Civic Federation Says Full Year Budget Needed, Not Stopgaps

May 9, 2017

A Chicago tax policy and research group is urging Illinois lawmakers to pass a full budget instead of ``piecemeal'' solutions in the final weeks of the legislative session.

The Civic Federation said Tuesday that to close an estimated $4.6 billion deficit Illinois needs spending restraints, increased revenues and borrowing for unpaid bills.

May's end marks a budget deadline. However, there's been a two-year stalemate between Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Democratic-controlled Legislature. A stop-gap budget expired in January.

Federation President Laurence Msall calls the impasse a ``spectacular failure.''

The federation rejects Rauner's proposed budget, saying it would increase the unpaid bill backlog from $12 billion to $19.7 billion and relies on uncertain savings, one-time revenues and a tenuous Senate compromise.

Rauner's spokeswoman blames ``decades of fiscal mismanagement'' for the crisis and calls for ``structural reforms.''