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“The failure of Illinois lawmakers to restore revenue needed to support essential services is causing widespread damage to the state, with children, seniors, and those with disabilities the hardest hit,” says a September 2015 report by Lisa Christensen Gee of the Fiscal Policy Center at Voices for Illinois Children. “When lawmakers allowed personal and corporate income taxes to roll back on January 1, 2015, Illinois lost between $5 billion and 6 billion in annual revenue. Since then, both the governor and the General Assembly have failed to restore the revenue required to enact a fully funded, year-long budget.”
The report continues, “Illinois is now in its third month without a budget. While some services are being partially funded as a result of court orders or the availability of federal dollars, the lack of state appropriations has resulted in the deterioration — and in a growing number of cases, the elimination — of critical services for children, families, and communities.
“The harm is widespread — ranging from afterschool programs and autism services to conservation police and support services for seniors. Our state’s most vulnerable people, including children, people with disabilities, and seniors, are especially threatened by this inaction.
“Many providers of these critical services have been instructed by state agencies to continue to provide services at the level of the last fiscal year (which ended June 30). Others have been issued new contracts with lower service levels. In either case, outside of consent decrees and federal pass-through funds, zero state dollars are being spent on many critical state priorities.
“Who is left standing at the end of this is completely in the hands of the Governor Rauner and the General Assembly. To prevent further damage to children, families, and communities, lawmakers and the governor need to take responsibility for funding our state’s priorities by restoring the revenue we need to fully fund a year-long budget.”
Review the report for additional details by program and type of service being affected. Voices for IIlinois Children says, Urge the governor and lawmakers to take action now to fully fund programs that invest in children, families, and communities.