Illinois lawmakers are a House vote away from ending a two-and-a-half years state budget impasse.
While the rest of the state was lighting off fireworks in celebration of Independence Day, state lawmakers spent their Fourth of July at the State Capitol. Following last week’s House vote to increase the state’s income taxes to pass a balanced budget, the Senate followed suit yesterday by passing all three bills needed for a state budget.
According to our news partners at WICS-ABC Newschannel 20, the first of such bills was the revenue bill, which would create a permanent tax hike, with the income tax rate moving from 3.75 percent to 4.95 percent. The revenue bill passed the Senate 36-18, giving it the minimum votes needed for a three-fifths majority. The second piece of legislation regarded a spending plan authorizing $36.1 billion in spending, which passed 39-14. And the third was the budget implementation bill, which would pay off close to $8 billion of Illinois’ current $15 billion dollars in unpaid bills. This third bill also passed by the same margin of 36-18.
Local Senator Sam McCann voted against the tax increase, but in favor of the spending plan. McCann explains why he voted yes to the budget.
Less than an hour after landing on Governor Rauner’s desk, the entire package had been vetoed and sent back to the Senate, where lawmakers voted to override the governor’s vetoes.
It’s now up to the House, who will vote whether or not to also override Rauner’s veto. If the House does in fact override the veto, the budget would become law, marking an end to the state’s budget stalemate currently in its third year.