State Budget | WGLT

State Budget

Barry Hitchins
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

The sales pitch that Unit 5 leaders hope to make to taxpayers later this year began to take shape Monday, as district officials sketched out the need for a community task force—and possibly a consultant—that could lobby the public for passage of a revenue-raising referendum.

Illinois lawmakers from both parties have been bragging about passing a balanced budget this year, but Comptroller Susana Mendoza says the state still needs to address more than $7 billion in unpaid bills.

Heartland Community College
Staff / WGLT

The Heartland Community College board on Tuesday approved a tentative $32 million operating budget for fiscal year 2020, which begins July 1.

Unit 5 district offices
Staff / WGLT

Unit 5 schools are still in a deep financial hole, even with some increased state budget stability.

Colleen speaks to a crowd
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

In the 90 days since Gov. JB Pritzker appointed her head of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Colleen Callahan said she’s gained an understanding of just how big an impact the state’s two-year budget impasse had on the agency.

Illinoisans are likely to have to pay more sales tax when shopping online after state lawmakers made two big changes to tax rules. State tax collections are expected to increase by $288 million this year.

First, marketplaces – think eBay or Etsy – will be required to collect the 6.25 percent state sales tax on behalf of third-parties selling to Illinois customers. Until this legislation, it’s been up to each seller to collect the tax. And, Rob Karr, president of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, said many do not.

WGLT

At the close of the spring session, one lawmaker reflects on the season he said did not start in the bipartisan nature Gov. JB Pritzker promised.

Man hunched over, looking depressed
flickr/findrehabcenters (CC BY 2.0)

The new state budget awaiting Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s signature includes what advocates say is a much-needed $80 million increase in funding for mental health and addiction treatment.

Laura Furlong
Eric Stock / WGLT

The state of Illinois is increasing funding for agencies that serve those with intellectual and developmental disabilities in its new budget, but the head of Marcfirst in Normal said it remains to be seen how much impact that will have.

Illinoisans will soon pay more for gasoline and cigarettes. Those are just two tax increases needed to pay for a $45 billion infrastructure plan, which includes money from sports betting and additional casinos.

Illinois Republican on Thursday were trying to elbow their way back into budget negotiations.

The move comes as lawmakers have just two weeks left in their annual legislative session, with a long to-do list that includes passing a state budget.

Authorities are investigating an anonymous letter threatening the lives of anyone in line to receive state-funded pensions. The letter was mailed to several legislators and at least one public radio station. In big letters, the mailing says “Dead people can’t collect fat state pensions,” and goes on to warn lawmakers and union leaders of death by arson, strangulation or other unspecified means.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker wants to create a host of new taxes to help balance Illinois’ budget — on everything from e-cigarettes to medical insurance companies.

NPR Illinois reporters have been breaking down those revenue-generating ideas. Today we’re looking at a potential tax on shopping bags.

Unit 5 Superintendent Mark Daniel
Staff / WGLT

The Unit 5 school board that will be elected this spring will face some unpleasant policy choices.

Pritzker press conference
J.B. Pritzker transition team

The House Executive Committee has approved a plan pushed by the incoming governor to increase salaries he can offer his cabinet.

Marijuana plants
Teresa Crawford / AP

A new report suggests Illinois state and local governments would take in a combined $525 million in new tax revenue if the state legalizes recreational marijuana.

Kid plays with water table
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

The two-year state budget crisis made life difficult for many of the 105,000 nonprofits across Illinois that rely in some way on taxpayer support.

People inside the arena
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Illinois State University plans to replace the lower bowl seating and add ADA compliant seats, box seating locations and a suite in Redbird Arena.

A new report says Illinois state government is at “elevated risk” in the event of an economic downturn.

Two girls speak to the Normal Town Council
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Town of Normal ended its fiscal year June 30, with reserves down by $1.8 million.

Carleigh Gray / WGLT

The Heartland Community College (HCC) Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved a tentative budget for the next fiscal year. The $30.7 million spending plan allots for a $260,000 deficit, which is half of the original projection.

Jason Barickman
Seth Perlman / AP

State Sen. Jason Barickman said the latest string of sexual harassment allegations within the Illinois Democratic Party provides one more reason why longtime House Speaker Mike Madigan should lose his leadership post.

Dietz Pleased With State Budget

Jun 4, 2018
Homecoming parade at ISU
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

The new state budget includes $1.3 million in additional money for Illinois State University.

A bewildering maze of hollow plastic pipes charged with air that can keep balls aloft enchants children.
Children's Discovery Museum / Town of Normal

UPDATED 3 p.m. | Back when the state budget crisis was just kicking off, the Department of Natural Resources announced more than $1 million in grant money for Bloomington-Normal museums and the Miller Park Zoo. That money never came, as Gov. Bruce Rauner and lawmakers refused to compromise on a budget and years of standoff turned into years of cuts.

GovRauner / Twitter

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed Illinois' new state budget, the first full-year spending plan he's enacted since taking office in 2015.

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz reveals the renovations plans.
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz is welcoming passage of a new state budget that will increase higher education funding after years of cuts and uncertainty.

Rich Saal / The State Journal-Register/Pool

The Illinois House has approved a $38.5 billion state budget for the year that begins July 1.

John O'Connor / AP

The Illinois General Assembly enters its final day of the spring session halfway to sending Gov. Bruce Rauner what both Democrats and Republicans say is a balanced budget.

John O'Connor / AP

Illinois lawmakers are entering the next-to-last day of their spring session and are optimistic about meeting their deadline for a state budget.

Seth Perlman / AP

The Illinois House has endorsed the idea of switching to a graduated income tax.

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