- Published: Thursday, March 17, 2016 04:14 PM
Sen. Daniel Biss (D-Evanston) joined Democratic lawmakers Thursday in offering the Rauner administration guidance on spending priorities by voting for an appropriations bill that authorizes payments for the state’s human service providers, universities and more as the budget impasse drags on.
“Right now 90 percent of Illinois government is moving along on autopilot because of court orders and consent decrees. The other 10 percent is on the verge of shutting down. That 10 percent is just as vital as the other 90 percent,” Biss said.
The Senate approved legislation Thursday that authorizes Gov. Bruce Rauner to meet the state’s contractual obligations with human service providers and Amtrak rail service, pay for universities and colleges, and put money toward libraries, rape crisis centers, autism programs, homelessness, after-school programs, school construction grants, job training, mental health services, medical screenings and research, local tourism and more.
As Gov. Rauner’s impasse with the Legislature over a state budget continues, human service providers statewide are closing their doors because the state has not paid them since July. The same is true for public universities around the state.
“What’s being allowed to happen in Illinois is completely irrational and patently unfair. We need a spending plan, we need to hammer out a way to pay for it and we need to do what’s right for Illinois before it’s too late to recover,” Biss said.