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The backlog is horrible, but it could be even worse than we know

Monday, Jun 26, 2017

* All the following charts are from the comptroller. Click here for the full document. The state’s bill backlog has never been this horrible

Ugh.

* It would be helpful if the administration was required to fully disclose all the bills it’s sitting on because the comptroller can only estimate the backlog

* The QC Times agrees

The Debt Transparency Act is a good piece of legislation that’s in line with the private sector’s best practices.

That’s why a veto-proof, bipartisan slate of Illinois lawmakers thrust it upon Gov. Bruce Rauner’s desk. And that’s why Rauner — facing a potential revolt from his fellow Republicans — should sign it immediately. […]

As Mendoza tells it, on any given Friday, as much as $1 billion in bills might land on her desk from out of the blue. These aren’t new charges, mind you. In some cases, they’ve been festering in executive agency accounting departments for up to 10 months. Then, at the last minute, they get submitted.

Rauner’s primary motto has centered on interjecting business sense into historically wasteful state government. No private entity — at least one designed to last very long — would manage its books the way Illinois does now. Just keeping track of cash flow is impossible when a few hundred million could suddenly appear on the books, just because the executive doesn’t feel like submitting the vouchers.

If Rauner is really about good business, then DTA is a no-brainer.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

17 Comments
  1. - Galena Guy - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:36 pm:

    “Gonna fix Springfield” Riiiiight……sigh.


  2. - Anonymous - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:37 pm:

    It’s much worse than what the Comptroller has.

    If the state intends to pay us for what they’re holding hostage in agencies, I think we’re talking about doubling what is owed to Department on Aging providers as half of what we bill is court ordered as Medicaid to be paid, while the other half is sitting at Aging since July 2016, even though there was a stopgap appropriation for that funding through December 2016.


  3. - T Sowell - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:40 pm:

    DTA is a good idea - the true backlog would give even more evidence to the need to put in hard spending caps


  4. - Anonymous - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:43 pm:

    If? Never seen the QC Times so optimistic.


  5. - Team Warwick - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    Great charts.
    Failed strategy of a failed admin with a failed ideology.
    if only he had listened to others.
    Hubris.
    i agree with a previous poster that this is NOT the ILGOP and they are probably ruined now for at least a decade


  6. - Team Warwick - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:48 pm:

    I agree its worse than shown.
    Comptroller doesnt have all the bills to be paid.
    whenever the Comptroller cant process checks, the agencies have an “on hold” pile. Thats SOP.


  7. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 12:58 pm:

    So depressing, so pathetic and so unnecessary. Rarely have so few imposed so much pain on so many for such little cause.


  8. - Winnin' - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 1:10 pm:

    If every legislator looked at the state’s financial picture as if it were their last day in office, they’d put in an immediate fix and leave Rauner twisting in the wind.
    Do what’s right.
    Let Rauner twist.


  9. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 1:17 pm:

    All of this just so Rauner and Griffin can squeeze a couple more pennies out of working men and women trying to get by.


  10. - Thoughts Matter - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 1:41 pm:

    48 percent of the backlog at the comptroller is medical.

    80 percent of the backlog at the agencies is medical-
    With all but a pittance of that being group health claims.

    GOP method to solve that is to reduce the appropriation for group health insurance claims in future budgets?


  11. - Mama - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 1:54 pm:

    “The Debt Transparency Act is a good piece of legislation that’s in line with the private sector’s best practices. ”

    I really do not see Rauner signing the DTA bill. Rauner does not appear to want transparency.


  12. - AnonymousOne - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 2:21 pm:

    Just saw a piece on national cable news about Illinois. Horrible portrayal of our leadership and pretty embarrassing to know our state is being mocked as a sunken ship.

    Funny thing is, thought, that those around the country will ask who the governor of ILlinois is and wonder what is going on. No one will ask who the speaker of the house is.

    THe buck stops with the Big Guy. It’s all his.


  13. - Mama - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 2:22 pm:

    Rich, what happens if the governor kills the budget deal again?


  14. - don the legend - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 2:41 pm:

    What would the numbers and pie charts look like if Comptroller Wingman would have won?


  15. - @MisterJayEm - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 2:56 pm:

    The silence from Rauner’s usual champions is deafening.

    – MrJM


  16. - Peoria Citizen - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 3:55 pm:

    I’m guessing the Medical category is a lot of medicaid.


  17. - RandyC - Monday, Jun 26, 17 @ 6:04 pm:

    The chart shows the unpaid bill backlog dropping by almost half from 2011 to 2015. Not coincidentally the same period the temporary income tax increase was in effect. Following the expiration of the increase — which Rauner called for during the election — the unpaid bill backlog exploded. This is a solvable problem, just requires the courage to do something unpopular.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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