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Cullerton: Don’t call it a stopgap or a lifeline

Wednesday, Apr 26, 2017

* Illinois Public Radio

Gov. Bruce Rauner has been saying he thinks a comprehensive budget deal is “very close.” He points to negotiations in the state Senate, so Brian Mackey asked the Senate president if that’s the case. […]

I asked Senate President John Cullerton, a Democrat, if the governor had been hearing that from him.

“No,” Cullerton said. “But he should come back from wherever he is now, and we’re in session, and we should talk and he could tell me — I’d be happy to know what he’s talking about.”

The governor was actually touring the Beer Nuts factory at about that time

A self-proclaimed fan of Beer Nuts, Gov. Bruce Rauner took a guided tour of the Bloomington plant on Tuesday, followed by a meeting with employees where he touted the state’s economic potential.

Yep, while women were rallying in Springfield and both chambers were in session, the governor was touting Beer Nuts in Bloomington.

* Anyway, back to Cullerton

Illinois Senate President John Cullerton says he and his colleagues will take up a partial government spending bill passed by the House earlier this month.

The legislation would release more than 800 million dollars piling up in special state accounts for social service contractors and state universities.

Republicans call it another “stopgap” budget. House Democrats called it a “lifeline.” But Cullerton says neither term is accurate.

“Really it’s important for you to know that I don’t view those as stopgaps or lifelines,” Cullerton said Tuesday. “Those monies are trapped in those funds, and cannot be spent by the governor or anybody else unless we authorize them to spend it.”

* More

“If we don’t pass some authorization to spend those [funds from two state accounts set aside for social service agencies and higher education] the money can’t be used, which is kind of ridiculous when we have so many people who are owed so much money,” Cullerton said. “That’s why we need to authorize the spending of those funds.”

The measure has arrived in the Senate, where there are anticipated changes, which will have to be approved in a committee. But it could be called as soon as this week.

Asked whether the bill to fund social services and public universities removes the pressure to get a full budget, Cullerton said the numbers speak for themselves.

“It doesn’t. We still have the pressure of owing $13 billion and spending $8 billion more than we have coming in,” Cullerton said. “That’s enough pressure.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

21 Comments
  1. - Fixer - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:24 am:

    Good responses from Cullerton. And good on Mackey for actually asking questions instead of just repeating the Rauner talking points. More reporters should follow his lead.


  2. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:30 am:

    More like this from Cullerton. And good on Mackey too.


  3. - Anon - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    Can we start calling him Governor Beernuts?


  4. - Gruntled University Employee - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:36 am:

    I propose we start calling him something that rhymes with “grass bowl”.


  5. - Rabid - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:45 am:

    I have it on good authority his focus is nuts. “he will drive them nuts”


  6. - Winnin' - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:54 am:

    It now appears that Cullerton is the only grown-up in the room.


  7. - Scamp640 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 10:56 am:

    @ Winnin’: Took the words right out of my mouth…


  8. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:01 am:

    To the Post,

    ===“Really it’s important for you to know that I don’t view those as stopgaps or lifelines,” Cullerton said Tuesday. “Those monies are trapped in those funds, and cannot be spent by the governor or anybody else unless we authorize them to spend it.”===

    “… when someone with actual governmental acumen speaks to the actual governing process, and makes all other actors look foolish”

    Between Cullerton and his Spokesperson Patterson…

    … why Democrats can’t follow and piggy back on those two in the messaging to the governing, I’m still confused as to this utter incompetentcy of messaging, overall, by Democrats, to actively counter Rauner.

    It’s borderline malpractice.

    Good on Cullerton. I look forward to Radogno continuing her own crusade to the actual governing.


  9. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:12 am:

    He said last week he was having fun as governor. (Lets save the capital G for someone who may deserve it). He IS having fun, and one of his biggest jollies seems to be sticking it to every faction that doesn’t agree with him 100%. A real belly laugh at the Beer Nut factory…(’get it?). A repulsive character trait that he seems to expand daily. Black had a ball as well until his character caught up with him and his blow drier.


  10. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:13 am:

    Sorry,. Blago


  11. - Dr X - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:16 am:

    From the Pantagraph article: “We should be the place where businesses come to grow, but we really are not, and we haven’t been for a long time.”

    Has any reporter asked Beer Nuts or any other company why they stay in IL?

    Has any reporter asked Beer Nuts or any other company how less regulations and lower tax will expand their business? A buyer has to exist and a business finds a buyer - otherwise there is no business. So how do term limits or workman’s comp sell more Beer Nuts?

    In the article, all Rauner focused on for Beer Nuts was education, location and infrastructure, two of which is is actively trying to destroy.


  12. - Former hillrod - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    Brass mole?


  13. - Anon221 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:22 am:

    While Rauner was feeding his “squirrel” reforms Beer Nuts, this is going on all over the state. Rauner would call this savings, I’m sure.

    One reason why, if there is not a continuing appropriation for certain funds, appropriations need to be made in a timely manner-

    Heartland Community College (Normal, IL) Vice President for Business Services Doug Minter:

    Minter said state funding is so unreliable, even when money does finally arrive on campus, it sometimes has to be returned because it can’t be used. He said that happened a year ago when cuts were made to an adult education program, and then funding came in on the last day of the fiscal year.

    “There was roughly $35,000 that we had to send back to the state, which I consider quite ironic. But, not only did they give us the money late, then it was too late for us to say, ‘Ok well, we could have used it for this particular purpose to benefit the students,’” Minter said.

    http://wglt.org/post/heartland-cc-budget-aims-avoid-tapping-reserves


  14. - JTF - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 11:36 am:

    “Beernuts? I thought you said GO nuts…”


  15. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:32 pm:

    ===… why Democrats can’t follow and piggy back on those two in the messaging to the governing, I’m still confused as to this utter incompetentcy of messaging, overall, by Democrats, to actively counter Rauner.

    It’s borderline malpractice.===

    They either get with the program quickly, or its likely 4 more years of Rauner, Willy.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:41 pm:

    ===They either get with the program quickly, or its likely 4 more years of Rauner…===

    If they don’t understand what YOU’RE saying, they really can’t be helped…


  17. - City Zen - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:42 pm:

    Cullerton: Don’t call it a stopgap…

    …I’ve been here for years…


  18. - MissingG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:41 pm:

    CityZen beat me to it. LL Cullerton


  19. - walker - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:30 pm:

    And please don’t call any of these partial spending authorizations a “budget.”


  20. - tobias846 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:58 pm:

    I understand where Cullerton’s coming from on this. It isn’t a budget. But if this thing passes, the media will call it a “stopgap budget,” and the next words on everyone’s lips will be “we’re done with budgets until after the 2018 elections.”

    Last year’s “stopgap” wasn’t a full budget either; it was woefully incomplete, but nevertheless the media declared “Impasse Broken!” and called it a day. The same thing’s going to happen this time unless Rauner vetoes it.

    $13 billion in unpaid bills SHOULD be pressure to pass a full budget, and it would be in any other state. But not here.


  21. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 7:11 pm:

    –“If we don’t pass some authorization to spend those [funds from two state accounts set aside for social service agencies and higher education] the money can’t be used, which is kind of ridiculous when we have so many people who are owed so much money,” Cullerton said. “That’s why we need to authorize the spending of those funds.”–

    So taxes have been collected by the state from the people for those funds, and those who are supposed to receive those funds are owed money from them by the state.

    But Rauner and his GA crew are opposed?

    What do you call that, taking money from people to pay for goods and services, and then not paying those owed who delivered those goods and services?

    In some circles, that would be called “fraud.”


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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