Rauner rejects Democrats' call to borrow for bill backlog - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Rauner rejects Democrats' call to borrow for bill backlog

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Bruce Rauner has rebuffed borrowing billions of dollars to pay long-overdue state bills.

The Republican rejected calls Monday from Democratic Comptroller Susana Mendoza and Treasurer Michael Frerichs (FRAYR'-iks). They both urged Rauner to sell up to $6 billion in bonds to pay off a chunk of a $14.4 billion backlog of bills.

He told reporters in Chicago that "more borrowing on top of the spending behavior of the state government is not an optimal answer."

The backlog grew during a two-year budget standoff between Rauner and Democrats who control the General Assembly. It ended in July when lawmakers approved a budget over Rauner's vetoes.

The plan includes borrowing at an interest rate of less than half of the 12 percent in late-payment interest owed to vendors.

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