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ILLINOIS STATE BUDGET CRISIS AT A GLANCE: REVENUE DOWN, SPENDING UP, NO ONE IN CONTROL AND NO END IN SIGHT
BACKDROP: Gov. Bruce Rauner delivers his 2016 Budget Address on Feb. 17. He’s in an awkward situation: The Budget Address is intended as a preview of the Illinois state budget for fiscal year 2017, which starts July 1. State government has yet to adopt a budget for FY 2016, which started last July 1.
Making matters worse, without a budget to cut spending or raise more revenue, state government since July 1 has been spending far more than it’s taking in. Taxpayers will have to make up the difference whenever Rauner and the Democrat-controlled General Assembly pass a budget. The longer the current budget impasse continues, the bigger the hit on taxpayers will be. And with indications now that all sides are squeamish about voting on any tax increases before the Nov. 4 elections, we could be well into FY 2017 before we even begin to pay down the state’s debts of FY 2016.
Here’s a quick look at how things stand as Rauner delivers his second Budget Address without having signed his first budget.