the people affected by this funding loss have little advocacy, it isn’t an area that gets much attention. Our community college is half a million short in funding for adult education alone. (If it weren’t for road salt, the program wouldn’t be operating this semester at all.) While we have continued classes that are considered essential, I’m watching what was once a premiere program that took decades to build slowing unraveling.

    We serve people who inspire us daily with their work ethic and determination–working jobs that most of us would be unwilling to do and attending a three-hour daily class, all for a chance at a better life. But putting aside the personal benefit to the individuals and their families, consider the benefit to the state when these individuals are able to get jobs that no longer require supplemental support through state and federal programs.

    It just makes no sense.

  28. - Allen D - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 2:45 pm:

    The state should be more fiscally responsible than it has (nothing new, I know) but we cannot spend spend and spend no matter what the program is… this may be painful but I believe is the state had came to a stop because of funding then this would have been over long before now.

    my family uses a monthly budget and if we don’t have the money we don’t write a rubber check for it… we wait until we do have the funds to make the purchase…

    The state needs to have some of the same guidelines and understand what a budget is and not be greedy.

  29. - Scott - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:41 pm:

    Allen D - Yes, the state should be more fiscally responsible - I agree with that. But simply refusing to pay for services that have been rendered would get you tossed into the clink. So should my community college (along with every other College in the state) have simply closed their doors, told their workers to go home, and cancel all classes and services when the legislature and Governor failed to do their job and pass a budget? I suspect that if you were one of our students - or are the parent of one of our students - you might have reacted badly to that. And if your employer simply told you sorry, no money, no job, and sent you home, you are OK with that, too? If not, what is your solution?

  30. - Ghost - Friday, Jan 29, 16 @ 4:47 pm:

    Allen D if yur family needs more money you might also, say , get a second job to increases rev.

    minnesota increased taxes, raised the min wage and has a booming economy. it turns governemtn paying its bills and employees, and workers making extra money, circulates money and causes the economy to thrive.

    not unlike how we got out of the recession in the 20s

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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