SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois House of Representatives voted 69-48 on Tuesday to approve an Emergency Budget Bill (HB 318) to close a $1.6 Billion funding shortfall for the current FY 15 budget, which runs through June 30. State Rep. Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) voted in favor of the bipartisan agreement negotiated between Governor Bruce Rauner and legislative leaders.
Under the provisions of HB 318, over 80% of the funding gap will be filled by utilizing unused money in various special state funds not needed for what they were allocated for during the current fiscal year, amounting to approx. $1.3 Billion. The remaining amount comes from an across-the-board spending reduction of 2.25% across all state programs through June 30; excluding payments for pensions, state employee health care, and funding for services for the mentally ill, developmentally disabled, and autistic children. Child care funding for low-income families will also continue for the duration of the current fiscal year.
“It’s time for somebody to stand up and be the adult in the room,” Rep. Mark Batinick said. “My priorities in resolving this crisis included protecting vital funding for mental health and doing away with unnecessary spending on medium-speed rail, a luxury we cannot afford during these tough budget times. This all comes down to prioritization. That’s what we did today and what I intend to keep doing moving forward.”
House Bill 318 now goes to the State Senate for approval.
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