We need your help
Illinois legislators are currently debating a Grand Bargain comprised of 12 bills that, if passed, will result in the state finally having a balanced budget.
Please call now and urge Senator Neil Anderson, Senator Chuck Weaver and Governor Bruce Rauner to vote yes on the bills.
The 12 bills include reforms to workers’ compensation, pension, local government consolidation, education funding reform, spending cuts and revenue increases. While the bills don’t provide the perfect solution for any single constituency, they do provide a compromise in which all constituencies receive key elements that will help move the state forward. Most importantly, the Grand Bargain will provide a balanced budget that will begin to pay down state debts and ensure businesses, service organizations, and state governments receive payments from the state.
Chamber staff and the Business Advisory Council comprised of Chamber members have tracked this issue closely, are actively monitoring the deal as it continues to progress, and have weighed in numerous times in support of common sense reforms and fiscal responsibility.
With your support, we are cautiously optimistic that this bill will begin to put us on a path to relieve many of the fiscal burdens experienced by businesses, organizations, and local government entities as a result of operating without a budget.
Here is a simple message you can use:
I’m calling from the Quad Cities to urge Governor Rauner (or Senator Anderson or Senator Weaver) to support the Grand Bargain. The lack of a budget in the state of Illinois has caused considerable stress on our local economy. We recognize that the Grand Bargain represents a fair compromise among all parties, and it presents the opportunity to put our state back on the right path. Please pass the budget and help restore certainty and predictability in the economy.
Contact your elected officials:
Senator Neil Anderson
Senator Chuck Weaver
Governor Bruce Rauner
In addition, please call Senator Cullerton and Senator Radogno and thank them for their patience and efforts in crafting and keeping the Grand Bargain alive.
Update as of 6:00 p.m., 5/17/16
The Senate stands adjourned till noon tomorrow (Thursday, May 18). Today, seven bills passed and two failed. There are at least five more bills (including revenue increase and workers compensation) that were not called, though additional bills may be needed for further tweak. There’s a lot of work and negotiating to be done, but this was a good start.
SB 3 – allows for consolidation of local units of government
SB 8 – reforms the State’s procurement requirements
SB 7 – expands gaming by creating Chicago casino
SB 4 – authorizes $7 billion in bonds to pay unpaid/outstanding debts to businesses, services, and local governments (this is repaid $1 billion per year over seven years)
SB 6 – omnibus spending bill (includes approx. $3.8 billion spending cuts & savings)
SB 1 – several education reforms including adopting an evidence-based formula funding designed to help create parity among school districts
SB 16 – reforms state pension that will save an estimated $1 billion annually
SB 478 - Property Tax Freeze (2 yr), fails 33- (required 60% or 36 votes because it would override home rule)
SB 42 - an implementation bill incorporating changes from GOP senators and Gov. Rauner, fails 27-24-5
Still under consideration:
SB 5- reforms Chicago Public Schools pensions while also providing some state funding assistance
SB 9 - revenue increase (~$5 billion) by raising personal income tax to 4.95% , corporate to 7% and creating a number of service taxes. This bill, however, is still being negotiated so those numbers may change.
SB 10 - helps local governments with borrowing
SB 12 - provides a number of reforms to workers compensation that will save Illinois businesses $100 – 120 million