Gov. Pritzker presents budget address to IL lawmakers

Gov. Pritzker proposes budget

SPRINGFIELD, IL (KFVS) - Illinois Governor JB Pritzker gave his first budget address at the State Capitol in Springfield on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Gov. Pritzker presented his address to lawmakers at Noon.

Click here to watch the address.

According to Pritzker’s office Illinois has an estimated $3.2 billion deficit.

Illniois State Senator Paul Schimpf released the following statement:

While appreciate the Governor’s stated commitment to provide funding for schools, universities, and infrastructure projects, much of his plan seems to rely on many of the same budgetary gimmicks that got us into the dire financial circumstances that we are in today. I believe Illinois needs to live within its means, and practice responsible budgeting. We should be looking to trim expenses to match revenue instead of missing pension payments and raising taxes. The budget address is, however, the first major step in the budget making process, and nothing is set in stone yet. I am hopeful that negotiations can lead us to a responsible, fair, balanced budget, if all sides are at the table.
State Senator Paul Schimpf, 58th District

State Rep. Dave Severin also released a statement:

Governor Pritzker sure can give a good speech,” Severin said. “That being said, I favor substance much more over style, and some of the things I heard today were very concerning. Illinois’ pension obligation is the worst in the country,” Severin said. “Our debt to the pension systems is more than $100 billion in long term obligations. Skipping a pension payment or even shorting the pensions with a Rod Blagojevich-like borrowing and bonding scheme moves us backwards, not forwards on fiscal sustainability.
State Rep. Dave Severin, 117th District

State Senator Dale Fowler release following the budget address:

While I can recognize the efforts of the new administration to hit the ground running, I have serious concerns about the how the governor’s proposed budget will impact Southern Illinois. Broad and unrealistic proposals, such as a shortsighted minimum wage increase, a costly progressive income tax system or Band-Aid fixes for Illinois’ ballooning pension crisis, will have lasting detrimental consequences on the region. In his inaugural address earlier this year, Governor Pritzker vowed to do more for Southern Illinois, and I was encouraged to hear him reiterate that commitment today in his address. Hopefully he will put action behind his words and from here we can move forward in a bipartisan manner that will help Southern Illinois and tackle the very real issues facing our state.
State Senator Dale Fowler, 59th District

House Speaker Michael J. Madigan released the following statement following Gov. Pritzker’s budget address:

“Amid the challenges we heard spelled out today, we also heard that we now have a governor who recognizes the magnitude of these challenges and will work with us to address them. House Democrats stand ready to work with Governor Pritzker and our Republican colleagues, bring all options to the table for honest negotiation, make the tough decisions, continue to stand strong and protect critical human services and quality schools, and move Illinois forward.”
House Speaker Michael J. Madigan

The State’s fiscal year begins July 1.

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