Central Illinois lawmakers offered their reactions to Gov. JB Pritzker's budget address Wednesday. Here's what they had to say about the governors $41.6 billion spending plan:
State Sen. Darren Bailey, R-Xenia: “I sat for 30+ minutes today and I listened to a governor who is completely out of touch with the state and with the people. I listened to a grown man whine, complain and blame absolutely everything past and present except himself and his own party as to the woes and the demise of the state of Illinois. This budget remains at least $1.7 billion dollars out of whack and this budget has several provisions that he claims as corporate loopholes that are nothing but tax increases on business and job killers for the state.”
State Sen. Chapin Rose, R-Mahomet: “Our state’s finances are a mess. Rather than reality, we got gimmicks dreamed up in an alternate universe than the one Illinoisans have to live in. Who uses their Discover card to pay their Visa bill, anyway? That is what Governor Pritzker is doing with the current-year budget. And in the next budget year, removing the pension payment from the operating expenses of the state to pretend that operating expenses aren’t increasing – isn’t reality either. Nor is using $1.7 billion in assumptions that require federal or state legislative approval – this is the same junk that past governors of both parties have been roundly criticized for doing. Look, budgeting isn’t an easy job, and I don’t envy his position, but we can’t keep driving down the same broken road expecting better results."
State Rep. Brad Halbrook, R-Shelbyville: “To be clear, there are tax increases in this budget. The governor is proposing a tax increase of nearly a billion dollars on the job creators in this great state. These vital business reforms were negotiated and agreed to with Republican support. Now the governor is kicking those reforms to the curb. It's time to get Illinois’ fiscal house in order. The house is on fire, the governor's boarding up the windows and doors, turning the fire department away all the while suggesting he has it all under control and there's nothing to see here.”
State Rep. Chris Miller, R-Oakland: “Illinois’ finances are a sinking ship and instead of plugging the holes, the Governor is spending his time describing the drapes. The budget he introduced contains no meaningful reforms to fix the structural problems facing our state. It is the same quick fix gimmicks that have created Illinois’ financial problems in the first place.”