Illinois House passes $50.6B state budget

Illinois State Capitol in Springfield.
Illinois State Capitol in Springfield.(WEEK)
Published: May. 27, 2023 at 11:36 PM CDT
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PEORIA (25News Now) - The Illinois House of Representatives passed the $50.6 billion state budget early Saturday morning.

The budget includes investments into education, child care, health care, public safety and economic development.

Democratic leaders say this is a fiscally responsible budget that will help everyone in the state. But Republicans argued there are “smoke and mirrors” and “gimmicks that make it look balanced.

“The revenues that are needed for this budget-- they are not my money. It is not your money. It is not Republican money. It is not Democratic money. This money belongs to the taxpayers of the state of Illinois and they deserve better,” said Republican Rep. Norine Hammond of Macomb.

But Chief Budget Negotiator Jehan Gordon-Booth says Democrats are the ones who got Illinois eight credit upgrades with their balanced budgets.

“If there is any “smoke and mirrors,” it’s this design that it’s either all or nothing. That if we don’t do everything that everybody wants, then somehow, we are doing nothing. You know that’s a fallacy. You know that’s not how this place works because the fact of the matter is that the state can’t afford that and still be compassionate and be fiscally responsible,” said Gordon-Booth.

The budget passed on a vote of 73-38 and now heads to Governor Pritzker, who is expected to sign it as soon as possible.